Thursday, January 22, 2009

Meet Heidi Childers.

Heidi can dance your face off.  Furthermore, she can choreograph your legs off.

I have had the pleasure of witnessing and experiencing both respectively.  Although we never did any terribly serious dancing with the Silk Mangos at UT, I along with my fellow cast-alum can testify that Heidi knows what she's doing with her body on stage (or up in the club with a bottle full of bub).  Since moving to Chicago and joining Culture Shock, a multidisciplinary dance troupe, Heidi hasn't lost a beat.  In fact, you can check out some of he backup work and her sweet manicure in Kid Sister's Pro Nails video here.

Throughout the years, Heidi has been a great friend, a creative partner, a neighbor, a motivator, a chicago tour guide, and a hip-hop head.  I owe her big time for introducing me to The Roots, Talib Kweli,  The Cool Kids, Common, and a slew of other acts.  

If you find yourself in Chi-town sometime soon, hop on the L and let her take you for  bike ride around her neighborhood.  Don't forget though, she has experience as a personal trainer, so be prepared to pedal fast.  

Meet sister from another mister.

Name: Heidi Childers

1. Are you a practicing artist?
(If yes, please describe your work in a sentence or two. If no, please describe your connection/interest in the arts community).
In a way, yes. I have the privilege of performing on a consistent basis with Culture Shock Chicago and on occasion with other various projects. I also use movement to make people cry in my personal training (haha).

2. What is your primary artistic medium?

3. What do you dabble in (artistically)?
Writing for my own sanity

4. Where do you live (generally, not creepily)?
Chicago, Illinois

5. Aside from your studio, what physical, local space inspires you the most?
Cyphers on the dance floor. I think the crowd, darkness, and in some cases mild to severe inebriation encourage people to let go of their bodies and do what feels natural. Dancers adapt so much to space, music, and audience that it never gets old.

6. What is your favorite part of town?
Wicker Park and surrounding neighborhoods. It's where I live and play. Unfortunately it's losing it's magic, slowly but surely, as the artists continue to move northwest into cheaper, less gentrified neighborhoods to escape the yuppies.

7. Norm had Cheers. The gang on Saved by the Bell had The Maxx. Where would you be considered a "regular?"
I don't really have one. Times are hard, and money is not flowing like it used to. I can't just go anywhere and post up on a regular basis without the guilt of having to buy something. If I really had to choose, Funky Buddha Lounge and/or Butterfly Social Club feel the most comfortable. It's always free (for me)! And the gym. :)

8. What is your (alcoholic) beverage of choice?
beer or wine, depending on how fancy I feel

9. What is your (non-alcoholic) beverage of choice?
water or coffee, depending on the time of day

10. What would your last supper consist of?
a beautiful buffet of my mom's signature creations

11. What 3 famous artists (visual artists, actors, directors, writers, musicians etc.), dead or alive, inspire you the most?
In dance, Mia Michaels because she can rip my heart apart with her choreography and Bob Fosse because he could do so much with so little. In training and bodywork, Jillian Michaels cause she's a beast, does not care, and takes no BS!!

12. What 3 almost-famous people, artists or non-artists, dead or alive inspire you the most?
Jilly Meyers, who I've been following only recently, because she isn't afraid of being random for the sake of being random and doesn't seem jaded by the dance scene today. My mom isn't famous, but she's still my biggest motivation and inspiration. Most often, I'm inspired by ordinary people. I'm inspired by those who recognize what their bodies are capable of doing and do the best they can, whether we're talking about health or dance or movement or whatever.

13. Name 3 bands/musicians that you dig immensely:
I am so bad at this. It's hard to name only three. Adele makes me want to move and cry. The latest from The Foreign Exchange and Q-Tip has restored my faith in hip hop. And even if it's lame to say this, I'm a huge fan of my boyfriend, Just J. His storytelling ability is amazing, and seeing his process is rewarding and makes me respect him even more as an artist.

14. Name 3 movies that you dig immensely:
While there are many more than three, the first few that come to mind are Slumdog Millionaire, City of God, and Fight Club.

15. What book(s) are you currently reading?
The China Study, The Audacity of Hope, a cookbook on Clean Eating

16. Do you work a "regular" 9-5 job?
freelance 10-15 hrs a week at an ad agency

17. How long have you lived where you live?
2.5 years

18. At what time of the day do you feel most creative?
It varies, but normally evenings

19. If you went to college, what was your major?
Advertising Media

20. If you went to college, what was your minor?
Started on Asian American Studies and never finished

21. In a haiku, please describe a memory from childhood.
will you be my friend
no bro or sis to play with
let's ride bikes today

22. Are you a Texan?
Hell Yes.

23. What are 3 things that you love (or miss) about Texas?
relatively warm winters (as compared to Chicago), my family/friends, our unyielding pride for the Lone Star State

24. Anything else you would like to add?
Your body is capable of amazing things. Be good to it, and it will return the favor.

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