My Travels to Guatemala

Last night, I arrived in Boston after spending two amazing weeks dancing, teaching, and performing in Guatemala! I traveled with an organization called JUNTOS Collective, which is a non-profit group that aims to engage and stimulate communities of dance lovers world-wide.


We traveled to Livingston, Xela, Retalhuleu, Antigua, and Guatemala City. I met and worked with people of all ages and backgrounds. Our outreach ranged from performing at HIV Centers, hospitals, and public schools and on community stages, tile floors, and concrete surfaces. This included a school for deaf children, dancers from a professional theme park, people who had no dance training, and professional ballet school students.

Oh, and one other miniscule detail. I didn’t speak a lick of Spanish past “Hola” and “Gracias”.

Regardless, even on the first day, I was able to connect without words. My body language could transcend past what I initially perceived as a limitation. Dance and music are two universal systems of communication. Even though most of the music we played was in English and our contemporary dancing may have come across as unfamiliar, we were able to impact those watching or participating. They could feel what we were trying to say.

It has inspired me to seek out different international artists. Even though I may not understand the words or the context, it is art, and it still has the ability to move me.

Which, on a different note, is why I am so glad to be a working here this summer! It is also another reason to go see an international artist whose work you don’t completely understand. We are all human, and we can all be inspired by honest expression and a good rhythm.

-Christina, Marketing Intern & Student at the New England Conservatory