When you think about world changers you might think about someone that is a house hold name. Contrary to this idea there are a plethora of World Changers doing what they love, where they are and making impact in ways that subtly move mountains within the heart! Belinda Becker is one of those people.
Music heals, movement heals, teaching heals, writing heals, a healer heals because that is their gift, that is their reason for being here in this world. Healing and giving back is an elegant by-product of the lovely Belinda. Sit in a room where she spins her magic and you will be lulled into a world of transformation. Read what she writes and you almost envy the beauty that her pen holds. Watch her dance and get swept away in the creative and spiritual force that she embodies. The world is a better place because we have souls like hers creating space for magic to wash away some of the darkness.
We asked Belinda a few questions:
WHAT WAS YOUR REASON OR REASONS FOR CHOOSING MUSIC (BEING A DJ) AND DANCE AS YOUR CREATIVE EXPRESSION IN LIFE? (CAREER)
I didn’t choose them. They chose me. Coming from Jamaica, my household was always filled with music. My dad collected records and we were constantly having dance parties. I guess that is where it all started. I graduated from the University of Florida with a BA in journalism and right out of college I moved to New York. Not being able to find a job at a newspaper or magazine and running out of money, I got offered a job in a nightclub, Area, as a bus boy/waiter. One night, the DJ did not show up and the manager asked if there was anyone who could play. I offered my services. I got some quick lessons from my boyfriend at the time, Serge Becker and from DJ Johnny Dynell, and I started the following week and I have not stopped. I love being able to touch people with my music. When at the end of a set, someone says to me, I came in here depressed but you lifted my mood, or thank you, I got to escape from my problems for a few hours, it makes it all worthwhile.
Since I loved dancing as a little girl and was always taking classes, when I came to NY I decided to explore the African diaspora dances. My spirit settled on Afro-caribbean dance and I have been taking classes and performing for over 25 years now. It’s a beautiful way to communicate without words. I’ve always known that I was a creative being. I think it is something you always do know deep down inside… it just depends on whether you act on it or not. I feel as if both DJ’ing and dance are the truest expressions of myself.
SOCIAL ACTIVISM PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN YOUR DANCE, HOW DID YOU COME TO EXPRESS THIS AND WHY? DO YOU CONSIDER YOURSELF AND ACTIVIST?
It’s hard for me to see all the injustice in society and not do anything about it. And since historically, music and dance have been used in so many struggles for justice and liberation, my dance community and I decided to use them to try to effect change. We’ve done flashmobs to protest Stop and Frisk, we have participated in many marches, we have done dance circle fundraisers for different causes. As an artist I think it is imperative that we reflect the times in which we live. I care about the world and what happens in it, if that makes me an activist then I guess I am one.
BEING A MOTHER, DO YOU THINK WE ARE DOING ENOUGH TO EMPOWER AND EDUCATE OUR CHILDREN TO RISE HIGHER AND BE PROUD OF WHO THEY ARE?
I know my friends and I are. I look at our children and I see engaged, smart, caring socially conscious human beings. But is it enough? I say we must all do more especially now. We are at a critical point in time. We need to do more to make sure ALL of our children on this planet are empowered. We are our brother’s keeper.
WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF AND YOUR ART IN THE NOT SO DISTANT FUTURE?
I really hope to one day open a community center/bed and breakfast somewhere warm and tropical where I can teach dance, continue to Dj, give back to the local community and live sustainably.
DO YOU HAVE ANY ARTISTS OR MENTORS THAT YOU LOOK TO FOR GUIDANCE AND INSPIRATION? IF SO WE’D LOVE TO KNOW THEM.
Yes, three of my dance teachers have been very influential in my life. Pat Hall, Baba Richard Gonzalez and Ron Brown. They have taught me many things about life… love, joy, community, dedication, kindness, empathy, personal and social responsibility… just to name a few. They have kept me grounded and hopeful in increasingly chaotic times.
WHAT DOES THE PHRASE NEVAH BLACK DOWN STIR UP IN YOU?
It means be proud of who you are, never try to make yourself small in the presence of other people and stand in your power unapologetically.
BELINDA BECKER IS… finally becoming the woman she always wanted to be.
CHECK OUT MORE WITH BELINDA BECKER BELOW!
An all-encompassing maze-like environment in which LEDs form colored lines of light when reflected off translucent walls, confounding any sense of orientation. The viewers, simultaneously inside the piece, are invited to use hand-held LED lights to make their own moving light-lines. During performances, dancers wearing lights move throughout and further activate the artwork, creating their own moving lines of light. The installation will be presented at Five Myles Gallery in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, from February 9th to March 16, 2019. It will be available for viewing during gallery hours, Thursdays through Sundays, 11-6, and collaborative dance events will be held on special evenings. Schedule to come.