Photography by Andres Sebastian
Luisa Innisfree Martinez
November 26, 1988
Born to immigrant parents of Chile and Yugoslavia, Luisa Martinez began her life in Manhattan, New York. She studied ballet at 3rd Street Music School in the East Village. She performed at PS 19, her elementary school’s talent show. She danced and sang old 50’s songs while her father played guitar. These occurrences are minor in the realm of a performing artist, yet nonetheless, they are memories, deeply ingrained. They are reminders of how we choose and continue to do the things we love.
When her parents departed NYC, Luisa began a new dance home in Hanover, Pennsylvania. More recitals, training and growing up in a small town where they are known for making UTZ pretzels. But after 6 years it was time to uproot again and find another home- Baltimore, Maryland. Here Luisa was introduced to different styles of dance; it was here where she began her career in modern dance. Morton Street Dance School, a marvelous place to dance in Baltimore City.
With 6 more years of dance under her belt, Luisa decided to move herself, this time to Athens, Ohio. During her time at Ohio University Luisa’s focus shifted heavily to choreography and her senior work was performed in the American College Dance Festival. When she received her B.F.A in Dance Performance and Choreography she traveled again, this time back to a old place called home- NYC.
During her time in Brooklyn, NY Luisa found a inspiring teacher named Shannon Hummel. She is the artistic director of a non-profit organization called Cora Dance. This dance school implements a pay-what-you-can policy, something that not only helps students train in the arts but brings a community of people closer together. After several years of working at Cora, Luisa carried on, taking with her many lessons learned. She continued her passion of teaching at different schools in the NYC area.
Luisa is grateful to have perform with several dance companies in New York, including two companies which she became a company member with- INSPIRIT and Emotions Physical Theater. NYC is a hub for dance training, but her favorite place to learn and grow as a mover was at the STREB warehouse in Brooklyn. Luisa's work is seen as athletic, comedic and very theater-based; her favorite places to perform are outdoors, during informal events, or even, a crowded bar.
Another 6 years have passed and Luisa is feeling restless again, searching for another home. She has decided to embark on an adventure to tour the east coast and continue to dance in several cities with as many people as she can.
So onward, to new adventures...and new homes...