Artist Statement + Choreographic Process
My work transports both the audience and the performer to captivating worlds. I characteristically create dark, mysterious atmospheres that elicit apprehensive curiosity from the viewer and intense concentration from the dancer. I have always been drawn to the odd, the frightful, the peculiar, the ominous – anything that creates chilling excitement. Fear causes us to become intensely aware of ourselves and our surroundings, and this heightened level of awareness is a key attribute in the creation and execution of my work. In addition, my experiences with a myriad of psychological disturbances that have both heightened and dampened my consciousness heavily influence the content of my artistic voice. These two factors – my proclivity for horror and my background – generate my movement lexicon, which is often distorted, idiosyncratic, bold, and sensorial.
I am interested in the visceral experience of dance. While form and technique are identifiable within my work, I am more concerned with the particular sensations that dance gives the performer. To accomplish this, I generate movement from within, paying special attention to the way something makes me feel. Contrasting sensations of tension and relaxation, urgency and refrain, and chaos and control are omnipresent. There is an explosiveness that occurs within the body when transitioning from bound to boundless that I find exhilarating for both the performer and the audience. I am always searching for new ways to electrify the body, the mind, and the eye.
I am attracted to intuitive, authentic movers who are capable of maintaining various dynamics and impetuses within the body simultaneously. I seek dancers who possess an inner drive and energy that is readily transferrable to their bodies. Honesty in movement helps create the humanistic approach I have towards dance and choreography. However, I also enjoy challenging my dancers. I commonly utilize movers who are foreign to my style, lexicon, and philosophy. In this way, I collaboratively work with my cast to not only accomplish my vision, but to broaden their understanding of themselves.
My process shifts depending on the nature of the work. There is usually an event, a research subject, or another piece of art that inspires me to create. I blend these elements together to create a rich basis for choreographic research and development. For instance, I frequently pull aesthetic and conceptual inspiration from film and literature because of the evocative situations these two mediums have the ability to create. I select music that stimulates all of the senses through pulses, undulations, repetitions, and hard-hitting notes. Impactful life experiences ranging from trauma to celebration all have their place in my work. On occasion, I will delve into subjects of scientific or philosophical research as a way to bring about movement and evoke meaning.
The means by which the work is created differs, as well. One piece may call for movement generated entirely by me while another may benefit from collaboration with the cast. I like to confront my choreographic habits by challenging myself to create in unfamiliar ways that expand my capabilities. A major goal of mine is to cultivate artistic and personal growth for my cast and myself. Not only does this inform my artistic practice, but it aids in the unearthing of my true artistic voice. Through experimentation, I have found that allowing for communal discovery of movement leads to a greater and more meaningful choreography than one that was formed under a monocratic rule.