Pre-eminent American dancer, Martha Graham, once said, “Dance is the hidden language of the soul of the body.” A universal language, a visual language, it is one of the most liberating expressions of human form, a visual, soul-charged declaration like no other. Be it treacle-like and soft, or electrifying and brisk, live movement can cure all matter of ills – both mental and physical. Innately intimate, tender and emotive; ideas and emotions which are often difficult to articulate via linguistic forms such as speech and text (often because of psychological obstacles such as fear and loathing), find new life through the art of dance. Few mediums have such power to bridge this gap. It’s as if the rest of world falls away. It’s just you, and your body.
Sydney-based Contemporary dance crew, Des Fleurs, know this well. Founded in 2013, six girls came together with a mission to empower themselves – and others – through dance. Upon graduating from Sydney’s renowned Contemporary dance training centre, Ev & Bow, under the formidable mentorship of Sarah Boulter, they formed a female-only troupe which explores femininity, beauty and sisterhood. Hailing from diverse dance training, each Fleur harnesses their own unique style and genre to bring something different and beautifully idiosyncratic to the group. There’s the unique theatricality of Artistic Director, Forever Tupou, who choreographs the Fleur routines. There’s Chantelle Landayan’s work, which is peppered with both classic jazz and hip hop. Sami Jane is a practiced freestyler, while Alice Robinson brings an eclectic mix of contemporary dance. Sarah Vai is a passionate choreographer, and Allie Graham explores conceptual performance. It is all these distinctly unique elements which come to define Des Fleurs.
A deeply exploratory journey, the women continue to discover more and more about themselves through their art and music, but also use their craft to create positive, meaningful change. Supported by Reebok, Des Fleurs are doing exactly this, standing (or dancing!) in solidarity with the apparel giant to make impactful change. In the Reebok HER Collection, they are redefining beauty by reclaiming the female body, tapping their raw femininity and inspiring women to live boldly and transform themselves mentally, physically and socially through dance.
Dancing with GRAZIA, Reebok and the Fleurs show us that with a quick whip of an arm, a long leap, or a hip thrust you can grow and accept yourself for who you really are. They teach us that in order to feel better, you just have to move.