Maija Garcia is a Cuban-American director, choreographer, educator and producer based in Harlem. Garcia’s signature storytelling integrates live music and interactive design with visceral movement. Most recently, she served as Director of Movement for Spike Lee’s latest film CHIRAQ, and directed Salsa Mambo Cha Cha Cha with music director Isaac Delgado in Havana, Cuba. She choreographed the new hit musical Cuba Libre at Artist Repertory Theater in Portland OR, and Another Word for Beauty by Jose Rivera at The Goodman Theater in Chicago, IL.
Creative Director of FELA!, Garcia worked alongside Bill T. Jones as Associate Choreographer to develop the Tony award-winning musical off-Broadway (2008), on Broadway (2009), at National Theater of London (2010), and in Lagos Nigeria (2011). Creative Director of the international touring production of FELA! (2011-2013), she also directed and choreographed Fela! The Concert for the Adelaide Arts Festival in Australia and the Auckland Arts Festival in New Zealand (2015).
Garcia’s stage collaborations include The Legend of Yauna (2013), featuring Zap Mama at BAM Fisher, Fats Waller Dance Party (2011/2012) with composers Jason Moran and Meshell N’degeocello (2011) at The Gatehouse Harlem Stage , Kennedy Center, and San Francisco & Chicago Jazz Festivals. Garcia directed Ghosts of Manhattan, an Organic Magnetics production (2012); Musical staging for Neighbors (2010) directed by Niegel Smith at the Public Theater; Choreographed Not Wanted on the Voyage (2010) directed by Amanda Dehnert at Northwestern University; created YaYa Dreams A Future (2010) at New York City SummerStage (2009); directed Volcano’s Birthrights (2008). Garcia’s film and TV credits include choreography for Seun Kuti’s music video RISE; Angelique Kidjo’s Move on Up, PBS stations Special and BET Honors; Fela! television commercial; special features on Colbert Report, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, The View and a staging of Fela’s Zombie on So You Think You Can Dance, Canada.
In 2006, Garcia founded Organic Magnetics to engage cross-cultural dialogue and sustainable practice in the arts. She devises original work, producing live installations to generate urban folklore for the future. OM theater arts curriculum engages students in a transformative creative process. Garcia’s work evokes a spiritual connection among artistic collaborators and audiences, encouraging interaction and participation. Ghosts of Manhattan, 1512-2012 an interactive history took audiences on a walk through installation through 500 years of NYC history in Fort Tryon Park in 2012. Co-writer and Director of I Am New York: Juan Rodriguez at El Museo del Barrio, Garcia developed the story of New York’s first immigrant as a stage play and is currently adapting I Am New York as a graphic novel.
Garcia is the artistic director of the SBI performing arts program at A. Philip Randolph High School in Harlem, an adjunct professor at CUNY City College Department of Theater and Speech and holds a BA in Sustainable Development from the California Institute of Integral Studies. She is a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC) and is represented by Olivier Sultan (CAA). www.organicmagnetics.com.