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MAC Staff Spotlight: Dori Myer

Please give a warm welcome to our newest Teaching Artist, Dori! Dori recently began teaching two new programs for MAC: After School Improv and Adult Improv. Read more about Dori's relationship with the arts below:



1. When did you first realize you were a performer or wanted to be a performer?

I started taking dance classes when I was around 5 years old. I also tried swimming lessons at that time, but those made me scream in terror. I kept dancing, I never learned to swim. At the time, my sisters and even parents were all taking dance classes, so it was a family affair. We would always goof around at the dinner table and my parents usually had our 10lb camcorder on a shoulder to catch the nonsense. In short, we are a family of hams. When I got to high school, I joined the improv comedy team and that was the performance art that stuck with me most consistently for two decades.


2. What is your favorite art medium and why is it your favorite?

I’ve dabbled in a lot of arts over time. I tap danced as a child, majored in creative writing in college, performed improvised comedy for all of my adulthood, created and sold landscape and collage photography at art fairs, was a cameraperson for local public access TV, sculpted creatures out of plastic... I’m not skilled at all of them, and I cycle through what speaks to me at any given time, but I need a creative outlet, whatever it is. Trying different disciplines has helped keep my mind engaged and allowed me to meet wonderful people from so many walks of life.


3. If you could learn any arts medium, what would it be? Why?

I would love to learn how to draw in the realism style. It seems like it would be so satisfying to accurately recreate a visual scene or a figure from scratch. So far my best attempts have been digitally using simple applications like Paint. Apparently, I’m more comfortable wielding a computer mouse than a pencil.

4. What are you most looking forward to in teaching Improv for Mono Arts Council?

I’m excited to help people be silly, unselfconscious, and make friends. The best, most welcoming community in my life, wherever I have lived, has been improv comedy, and I have always made lifelong friends in it. I want to help build that community for people of all ages in Mono County, especially for those who maybe aren’t the most athletic and want to find another way to build friendships.


5. Why do you think the arts are so important right now? The pandemic showed the world what I have always known – we crave art when we are stressed. While the scientists got to work studying the virus, the artists got to work creating and entertaining – and we needed both types of thinkers. People began baking, photographing, sewing, making videos for social media– when we stayed inside, we watched art and we created art. Everybody needed it to feel connected, distracted, and productive. To me, this was a critical reminder of why we need STEAM in schools, not just STEM. The A is for Art and everybody engaged with it when the world was in turmoil.

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