After taking just a two week workshop with choreographer Ohad Naharin, dancer Brittany Engel-Adams knew she had to move to Israel. Growing up in West Palm Beach, Florida, Engel-Adams, 22, started studying ballet at the age of 9. She attended the Bak Middle School of the Arts and Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts, in addition to taking extra curricular classes at Ballet Florida. After graduating from high school, Engel-Adams was awarded a fellowship to New York’s acclaimed Ailey School, where she studied for two years before being asked to apprentice, and later dance with, the Ailey II Company.
This past year, Adams took a workshop in Tel Aviv with Naharin, artistic director of Batsheva Dance Company and creator of a dance language called Gaga. The experience “transformed” her — so much so that she decided to make aliyah to pursue her dance career. Engel-Adams spoke to The Arty Semite about dance, Israel and growing up as a biracial Jew.
Laurie Kamens: What is “Gaga”?