Skip to content

Music Dream

Organized by: Mary Love

Mary's Photo

THE STORY:

Who I am
I was born and raised as the Last child of my family belonging to the Igbo tribe in Upko, a small town in the Anambra, Nigeria. As a child I grew up in a family that was struggling to make ends meet but knew how to celebrate life king-size. Being inspired by the music and dance at a very young age, I knew that I wanted to live my life on a stage, and that creating, performing and telling stories was my true calling. I would seize every opportunity to perform and entertain. I was a member of my school and college rock band and had created a contemporary dance society in my school, with which I got a chance to travel and perform all over Nigeria. In Nigeria, there are not many schools that offer a holistic education in the field of dance( ballet/contemporary) and dance alone is not encouraged as a sole profession to pursue.
I graduated from my high school in 2012 and moved to capital city- Abuja, It was here that it became clear to me that I would be an entertainer.
After singing in bars on the weekends and working in a dance company 7days a week in Abuja for over six years where I performed, choreographed and taught jazz dance, I decided to take my educational and professional pursuits to the next level. As I educated myself about the works of world famous artists and companies and recognized the potential of art to make a global impact, I knew that I had to find a way to train myself on an international level and perform and collaborate with artists from diverse backgrounds professionally I did my part to facilitate this vision, I auditioned and got selected into a professional dance and music training program at Enugu City Centre. With the love and support from my previous Fund Raising, I was able to start my degree in MUSIC at Hollins University .

As I began training in a rigorous schedule of ballet, modern and contemporary dance classes, to further develop my artistic voice I simultaneously engaged in a five-month Choreographic Investigation Course from Dance New Amsterdam NYC. In the past two years I have been fortunate enough to work with some brilliant artists and have performed on some of the prime stages in New York, such as Lincoln Centre, Manhattan Movement and Arts Centre, Ellen Stewart Theatre LaMaMa, Peridance Capezio Theatre, St Marks Church, City Centre Studios, Dance New Amsterdam Theatre. I have also received a full scholarship at the Sheppard Academy of Vocal Arts NYC directed by Bettina Sheppard. As a student I have had exceptional luck with finding the right teachers and mentors who have taught and guided me so generously. Currently, I am enjoying being part of ChristinaNoel & The Creature Company, General Mischief Dance Theatre, TNSP and Overground Arts Allliance. When I look back at myself as a child belting away to the songs of Dylan,U2, Bruce Springsteen, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan to name a few, imitating the dance moves of all the TV stars or sitting in the small room of my first music teacher, singing indian raagas as she played the harmonium... I feel like no dream is impossible no matter where you come from, as long as its consistently and fearlessly pursued.

My Goal
1-My artistic goal is to create work using the elements of musical theatre in a contemporary context and compose my own music for the same. I desire to tell stories of true life experiences and take my audience on an emotional, intellectual and holistic journey. I would then travel with my repertoire and perform on stages all over the world sharing my work and creation with as many people as I can.
2-I will also create a dance school in Nigeria and USA through which I shall share my learning and my craft with my students. Also I wish to develop dance educational programs and introduce them to schools and universities that are open to the idea of incorporating the value of dance and creativity in every level of education. My school will provide a nurturing environment where people can discover, express and create freely and fearlessly.
3-I shall host Artist Residencies in my hometown where indigenous artists, artists from the cities and international artists can collaborate and create, learn and teach workshops and in turn promote cultural exchange. I’d like to name this residency “The Artist Pit-stop". There shall be weekly/ monthly shows in this space where local artists(dancers, musicians, poets,writers,film makers, etc) can share their work and talent with the people of their hometown.
4-These artists will then travel together all over Nigeria (and eventually abroad) with their works created in "The Artist Pit-stop" workshops and perform on various platforms. This way the international visitors would't just come to Nigeria to one small town,but also get to travel and absorb the Nigerian experience.
5- Dance is also a very powerful means of healing and self discovery. Therefore, I plan to work with expressive arts therapists/dance movement therapists/ body work specialists and ask them to join forces with me to promote and educate on the possibilities of the maturing field of expressive art therapies.

The Impact of your Contribution-
With your help and support I shall be able to put myself through school and acquire the qualification, knowledge and experience that it takes to create the kind of work that I want to and share it with my audience, other artists and my students in Nigeria. Your contribution will help me build the network and support that I would much need for my artistic endeavor and spread the seeds of dance and creativity around the world. The MFA from Hollins University will also teach me how to fund, promote and efficiently shape my ideas for my work, my vision for my school and the artist residency and a deeper understanding what goes into making a successful organization. I also get a chance to go to Frankfurt and work with the William Forsythe Company and the University of Music and Performing Arts this summer! Form my experience in New York, I have learnt that many dancers, teachers, choreographers and facilitators wish to visit Nigeria to share their work and also learn the Nigerian art forms. Whereas in Nigeria, young dancers are becoming more aware of the new forms of contemporary dance practices, mind body approaches and improvisational methods of collaborating and creating but don't really have proper means to receive such education and training and can only rely on the internet for information. Through my school and the artist residencies, the young aspiring dancers and artists of Nigeria can widen their exposure by receiving first hand education and training from these International artists and teachers and in return share their artistry with them. As an artist in todays’ world, I believe that one has to be very open minded and be willing to learn from different art forms and cultures of the world. I am a strong believer in cultural exchange and have always been interested in all the nuances and colors of all art forms and cultures, which is also one of the main reasons why I chose the city of New York. You can be from any part of the world and find yourself at home in this city because of its diversity.

To give you a brief idea, this is the link to the courses I will be taking in my
MFA.
http://www.hollins.edu/grad/dance/documents/dance.pdf

Current Situation-
My MFA begins this Fall 18 of August 2014. It is a one year 60 credit course that would cost me $50,520 US dollars. It is divided into four semesters costing about $13,500 each.
I have been fortunate enough to be granted a fellowship of $13005, which will be divided into four equal parts for all four semesters.
I'm taking it as a good sign from the universe and doing the best that I can to listen, believe and follow.

Other Ways You Can Help
1. You can ask your friends or family folks who you think could contribute by getting the word out and sharing or posting the link to my campaign on your FB pages/twitter/email.
2. You can write to me at patunalu@gmail.com and send me your wishes, your positive energy and your love.
3. Every little contribution counts!! I have about 60 whole days and even if you choose to donate a $ everyday it will amount to 45$ at the end of it and if its 10$...450$!! 


Thank You All For Your Donations!!!

DONATE

To This Fundraiser

$0

MONEY RAISED
  •  
  •  
  •  
Organized by

Mary Love

This is a direct to organizer fundraiser.

Donor Comments

Be the first to Donate to Mary and Music Dream.

Report this page — Let Us Know if you think this page is breaking the law or the CrowdRise Terms