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Echoing Passages Collaborative

The Echoing Passages Collaborative is a group of South Dakota artists led by dancer and coreographer Sara Olivier. The group of artists created performance works inspired by The Sculpture Project. Dance, film, poetry, and music came together to communicate our collective stories surrounding the Black Hills and Badlands—the same natural and cultural histories that inspired Masayuki Nagase's Passage of Wind and Water.

The Collaborative created opportunities for the community to  become involved in the artistry through free workshops, small perfomances and readings at public events, and by submitting their writings to be incorporated into two collaborative choral poems.  Watch “A Passage of Wind and Water: The Badlands” choral poem.

Watch the final Echoing Passages video

View more Echoing Passages Collaborative videos


Meet the Artists

SARA OLIVIER | Choreographer

Sara Olivier

Sara studied English, dance, and education at South Dakota State University.  She was dance faculty at Expanding Harmony Dance Studio and Company in Brookings, SD, where she studied before training at New Mexico State University’s Dance Department. Sara’s performance and choreography credits include theatres, dance companies, and collaborative productions. While teaching at the Academy of Dance Arts, Rapid City, she directs a student company, and has choreographed for the Black Hills Symphony and Orchestra, Rapid City Public Libraries, and Main Street Square.  She lives in Rapid City with her son, Henry, and husband Austin. 


RANDAL IVERSON | Cinematographer

Randal IversonRandal grew up on a ranch in the plains of North Dakota.  He studied photography at Black Hills State University and has worked for a variety of national and South Dakota companies including National Geographic Television, South Dakota Tourism, and The Sanford Underground Research Facility.  The Black Hills American Advertising Federation has awarded him for his commercial work.  Randal currently produces commercials and pursues other artistic projects.  He has a particular love for the Black Hills and Badlands that surround his home in Rapid City, SD.




Christine Steward-NunezChristine Stewart-Nuñez studied writing and literature at the University of Northern Iowa, Arizona State University, and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Author of five poetry collections, she also writes creative nonfiction. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and has won several awards including The Lindenwood Review's Lyric Essay Contest (2014), the Briar Cliff Review's Nonfiction Prize (2011), and notable essay in Best American Essays 2012. Stewart-Nuñez began her teaching career at Tarsus American College in Turkey and is currently an associate professor at South Dakota State University.


BRYAN AKIPA | Composer

Bryan AkipaMember of the Sisseton Wahpeton Sioux Tribe, Army veteran, elementary teacher, visual and performing artist, Bryan Akipa is an award winning traditional Native American flute player. His CDs have been nominated for several Native American Music Awards including Best Flutist and Best Male Artist. Bryan was a featured player on Mary Louis Defender’s My Relatives Say, which won the 2000 NAMA for Best Spoken Word recording.  Bryan is internationally known for his craftsmanship of traditional flutes. His performances and artwork inform others about his history and heritage.




Heidi CarlsonHeidi has studied dance at the Academy of Dance Arts for over 13 years and will pursue a dance degree at the University of Wyoming this coming fall with a dance scholarship. She has also attended master classes by TU, Mark Morris Dance Group, Axis Dance Company, and Repertory Dance Theatre.  Heidi has created dances for benefit performances and enjoys using her gifts to help others. Heidi shared that this project has greatly impacted the way she thinks about dance.  





Hannah SorestadHannah is 15 years old and has been dancing for 12 years at the Academy of Dance Arts.  She has attended master classes with PIlobolus, Ballet Magnificat, Mark Morris Dance Group, TU Dance, River North Dance, and Axis Dance Company.  After high school, she hopes to study dance and physical therapy or sports medicine. Hannah also creates dances for benefit performances.  She loves to dance outdoors and found the Badlands especially inspiring. 




 KARAH HAUG | Dancer

Karah HaugKarah will perform in the collaborative’s next chapter and has been working as an understudy and choreography assistant.  At 15, Karah has been dancing at the Academy  for 10 years and plans to study chemistry and biology after high school.  She has attended master classes from the Mark Morris Dance Group, River North Dance, and at the University of Wyoming.  Karah dances to express and looks forward to making an impact through collaborative arts in the community. 




 LILLY HILT | Dancer

Lilly Hilt11-year-old Lilly has been dancing at the Academy of Dance Arts for 8 years and recently joined the collaborative to perform in “New Roots.”  She dances to express and shared that she feels honored to be a part of the project.  






News & Announcements

Collaborative poem video, The Sculpture Project Blog, September 25, 2014

Theater production celebrates Sculpture Project, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, June 30, 2014

Echoing Passages at Art Night Downtown, The Scupture Project Facebook Page, June 16, 2014

Echoing Passages Rehearsal, The Sculpture Project Facebook Page, April 13, 2014

Choral poem taking shape, The Sculpture Project Blog, April 2, 2014

Sculpture Project call for writers, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, March 28, 2014 

Top ten things we learned while dancing in the Badlands, The Sculpture Project Blog, March 24, 2014

YMCA Youth Outreach, The Sculpture Project Facebook Page, February 17, 2014

Badlands Dance, The Sculpture Project Facebook Page, October 1, 2013

Writing Workshop with Christine Stewart-Nunez, The Sculpture Project Facebook Page, September 22, 2013

Poets Gather at Main Street Square Sculpture Project, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, September 24, 2013

Passage of Wind and Water Collaborative, The Sculpture Project Blog, May 16, 2013

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