Q&A with Maria Ramas and Kate Johnson!

A daughter’s promise to tell her mother’s story serves as the starting point for this documentary on the life of the celebrated Croatian ballerina Mia Slavenska, which becomes a fascinating and moving reflection on historical memory, national identity, and the power of dance. The film retraces Mia’s journey from tumultuous prewar Europe through her emergence as a glamorous ballerina of the Ballets Russes and a star attraction on stages across America, culminating with her return to her homeland.

Screening with:

Nancy Allison & Paul Allman, USA, 2014, DCP, 8m

Jean Erdman came up with the choreography for “Hamadryad,” a vision of a passionate wood nymph, in 1948 while walking through a forest and hearing a lone flutist practicing Debussy’s “Syrinx.” The filmmakers creatively re-create the Erdman piece using Martha Graham dancer Miki Orihara, taking her from the Manhattan streets to her studio where she rehearses the solo conjuring herself into the very forest where the dance was first imagined.