We had the good fortune of connecting with Liz George Fesch and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Liz, is there a quote or affirmation that’s meaningful to you?
My perspective shifted in my professional life this last year with the challenges that we all seemed to face. The idea of freedom as an artist was a reoccurring theme for me with respect to how essential and connected freedom is in striving for excellence in my work, in addition to most effectively and genuinely interacting with dancers in the studio. The below quote is one that reminds me of this. “The purpose of liberty, is to allow a free people to be creative to release the creative energy that we need. And also, to strive for excellence and virtue. That’s what life is all about.” Ron Paul Freedom, liberty, and diversity of thought, are essential to finding balance in my opinion and “releasing the creative energy that we need.” I have made it even more of a priority recently in my classes and rehearsals to create an environment where young artists feel free to ask questions and speak freely in combination with investing in their rigorous technical training. In a current culture where people seem so easily offended and divided, I hope to promote an environment where students can feel comfortable asking questions to further their growth as artists and see connections rather than compartmentalizing their work. I have learned that when diversity of thought is not made a priority, it is difficult to ask questions and further develop an individual sense of purpose, imagination, and artistic beliefs without just regurgitating somebody else’s beliefs and agenda. I hope to promote a sense of freedom and risk taking in my work as a teacher, choreographer, and human being!

Please tell us more about your art. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story? 
I would like to think that I got to where I am today professionally because of hard work. That may be partly true, but I think that more importantly I tried to be a good collaborator and listener. That was easy to do with such wonderfully talented, supportive, and kind colleagues who I learned so much from over the last 16 years at the University of Arizona. I think that I am most proud of my work as a teacher in my most recent years and attribute so much of that to all of my previous instructors, family, and friends who guided me. My role as a mother to two young girls has given me a greater sense of empathy and acceptance in relating to students, that prior to becoming a mom, I don’t know I always had. I think I am most proud of my work in most recent years in the dance studio as a teacher and choreographer regarding my dedication to being open, collaborative, and student centered in my approach.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I would hope that my best friend was visiting in the Spring because that is my favorite time of year in Tucson. I would also hope to take a lot of hot yoga throughout the week and Tucson Yoga Sol is my favorite in town! It would be fun to shop at my new favorite antique store, Patriot House Antiques Collectibles and Gifts and eat some good Mexican food, which Tucson has so much of. My family and I enjoy Sonoita, Arizona where I would want to take my friend to visit. It is a scenic hour drive south of Tucson where we could enjoy some wine and music at Arizona Hops and Vines. The weather in the Spring is ideal here in Tucson, so we could definitely spend some time outside jumping on the trampoline with our goats.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
 Without my Mom and Dad’s dedication to taking me to dance classes, rehearsals, and auditions when I was young, I would not have had the training I needed to pursue dance in college and beyond. There is a lot of commitment and sacrifice needed to support a young artist’s training. I see it​ even more clearly now as a parent, so big thanks to my Mom and Dad! I am also thankful for my husband who is a supportive partner and father who helps me balance my career and our family life.

Facebook: Liz Fesch

Other: Elizabeth George-Fesch is an Associate Professor and Undergraduate Advisor in the School of Dance at the University of Arizona. Some of her recent guest teaching includes Ballet Hispanico, Lincoln Midwest Ballet Company, City Ballet of San Diego, Orange County School of the Arts, and Perry-Mansfield Fine Arts Camp in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Ms. George trained at Ballet Arts in Tucson and danced with the Dayton Ballet. This is her sixteenth year at the University of Arizona where she continues to enjoy teaching ballet, pointe, choreography, yoga, and creating work for the UA Dance Ensemble.

Image Credits
Ed Flores

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