University of Victoria Practicum student Lori Hamar
Lori Hamar is a contemporary dance artist who has lived on the unceded Swenghung (Songhees) First Nation territory commonly known as Victoria, BC since 1990. She is an occupier who was born in Northern Alberta, on the original territories of Beaver, Sarcee, Sekani and Blackfoot peoples, to a second generation Ukrainian immigrant family. Her choreographic works focus on her perception of the continually developing inner landscapes her life designs. Later in her career at the age of forty she engaged in the facilitation of improvisational dance for preschoolers and entered Early Childhood Care and Education training at Camosun Community College, inspired to better understand young children. She is continually swept away by the far-reaching implications the early learning and care field presents. Her work in movement with young children continues to reveal some of the most invigorating aspects of her chosen art form.
Lori is actively involved in Biospheric Art Practice, deepening her study of inner landscape in choreographic works. She facilitates movement with preschoolers and has practiced as an educator in various childcare settings. The Camosun College ECCE program engaged her to teach prospective educators dance workshops where she taught annually until 2016.
I have come to a place where I value my skills and expertise as an early learning and care provider. I have a strong sense of commitment to the profession and I strive to achieve best practice standards in my work. I also embrace my skills as a dance artist. This attribute affords a specialty in working with children that research has proven to be of immense value. I strongly believe there is a lot of work to be done to integrate relevant dance movement with the early learning and care profession.
She attends University of Victoria, on the traditional territory of theWS’ANEC’ (Saanich), Lkwungen (Songhees), Wyomilth (Esquimalt) peoples of the Coast Salish Nation, in the Bachelor of Child, Family, and Youth Care program to work toward studies in a Master’s program. Her goal is to research dance supporting the healthy development of human beings. She endeavours to engage with the world as an artist, provoking thought through dance experience. Her studies open her to more nuanced understandings of the world. As she regards her social location and practice of white privilege, she strives to change her perceptions and behaviour.
Lori’s focus and energy has allowed her to experience the integration of contemporary dance and early childhood education within a practice. Many times direct connections between work in early learning and care and dance have astounded her. A mutual give and take occurs, where physical knowing and cognitive learning constantly build upon one another.
Lori has been invited into various communities to explore and co-create dance. She has received the honour to dance and choreograph with diverse abilities groups, perform and co-direct movement involving languages from all over the world, and create and perform a piece that invited audience members to talk about ‘that one pair of shoes that made you feel like you’.