Louisa Miller is a dancer and social justice activist.
“I feel so honored to have received this incredibly generous grant. I know that the William Male Foundation will be significant in shaping my future as an artist, and for that I am very grateful. The foundation's generosity helps to make this dream come true, and it means the world to me.”
Louisa’s love affair with dance began when she was five. She would frequently put together costumes from clothes and fabric and stage carefully orchestrated performances for her parents in their living room. And as she grew older, dance become a serious passion for her. She now studies ballet and modern dance at Performing Arts Workshop in Encinitas. This amazing studio has supported and shaped Louisa as an artist.
Upon entering high school, Louisa began to grow increasingly aware of current events and social injustices in the world and wanted to contribute to positive change. At sixteen, she became involved with Hands of Peace, a non-profit organization that brings together Israeli, Palestinian, and American teens to engage in dialogue, conflict resolution, and leadership training. She learned the power of empathy, listening, being vulnerable, and how our shared humanity is larger than our political, cultural or religious differences. Louisa saw directly how dialogue can create opportunities for healing and bridge divisions. She began to wonder whether dance and movement could do the same.
Louisa’s artistic dream is to continue growing as a dancer and striving to integrate her two passions of dance and peacemaking. She wants to use dance as a healing modality and vehicle for bringing people in conflict together in powerful and unique ways.
Louisa is going to use the William Male Foundation grant to attend a ten-month training program with the Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company in Israel. The founder of this company was a Holocaust survivor whose mission was to promote peace and understanding through dance. The company lives and works together on the kibbutz, doing outreach shows and teaching in their community with Arab, Israeli and Bedouin families, developmentally disabled and troubled youth, and the elderly. Spending ten months dancing with The Kibbutz Contemporary Dance company is a dream come true for Louisa. She will be able to continue growing technically as a modern dancer, have the opportunity to learn innovative choreography, and also be involved with healing and outreach work. She is incredibly grateful to the William Male Foundation for supporting her artistic dreams with their generous grant.