Quixotic Fusion, flying from TEDxKC to the TED mainstage

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Sneak peek: Quixotic rehearsals at TED2012: Full Spectrum. February 27 – March 2, 2012. Long Beach, CA. Photo: James Duncan Davidson

Cross-posted from the TEDx Tumblr:

Kansas City-based dance troupe Quixotic Fusion performed at TEDxKC 2010 and 2011 before finding their way to the TED2012 stage (you can watch that performance on TED.com). During the conference, the TEDx Tumblr asked TEDxKC organizer Mike Lundgren how he found the out-of-this-world dance troupe, and what they were feeling after their performance:

How did you find Quixotic?

Quixotic is emblematic of Kansas City’s surge in arts and technology — they were “starving artists” with a penchant for performances on a grand scale when I first met them. They typically plowed whatever money they made from one event into even grander events to follow, including an ambitious project that had them dangling like sexy Spider-men (and -women) atop Kansas City’s Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.

Truthfully, it took little effort to convince Quixotic they were perfect for TEDx, and they brought the house down with their first TEDxKC performance in 2010. In an encore performance the following year they hacked an Xbox Kinect so a dancer could directly control music, animation and interaction — dimensionalizing Technology, Entertainment and Design and illuminating their path to the TED mainstage.

What was the reaction to their performance at your event?

One email I received from an audience member said: “Even as an experienced Quixotic fan, watching the simulcast from Quixotic’s hometown, we all had goosebumps from awe and pride throughout the four vignettes. Every time they perform, they ratchet up the performance another level. When it was all over we sat in stunned silence for several moments before we looked at each other and cheered.”

You’ve been speaking to the dancers a bit — what are they feeling right now?

I think when you toil at your craft for so long, and then one day your idols approach you to say how mesmerized and in awe they were by your performance — how can you help but not breathe that in and feel satisfied that you have shared something special? No question the troupe is in as much awe of the TED community as we feel towards them.