Raissa Simpson’s PUSH Dance Company Builds Vibrant Contemporary Dances To Gain A Deeper Understanding Of The Challenges Attributed To Mixed Heritage.


In Conversation with David Herrera

PUSH Dance Company is proud to present choreography by David Herrera on September 20-22, 2019 for PUSHfest Program A at ODC Theater in San Francisco. 


Tell us a little bit about your dance background.
I began dancing late in life. I was 19yrs old when I started with the basics at the recommendation of my acting professor.  The course of my life changed because of it. I officially launched DHPCo. in 2007 because I noticed there was a huge and problematic void in the inclusion of Latinx voice, bodies, and experiences in modern dance.  

What can audiences look forward to seeing in your work at PUSHfest
We will be creating a new exploratory work that will eventually become our 11th home season in 2020. 

What are the major sources of inspiration for your choreography?
My inspiration comes from my everyday life….in particular, I create work that speaks to & about my communities, Latinx, immigrant, POC, LGBTQI, and its relationship with American society.  More specifically, I am interested in presenting the experiences of Latinx peoples via modern dance, giving it a platform, a voice, and visibility. 

If you hadn’t chosen this career, what might you have been doing in your life?
One of my majors in college was American Studies, with a concentration on the “Evolution of American Culture”.  I would have pursued a career in politics & law. To this day I am passionate about politics and their ramifications on “everyday” people. 

What advice would you pass on to an aspiring choreographer?
Allow yourself to fail! Fail big and learn from it.  When something doesn’t go your way, remember there is always an alternative.  I wish someone had told me that when I was younger. Failure is the first big step to success!  Also, don’t be scared to ask for assistance or guidance from your peers or elders. 

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