The Heroine’s Journey of Gaia Santuccio

What is the best thing that I love about my work? My work is like an extra limb of mine, it’s like the extension of my own body. It is a silent communicating system with myself, a way to release. When I dance, move or go on my rope I mentally face all my trouble and accept it. It is a way to deal with life, some sort of meditation. It helps me being at peace when even the worst happens. Plus, it allows me to travel and see the world. I feel lost without it.

What is my idea of perfect happiness? Well, well.. that’s a hard question. What is perfect happiness? I believe you can live day by day appreciating everything you’ve got with positivity and a smile on your face. That is a good way to train yourself to be happy no matter what. For me, perfect happiness is appreciating/understanding youself, self loving and self respect.

What is my greatest fear? It used to be lonliness when I still didn’t know myself enough. Now… it is a very hard question. I don’t feel scared of anything particularly.. maybe this is what it scares me! Other than that, I have a phobia for pidgeons… !!!

What is the trait that I most deplore in myself? If I love someone, I would give them the world. But at times,I get upset if I don’t receive back as much as I give out. I used to believe I was so giving only for the other person’s best. But I am coming to terms that probably unconsciously, I do that selfishly, because it makes me feel good with myself and that’s it. So I am trying to learn to give the right amounts so I am always happy when I get it back.

What is my greatest extravagance? Love.

On what occasion would I lie? Unfortunately, to protect myself. But also, to save somebody from unneeded pain.

What is the influence of role models, in my work and in my life? That would be women that made history for being strong, independent and quite masculine. The first name that pops up in my head is Frida Kahlo. Her inner pain, her strength and artistic development are so inspiring both personally and professionally. Accepting your body, your pains and who you are and using them as tools to generate more work. What doesn’t kill you, only makes you stronger.

What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work? When i get injured and I can’t train. It has happened a few times in the last 2 years. I had an abdominal hernia operation that stopped me from training for 6 months. I had to re-invent myself putting what I loved the most aside. It was hard and painful.

When and where was I the happiest, in my work? When I deviced my first solo piece of work for my graduation and for the first time I spoke on stage and in English. Being a movement based artist, I used to be scared of speaking on stage. When I managed to put that barrier down, it felt like I had the world in my hands and it opened so many doors for future ideas. A new approach to my work.

If I could, what would I change about myself? My distraction. I sometimes tend to get distracted when people talk to me. I might see something or I might get a thought and my mind travels to a parallel world. This upsets people around me because they believe I am not interested in what they are saying and I can’t explain why i do that.

What is my greatest achievement in work? My job is about training hard, creating but also networking and being a good manager for yourself. I am proud of how much I achieved in the past few years all on my own and where I got to with my own strength and nobody’s help. I am managing to do what I love and travel the world. That is for me the greatest achievement. Working became a way of living and taught me a lot about self respect and self loving.

What is my most inspirational location, in my city? The sea. I love sitting and watching it for hours. And think. It brings me peace. This is the reason why when I move to a new place, automatically the first thing I do is to find water: sea, lake or a river.

What is my favourite place to eat and drink, in my city? I left home when I was 16 and I traveled since. When I go back home though, grandma’s food is the best. Recently, I love the combo sushi and white wine.

Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime? My greatest fans would be my mom, dad and grandma. They always followed me and encouraged me to get the best out of me, both as a person and artist. My partner in crime and my fan too is my sister. She is my sister, a second mom and a best friend all at once. She nearly is the reflection of me and viceversa. Only one look and we know!

Whom would I like to work with in the future? I have been working solo for a long time now, so I would love to find or start a new contemporary circus company to share and develop ideas within a group. I also miss training with my ex acro partner. It would be great to continue collaborating with him again.

What project, in the nearby future, am I looking forward to work on? I have been moving and travelling around a lot, I am currently looking for some stability to finish a work in progress I started 2 years ago. It used to be called Tangled but it is now evolving to The contortions of my mind. It is a theatre, circus and dance one woman show about 30 minutes long.

How can you contact me? Website: gaiact.wix.com/gaiasantuccio Instagram: gaia.performer Facebook: Gaia – Performance artist Email: gaiact@hotmail.it

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