Stephanie Bastos had always wanted to be a dancer. She worked hard toward that goal, starting when she was 5, and seemed on the verge of a career when she was 18 years old.
But one night she was a passenger in a car and the driver fell asleep. Bastos lost half of one leg in the resulting crash.
Dancing at first seemed like an impossible dream, but Bastos persevered and kept dancing.
This weekend, she’s dance in a piece called “Timeline.” It was created by Leymis Bolanos Wilmott, the artistic director of Sarasota Contemporary Dance. She and Bastos have been best friends since they were students at an art magnet middle school in Miami. They were both attending New World School of the Arts in Miami when that fateful crash happened.
In “Timeline,” Wilmott tells the story of Bastos’s life. It’s a biography written in movement rather than words.
If the piece sounds familiar, you may have seen a very short version, about 10 minutes long, that Bastos performed here a couple of years ago, when Sarasota Contemporary Dance was still called Fuzion Dance Artists. Wilmott and Bastos have since expended that piece into an evening-length work.