In good dance company

Two young choreographers realized their dream of producing their first show with their own dance company Friday night at their alma mater, Glendale Community College.

Emma Mesrobian and Illiana Nuñez, co-artistic directors, produced the debut performance of their Couture Dance Company, which was named in September as a resident dance company of Glendale Community College.

It’s a long time dream come true, Mesrobian said.

“I’m truly proud that we’re finally putting the work out there, we’ve been wanting to do this since 2002,” she said.

The two met during the Glendale Community College Dance Department’s spring dance concert in 2002, and found a common passion for dance, Mesrobian said.

“We clicked with our choreography,” she said. “There was an instant chemistry between us and our dance styles.”

They speak the same language, Nuñez said.

“It’s a great relationship,” she said. “We are able to communicate our ideas respectfully and disagree respectfully and be completely honest with each other.”

The two went to different four-year universities to complete their studies, Mesrobian went to Cal State Long Beach and Nuñez to Loyola Marymount, both graduating in 2006. They have continued to collaborate at performances at the college and at outside venues.

Last year, Mesrobian was talking to Lynn McMurrey, co-chair of the Glendale Community College dance department, and he suggested they apply for the resident dance company on campus, a program that began in 2006.

McMurrey is elated that Couture Dance Company was chosen.

“I’m very proud of them because the two girls are alumni of the department who have gone on to four-year schools and have gotten their degrees, which is a huge accomplishment,” he said. “It shows a commitment a lot of people don’t have.”

Mesrobian, 26, had been auditioning as a background dancer for Celine Deon and others but wasn’t getting hired. This opportunity is a dream come true, she said.

“I feel like I’m at the top of the world,” she said. “It feels real good, knowing I’m being productive and doing something on my own and having dancers working for me.”

But it’s been a lot of work, Nuñez said.

“It’s a tremendous honor,” she said. “We were honored that Lynn would give us this opportunity and of course fear set in, because we knew it was a great responsibility.”

In addition to creating the choreography for the dances, they have been doing all the business side, including raising money to pay the dancers, Mesrobian said. They coordinated a fundraiser and invited their friends in the arts to a party at Side Bar, a Glendale lounge, and charged $5 admission. They showed DVDs of their dances.

“I’m really am proud of illiana and myself for starting this company, because it has not been easy and this is truly a dream come true,” Mesrobian said. “I can’t wait for the company to accelerate and do more events. My dream is to take my Couture Dance Company to the Ford Theatre in Hollywood.”

Friday’s show was titled “Auto Dance Ographies.” There are six dancers in the company and Mesrobian and Nuñez each choreograph their own works that are danced by them and/or members of the company, Nunez said.

“All the pieces are based on experiences of our lives,” said Mesrobian, who lives in Glendale. “They are true stories of our lives [told] in dance.”

Their dance style is contemporary dance with a mix of jazz, flamenco and dance theater, which is acting with monologue, she added.


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