Hiromoto Ida addresses the audience at the Prestige Lakeside Resort on Monday night after being named the 2012 cultural ambassador for the City of Nelson.

Dance takes the spotlight as cultural ambassador is revealed

Nelson's new cultural ambassador has been unveiled.

Nelson’s new cultural ambassador has been unveiled.

Cultural development officer Joy Barrett and Stephanie Fischer chair of the city’s Cultural Development Commission announced that Hiromoto Ida will be the 2012 ambassador in the category of dance.

“[Ida] is a nationally recognized director, choreographer and performer,” said Barrett. “His work is dramatic, clever and above all humourous and has received critical acclaim at international dance festivals.”

Ida – who is originally from Tokyo – studied drama and performance in Japan before moving to Vancouver in 1987 where he joined the Karen Jamieson Dance Company.

Barrett said that Ida has been a strong supporter of dance in Nelson and has held many workshops.

“In short, we are very lucky to have him,” she said. “And we are delighted to offer him this well deserved honour.”

Ida joked that at 50 years old he didn’t understand why he was being awarded the title.

“More young people should be getting it,” he said with a laugh. “My body is getting really wrecked these days.”

Ida reflected on how his father didn’t understand his passion for dance.

“My father used to tell me when I was in junior high when I decided to attend an acting school, he said ‘Hiro you have to get a real job,’ and I said ‘Dad this is great. You don’t know anything this is just so deep.'”

Ida said that now at 50 he thinks maybe he should have listened to his dad.

The commission also thanked last year’s ambassador Anne DeGrace for the important role she played in championing the city’s cultural diversity.





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