Iwona Gilarska – dancer, choreographer and dance teacher. Graduated from the University School for Physical Education in Poznań and a three-year Contemporary Dance Studio of Zamek Culture Centre in Poznań (1991–1995). She received Certificate of Professional Dancer granted by the Polish Actors Association (ZASP), officially recognized by the Minister of Culture and National Heritage (2004). In 1997 she completed a primary level acting course in the field of film acting at the Film Academy in London. Co-founder of Art Association "Kultywator 3Miejski" (2007) and board member of a Belgian association “RuimteAcademie”. (2007). She performed on stages in Poland ( Gdańsk, Warsaw, Poznań, Cracow, Kalisz, Lublin, etc.) and abroad (Czech Republic, Lithuania, Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Iceland, Japan, Singapore). Her dance technique is characterised by stressed physicality of movement and references to Eastern martial arts. Teacher of contemporary dance technique and improvisation as well as jazz/contemporary and free style. She created her own workshop programme, combining elements of dance and theatre, such as contemporary dance and improvisation, using composition methods and elementary acting tasks. Her workshop programme also included supporting techniques and styles, such as: yoga, jazz, afro and acrobatics.
In 1998–2001 she participated regularly in contemporary dance technique classes in Melissa Monteros and Wojciech Mochniej’s Gdańsk Dance Theatre and Leszek Bzdyl’s Dada von Bzdülöw Theatre. At the same time she took individual classes of composition and theatre. She took part in workshops and consultations with teachers from UK, USA, Belgium, Switzerland and Austria.
In the season 1999/2000 she worked with Kino Variatino Dance and Music Theatre (she took part in Anna Haracz’s Na krześle myślę inaczej). Her own solo Sto-krotki (2001) was awarded at the National Contemporary Dance Festival in Konin. Several times she was granted a cultural scholarship of the Municipal Office of Gdańsk (2003, 2007, 2008 – ”Kultywator 3Miejski”) and of Pomerania Voivodeship’s Local Government (2008, 2009, 2010 ”Kultywator 3Miejski”). In 2003 she created, together with Jacek Krawczyk, highly appreciated by dance critics W czerni i bieli (award for the best drama and audience award at the Dance Festival Polemiqi in Warsaw – 2005). Her next solo choreography wu:zi was presented at Gdańsk Dance Corporation (August 2004). In 2007 she created a project with live music W pół do godziny.
In 2003–2006 she cooperated with Okazjonalny Theatre (currently: Sopot Dance Theatre). She took part in the following group’s projects and performances: Signum Temporis, Viva la vida, and Quad. Version 6. She took part in several international projects, such as The Return of Houdini directed by H. Wein (Reykjavík, Iceland, 2005) INTERFACE II, choreography by Jacek Krawczyk (Goerlitz Tanzcompany; Tanz Art Festival, Goerlitz, Germany) and The Agency by David Cassel.
In 2009 she went on a two and half month long art and culture expedition to India (classes of classical Indian martial art kalaripayattui) and one month residence in Switzerland (Philippe Saire Company) granted by Pro Helvetia foundation. In August 2009 she produced Projekt walki in cooperation with Anna Jędrzejczak-Skutnik.
In 2010 she took part in Ciche ciało of Kino Variatino Dance and Music Theatre (Anna Haracz, Anna Krysiak/Katarzyna Julia Pastuszak). In cooperation with Roberto Olivan (Spain/Belgium) she produced Sekret Iwusia – a project for the residential programme work in progress by Klub Żak in Gdańsk. Premiere of her next solo project, Z nieba do ziemi, directed by Marcel Leemann, took place on 27–28 November.