ArtWeek Spotlight: Danza Orgánica

Marsha Parrilla discusses meshing performance with social justice.

ArtWeek offers opportunities to a wide variety of creators, innovators, and visionaries. Marsha Parrilla, creator of Danza Orgánica, fits under all three of those titles. A combination of a love for the arts and a passion for social justice led Parrilla to form this impactful dance collective in 2007. For this upcoming ArtWeek, Danza Orgánica will be giving participants a look into the company’s new piece, which is focused on Puerto Rican/Caribbean identity.

Parrilla founded the company with an intent to focus on performance that aligned with social justice, and to create a space for underrepresented voices. “ We have grown in terms of our commitment to our vision, and have committed to being a social-justice oriented dance theater company.”, Parrilla said. With a core company of ten people, Danza Orgánica utilizes a medley of dance styles to comment on a multitude of social issues. Cultural grants like the Creative City Grant, the New England Dance Fund, and the Festivals Grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, help the company continue their work. In addition to artistic pieces, the company unpacks complex issues by using intensive research as part of their creative process. Information is collected, deconstructed, and absorbed into the work.

This upcoming Spring will be Danza Orgánica’s second season with ArtWeek. Parrilla is focused on leaving participants with “a sense of what social justice really looks like, a sense of hope, and a call to action”.

Parrilla with the Danza Orgánica company.

“I came across ArtWeek through a recommendation. I love being a part of ArtWeek because I feel like we‘re part of the larger fabric of great arts in Boston.”

The company aspires to “…deliver a clear message of social justice within a high quality arts experience.”, Parrilla notes. As our cultural climate continues to ebb and flow, the need for art with a message becomes even more important. Parrilla cites “not sounding preachy” as a main challenge in this artistic mission. She hopes the pieces lead the audience to draw their own conclusions about the issues around them.

Currently, Danza Orgánica is working on Running in Stillness, a commentary on the impact of mass incarceration on women and their families. The company has come a long way since its 2007 inception. “Danza Orgánica has evolved both in size and scope. It went from a small dance company of three that created short dance pieces, to a large company of 10 that creates evening length works.” explains Parrilla.

Photo by: Leonardo March

Interested in being a part of ArtWeek or learning how to get involved for Spring ArtWeek 2017 (April 28 — May 7)? Contact the team at artweek@bochcenter.org today!