Dance and Anthropology major Emi Donato switches gears from the fast-paced lifestyle at the College of Wooster to the relaxed, easy-going world of island living. Have no fear; dancers perform at all speeds!
Where in the world would you like to get lost?
Italy – it’s a fixation of mine. I’m part Italian, but we don’t celebrate it. I definitely want to go there one day.
What did you enjoy doing at age 10?
I enjoyed taking dance classes and making friendship bracelets.
If you were stranded on a lonely beach, what are the five things that you would want to have with you?
- 1) My Kindle so I can read and listen to music; I guess I’d need WiFi, too
- 2) Pen and paper
- 3) Sunscreen
- 4) Something to make fire
- 5) Something to collect water
Which pop music stars fascinate you?
Mumford and Sons, Arcade Fire and the Beatles. My dad played Beatles music when my sister and I were growing up, so the 3 of us have a Beatles connection.
Are you a morning person or a night person?
Here in Hawai‘i I’ve adjusted to my roommate’s early morning schedule. But there are the occasional nights when you don’t want to go to sleep and you end up spending 4 hours on the Internet.
Do you want to live to 100?
That’s a difficult question! I have a lot of anxiety about the way the world is going right now. If I’m happy, yes, I’d want to live to be 100, but there are a lot of variables to consider.
What’s special about your home school, College of Wooster in Ohio?
It’s so homey with only 2,000 students! Without the individual attention I received there I might not have known I could pursue my passions. I also like that College of Wooster emphasizes research. Most of my classes require research papers or projects which I enjoy doing.
What superpower do you wish you had?
Teleporting! I try to enjoy the journey from one place to the next, but I’d rather just get there.
Tell us something you hate doing.
I hate cutting my nails; it’s an annoyance. And I really hate listening to a voicemail that I don’t know who it’s from or what it’s about.
Tell us something you love doing and why.
I love meditating. It clears your mind, and I have a lot of thoughts! Meditating puts me in the moment.
What’s special about Hawaiʻi?
It’s so casual and much slower-placed than what I’m used to. For that reason it’s refreshing. Also, there are so many different communities coexisting in one place. Hawai‘i is a beautiful place, with warm weather, sunshine and occasional rain.
If you could have lunch with any three people (real or fictitious/from any time period/dead or alive), which three people would you choose and why?
This is hard to decide on, so I’ve got four people!
- 1) Katherine Dunham, one of the 1st Dance Anthropologists with a dance background.
- 2) Alice from Alice in Wonderland; or maybe Lewis Carroll; I appreciate the themes from the book, like personal development and questions about curiosity and things that don’t make sense
- 3) John Lennon; his music is fun and has a message. I’m curious about how celebrities live such a public and extravagant life but create messages in their work.
- 4) Sylvia Plath; I read the Bell Jar in 11th grade, and the way we connect to the main character’s pressures and struggles is both scary and fascinating.
Share one truth and one lie about your personality and let others guess which is what.
I don’t think it’s okay to lie in any manner.
I am bothered by having too many “things”.
If you were to write a book about yourself, what would you name it?
(After several minutes) My autobiography would be named I Wish My Hair Were Red, since I’m often wondering if I’m okay with the way my life is now or if it would be better if I could change something.
With what technology would you write a love letter?
Well, pen and paper, but I also think works of art, like a sketch or a dance, can express just as much!
What are your personal superstitions?
I was raised Catholic, but even though I don’t practice it anymore, I do pray to St. Anthony, the Patron Saint of Lost Things, and he pulls through! I also believe in Karma and déjà vu.
If you could eliminate one thing from your daily schedule, what would it be and why?
Doing my hair! It gets tangled and frizzy, and I have to work on it to keep it under control!
If you were to get a permanent tattoo done, what would it be and where?
I’d get Animus, which means courage and soul in Latin, in grey or black ink on my left wrist – the ‘m’ would be a heart; something to do with dance near my foot; and a quote from a Mumford and Sons song somewhere on my body.
If you could have an unlimited storage of one thing, what would it be?
Books and tea.
What is that one thing which makes you different?
I think about things in depth. Sometimes I’m afraid to share with others all my thoughts because they might think I’m crazy! I also appreciate differences between people.
What are you looking forward to doing while in Hawai‘i?
Hiking, watching the sunrise on top of Haleakala this weekend when I go to Maui with my friends, and going to the North Shore over Thanksgiving and seeing the contrast between the beach towns there and Honolulu.
What are you doing when you feel most alive?
I feel most alive when performing in some way, like dancing or acting and when experiencing some incredible act or piece of nature.
What Advice would you give to a new ASH student?
Be ready to experience life in a different way here; be ready to come at life from a different angle and with different goals from your normal life. Save up your money before arriving so you don’t have to worry about that once you get here, and be sure to take some sort of Hawaiian culture class.