Curio Dance is a group of professional dancers, artistically directed by Dario and Giselle. They have world-renowned experience choreographing, teaching and performing in national dance companies, Broadway shows, television, film, and full-length productions in the fine arts and commercial dance industries.
After receiving their education in dance performance from The Juilliard School and SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Dance, they together joined Luna Negra Dance Theater of Chicago.
Seeking more creative collaborations, the siblings took their art form to another level by fostering the original creation of iLuminate. iLuminate has extended its tenure as a recognized dance sensation from NBC’s America’s Got Talent with a self-titled show currently running off-broadway and touring internationally. They also created shows at Disneyland and Six Flags Theme Parks. They have performed on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Good Morning America, the TODAY Show, MGM Grand in Las Vegas and Radio City Music Hall in NYC.
Amidst all of Curio Dance’s adventures, Dario and Giselle’s hearts have stayed connected to home and to their roots among the Twin Cities vibrant and diverse community of dancers and starting in 2009, Co-Directed five productions of “Drop the Mic” to sold-out audiences at the Guthrie Theater and The Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts.
This dynamic duo has carefully studied artistic direction of famous choreographers such as Julie Taymor (Across the Universe), Laurence Rhodes and Benjamin Harkarvy (Juilliard), Robert Battle (Alvin Ailey), Dwight Rhoden (Complexions), Desmond Richardson (Chicago), Joe Lanteri (NYCDA), Mia Michaels (SYTYCD), Paul Taylor (Paul Taylor Dance Company), Laura Glenn (Jose Limon), Mark Morris (Mark Morris Dance Group), Cindy Salgado (Cedar Lake Dance Ensemble), James Canfield (Nevada Ballet Theater), Laurie Stallings Vanderpool (Hubbard Street Dance Chicago), Eduardo Vilaro (Luna Negra Dance Theater and Dance Theater of Harlem).
Curio Dance enhances live performance using interdisciplinary art and a multitude of dance genres. Curio Dance believes that diversity is strength. They are eclectic: reflecting the multiple perspectives of generations. They combine folklore and urban movement to bring artists together from many cultures. With an integrative and creative perspective that speaks to a broad audience, these crossover themes have been present in the past five productions of “Drop The Mic!” Hip Hop Dance Expressions, The Light Within, Actions Speak, Let the Sole Shine and Co-Operation were successfully presented at the Guthrie Theater’s Dowling Studio and the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts.
What was first a vision facilitated by co-presenter Sue McLean, is now a preeminent outlet for a bold community of phenomenally talented artists storytelling through movement. Curio Dance nurtures the unity of every style and genre of dance and encourages younger choreographers to work amongst the more experienced. Together they fill the gap and create a place for belonging.
The Mejias have performed with iLuminate at MGM Grand in Las Vegas; The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Good Morning America, The TODAY Show; Roseland Ballroom, City Center, Duke on 42nd St, New World Stages, The Duke on 42nd Street, and Radio City Music Hall in NYC; Fox Theatre in Atlanta; On Cue Ball, Boston MA; J.F.K Center for the Performing Arts, Washington D.C.; NASA Space Center with Bay Area Houston Ballet and Theatre; The Worlds Greatest Cabaret in Paris, France; Capetown, South Africa; Kazakstan National Radio, Telemundo, and in Kairo, Egypt; Hong Kong Dance Festival, Hong Kong; Casa Del Cultura, Ecuador; Teatro Principal Burgos, Spain. The Mejias have choreographed for Cobra Starship; Disneyland and Six Flags Theme Parks; Crystal Cruises; 6 Flags over Georgia; Broadway at Bryant Park; Harris Theater, Chicago.
Locally they have choreographed and performed for the Ordway Theater, Guthrie Theater, The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis Institute for the Arts Theater, The Southern Theater, The Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts, Hopkins Performing Arts, Mystic Lake Casino, Pantages Theater, Illusion Theater, Bryant Lake Bowl Theater, PBS MN Original, Kare 11 News.
Through dazzling performances, Curio Dance honors diversity by blending classical, traditional and urban styles of dance. Their artistry concerns the environment, is thought-provoking in social justice and entertains by liberating audiences towards freedom of expression.
"You can tell a dance performance has done its job when someone starts grooving in the aisle. On Friday night a tiny tot was busting some moves at intermission after cheering on a high-energy break dance battle by House of Dance Twin Cities and Finisher’s Students. Someday that little guy will be spinning on his head, as well."
"'We’re global citizens, and this show reflects our tastes, our interests, our travels,” Dario said last week amid a rehearsal at the Cowles. He was talking about the “Mic” lineup. The 40-plus dancers perform in styles as varied as Latin and hip-hop, ballet and ballroom. There is some rumba and African dance thrown in, as well."
"Surrounded by total darkness, the outlines of their bodies and faces, as well as of all the objects onstage, appear to have been sculpted from glow sticks. Moving to a score by Christopher Tignor and Justin Keitt (a.k.a. Kanobby) that combines hip-hop, jazz and classical influences, the performers look like candy-colored constellations that have dropped out of the sky for a party."
"We've been seeking our entire life those shows and performers that have the extra spark to be seen on stage," Dario says. "My sister and I are always asking, 'What is the magic in this situation? What if we move like this?' Our real talent exists in our collaboration with each other and with others who have backgrounds from street dancing to Native American dance to Chinese marital artist to hip-hop to tap dancers -- to reveal how beautiful our city is."
"Brother/sister duo, Dario and Giselle Mejia, started Curio Dance only a little over a year ago but they have already received much praise. We get a sneak peak at a new dance and see how the siblings combine classical training with jazz, modern and club, creating their own unique style."
Website Photos | Dan Norman
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