• 2024 starts in America

    What's your Ikigai?

What's your Ikigai?


The start of a new year is often a time for people to reflect on what they want to do more or less of. January 2024 has started for Vanessa with a particular focus on these questions as she begins a new creation entitled 'Ikigai', the Japanese word for 'reason for being' or deep sense of purpose. Vanessa is heading to America to choreograph 'Ikigai' for the contemporary dance company of Brigham Young University (BYU).

The collaboration between Vanessa and BYU began in summer 2023. 20+ BYU students and professors came to Bern to train in aerial dance with Vanessa as part of a Study Abroad Programme, which also included time in Vienna (at the Impulstanz Festival) and Amsterdam (training with Nederlands Dans Theater). The training time with BYU was a highlight of Vanessa's year. The students were highly motivated, positive and quick to absorb all they could. Their stamina and enthusiasm was impressive in Bern's July heat and made a float down the Aare river very welcome at the end of each day!

Vanessa is thrilled to again collaborate with BYU, this time working creatively to make a piece with the students. A stint in Utah's winter promises to be somewhat cooler but no less intense than the summer meeting...and no better topic to begin the year than to focus on what it is that makes us feel alive.

Looking for a unique choreographic collaboration?

With a diverse range of experience in choreographing for dance and theatre companies with professional, international, cross-generational and inclusive casts, Vanessa Cook offers a positive partnership.