Ishida Dance Company Founder Brett Ishida shines a spotlight on her favorite venues in the Seaholm District.
By Chantal Rice, Photos by Niko Hernandez
Brett Ishida’s work keeps her on her toes. The classic-ballet-trained dance authority became enamored with the craft as a little girl while growing up in California and trained tirelessly, eventually becoming so adept that she accepted positions as a lauded performer with companies such as the Boston Ballet, the Oregon Ballet Theatre and Les Grands Ballets Canadiens. Ishida’s love of dance led to an accomplished career touring the world as a sought-after choreographer.
But despite her success, Ishida wanted more, earning a bachelor’s degree in literature then a master’s degree in Montessori education. With a focus on performing-arts education, her Montessori teaching career took her from California to Greece. Ultimately, she settled in Austin, and in the spring of 2019, she brought her two loves—dance and education—together with the founding of Ishida, her local contemporary dance company, which also aims to serve diverse adult and at-risk youth populations with free educational dance-movement workshops.
A resident of the Seaholm District in downtown Austin, Ishida shares her favorite neighborhood spots and why they’re special to her.
600A N. Lamar Blvd.
“As [I am] an avid music fan of almost any genre, Waterloo Records is a musical oasis for me with extremely knowledgeable and helpful staff. Along with its extensive collections of music and films, musicians frequent the store to play live, which is always a treat.”
404A W. Second St.
“La Condesa has been crafting thoughtful, high-quality dishes since before Austin had a food scene. It’s welcoming and lively, and I love taking visitors there. It’s quintessential Austin.”
JUAN PELOTA CAFÉ
400 Nueces St. (inside Mellow Johnny’s Bike Shop)
“Juan Pelota is an industrial cafe inside a bike shop with spacious community tables and a friendly Austin vibe. It’s a place where I enjoy drinking chai or smoothies and conducting morning meetings.”
TRUE FOOD KITCHEN
222 West Ave., suite HR100
“True Food dishes are always delicious and healthy. I enjoy its vibrant and congenial atmosphere.”