Kate Johnson, Adjunct Professor of Digital Media, co-directed, produced, and edited the feature documentary, "Mia, A Dancer's Journey,” which will be broadcast on Thursday, November 20th at 7 and 9 p.m. on PBS SoCal and on PBS stations nationally in 2015.
The film, co-directed with Maria Ramas, explores the life of Mia Slavenska, a celebrated ballerina of the 20th century. Caught in the maelstrom of 20th century political events, she was forced to leave her native Croatia at age 20 in order to continue to dance; at age 21, she was celebrated in Western Europe; and at age 23, she emigrated to the United States with the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo to escape a looming world war.
In her later years, she trained many of Southern California's acclaimed modern dance companies. Slavenska died believing she was forgotten by the dance world as well as in her native land of Croatia. In retracing her journey the filmmakers discover that ephemeral moments of art have power even in the midst of war and controversy. It is a story of triumph and loss, longings and returnings, and the strong desire to create work that overcomes barriers.