Story by Taylor Odishaw-Dyck.
Photos by Will Geier.
I sat down with local hip-hop dancer Melissa Buluran to talk about her sprouting success and recent personal revelations as an emerging urban artist.
I first met her back in April at Late Night at the Plaza, where she unveiled a vibrant dance routine to Jerry Folk’s remix of Lose It by Oh Wonder.
Her positive energy was felt by everyone who met her that night, as she actively channelled her refreshing sense of purpose and belonging through her art and personality.
So, I naturally wanted to know what makes her tick and where it all began…
How did you first get into dancing?
My mom put me in classes when I was about three years old. I started off in ballet, jazz, lyrical and musical theatre. But, hip-hop really stuck to me.
What motivates you to push forward in the arts?
I push forward for the love of dance. It’s my happy place. Dance is a form of meditation, and, for me, it’s important to keep doing what makes me happy.
Who are some personal role models of yours?
My parents come first, but I find inspiration from everyone in some way or form. When I’m observing people, I feel something like a flicker inside of me when I watch another person doing what they love; it fuels me to do what I love.
Could you tell me about any personal revelations you’ve had recently?
I’ve been all about accepting myself for who I am, and loving myself. Realizing that when I can do that, I can pass it onto other people. When I channel it into things like dance, it helps me to speak – and be – at the level of love.
Do you have any advice for young dancers or artists?
Keep going, be fearless in doing what you love. Don’t worry about what other people think. Remember that it’s your journey; it’s your pace. Don’t compare yourself to others. Really honour what state you’re in, but always challenge yourself to grow within your craft.
Take risks, have a vision, and be confident. Practice, practice, practice, and make sure it comes from the heart.
Buluran’s relentless pursuit of her passion is quite evident in the amount of notable events she has performed at this year. She appeared at Astral Harvest, Burning Man, Circle Calgary, and Global Fest and does not intend to slow down any time soon.
Buluran appears to be empathic – in the best sense of the word – as she traverses through Calgary’s ever-changing arts scene with open eyes and ears.
Her acute ability to keep rhythm with the music she loves, as well as with the people she moves with, puts her one step ahead of the curve.