The “Encore” stage

The late Dr. Gene Cohen talked about the four stages of older adulthood in his books and studies. The last stage of life he referred to as, the encore stage. This stage is not seen as the end, but a time to come to terms with what might be ahead. It is also a special time for elders to teach and give their legacy and story to those who are currently with them, listening…

Thank you to David Slater of Entelechy Arts in South London for writing this beautiful piece on the “encore” of  dear Ida Arbeit.

David Slater’s piece on the “encore” of Ida


Remembering Ida

We miss you, Ida.

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Ida, her memory and her gifts will be with us forever!!

 When I first met Ida I was amazed that a person so tiny could pack such a punch.  Ida was larger than life when she collaborated with Maria on choreography and coached the Kairos Intergenerational Dance Company at rehearsals.  When she spoke, we listened and we grew as a dance company and as individuals.  When she shared the stories of her life and her positive attitude, we learned.  We learned about caring for others, we learned about growing as artists, we learned about looking at life joyfully every single day.  Ida touched the hearts and minds of everyone who met her and her life lessons are precious.  I know that for Ida her last years were enriched by her association with Kairos.   For Kairos, these past years with Ida were enriched even more.  As a former dancer with Kairos Dance Company and as a volunteer in Kairos’ Dancing Heart program and a Kairos Board member, I know intimately what Ida gave to all of us who are committed to bringing the arts and its benefits into the community.  We will miss Ida deeply but she will always be remembered. 
I am giving a donation to Kairos in memory of Ida Arbeit for all she did to help us fulfill our mission – Sharing the joy of dance and unleashing its power to nurture and heal.  I hope you will consider doing the same.  Click here to help Kairos continue its work in the community and transform the lives of individuals through movement and dance. ~ Faith  

Jesse, Ida, Carla and Moses



A tribute to Ida

Ida Arbeit passed away Tuesday morning, March 15, 2011 in St.Paul Minnesota. Exactly a week ago Ida was dancing, sharing stories and performing as usual with consummate skill and fabulous timing with, as she called us “her dance company,” Kairos Dance Theatre. Ida, Irv Williams and Kairos performers were being filmed for the Twin Cities Public Television show, “Minnesota Original.” Ida wowed us all once again- even if she was in a wheel chair. She thanked us that day, many times. She told us how much it meant to her that we danced with her. And we tried to tell her, many times, how much she had gifted us- and how much we loved her.

Ida, I am so grateful that I have had the honor to collaborate with you as a fellow dancer and choreographer these past few years. You have brought your expertise, your perceptive eye and your insatiable hunger for making good, strong dances, and you have sheared them generously with me and “your company.” You have blessed us with your great laugh and your stories that make it clear to us that you have lived your life and the people in it with much passion. Your strong desire to be deeply engaged in every moment of your life inspires me to reach for the seemingly impossible- as both an artist and a mortal.

We already miss you Ida. Thank you for sharing your legacy as a dancer/choreographer and deep lover of life. You have made a big difference in my life and I know in the lives of many, many people.

With love and gratitude,

Maria and your dance company,

Kairos Dance Theatre

We encourage you to share your favorite Ida moment here, on our blog and Facebook page.

Ida’s 101st Birthday Party & Give to the MAX!

As you know, last week we had our weekly rehearsal with Ida!
We danced, discussed life in NY, and talked about our upcoming performances of “Take Me Back to Hip Harlem”!
We talked with Ida about her 101st birthday party we will be celebrating on December 4th after the performance. She was very excited!

If you would like to support moments like this and performances like our upcoming ones in December…Today is the PERFECT DAY to do so!!
It is GIVE to the MAX Day! is hosting an event that raised over $14,000,000 for MN Charities & NonProfits!

If you’d like to contribute to our upcoming performance and Ida’s 101st Birthday click here!

If you’d like to give to The Dancing Heart program in which each week we are surprised and delighted by the vital engagement of each participant through dance, music and story… click here

Thank you for your ongoing support and contributions to Kairos Dance Theatre.

We can’t express how grateful we are for your encouragement.


Kairos Dance Theatre

Take Me Back to Hip Harlem rehearsal

We are just three weeks away from our concert series at Intermedia Arts in Minneapolis on December 4 and 5 featuring centenarian, Ida Arbeit and Mr. Smooth, Irv Williams on sax with his Quartet.

Rehearsals are in full swing. On Friday we were at Ida’s Assisted Living site, rehearsing in our dance space, the TV room.

Ida, who is watching a run-through of the piece, “Body and Soul,” says, “you look like you are in a Munch painting, about to scream.” A bit blunt, but totally right on. We listened to her critique, softened the arm reaches, which gave the movement a more lush quality. Who says you can’t make valuable contributions when you are more than 100 years?

Tickets are on sale! Take Me Back to Hip Harlem!

Come one, come all as we take you back to Harlem. . .

December 4 & 5 we will revisit the Harlem Renaissance – Take Me Back to Hip Harlem – with Ida Arbeit, Irv Williams, Peter Schimke, Fred Steele, Kevin Washington, Nancy Nair, Elinor Anderson-Genné, Jesse Neuman-Peterson, Danessa Snustad (guest choreographer) at Intermedia Arts on:

Saturday, December 4, 7:00 pm
Sunday, December 5, 3:00 pm

For more information on the event, here is the Press Release:
Take Me Back to Hip Harlem- Press Release
You can use our ticket sales tab on our website to purchase tickets ahead of time for $22.00 ($2 is for the processing fee).
To purchase tickets click here .

IMPORTANT: please contact Beth with any questions.
At the Performance on Saturday, December 4, we will be celebrating Ida Arbeit’s 101st birthday (December 7(d.o.b.)). If you’d like to participate in the festivities or to become more involved in making our production happen and to be listed in the program, please consider a gift of:

$10.00 will light a candle on Ida’s cake.
$50.00 – $100.00 will allow you to say “I’m with the band.”
$101.00 will include your name on Ida’s special birthday card
$500 + will give you front row seats (right behind the wheelchairs)
$1,000 + will give you a backstage pass
$5,000 + will make you a producer

Doors open at 6:40 pm! (Saturday)
And at 2:40 pm! (Sunday)

We hope to see you there, but until then…here’s something for the road trip back to Harlem…