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 Post subject: CHOP SHOP: Bodies of Work 2016 Press Release
PostPosted: Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:57 am 

Joined: Thu Oct 11, 2001 11:01 pm
Posts: 26
Location: Edmonds, WA 98026
CHOP SHOP: Bodies of Work, A Contemporary Dance Festival
February 13th and 14th, 2016
The Theatre at Meydenbauer
Bellevue, WA

More info at

CHOP SHOP: Bodies of Work Announces 2016 Performing Artists

CHOP SHOP: Bodies of Work proudly announces the performing artists for the 2016 edition of the festival. Held February 13 and 14, 2016 at The Theatre at Meydenbauer, the festival presents extraordinary contemporary dance from Seattle and beyond, alongside master classes and free community outreach programs. Now in its ninth year, CHOP SHOP is recognized as one of the most important dance events of the year, serving up a unique sampling of contemporary dance from leading regional, national and international award-winning dance makers, specifically for the Eastside.

Drawn from diverse backgrounds and possessing strong individual voices, each CHOP SHOP company or artist is united through the contemporary language of dance and its power to stir the senses through the visceral moving image. CHOP SHOP 2016 features performances by: Spectrum Dance Theater (Seattle), Michele Miller/Catapult Dance (Seattle), Kyra Jean Green (Montreal), Coleman Pester // TECTONIC MARROW SOCIETY (Seattle), Lauren Edson/LED (Boise), Anna Conner +CO (Seattle), SubRosa Dance Collective (Portland, Ore.), Elizabeth Houlton and Dancers (Seattle), The Stone Dance Collective (Eastside) and Alexander Pham (Dallas).

Tickets will be available soon at Tickets for adults are $28 and student/senior tickets are $23. Discounted tickets are available for groups of 10 or more. The Theatre at Meydenbauer is located at 11100 NE 6th St., Bellevue, WA 98004. For more information visit A promo reel featuring 2015 performing artists is available at

2016 Performing Artists

Spectrum Dance Theater (Seattle) was founded in 1982 to bring dance of the highest merit to a diverse audience composed of people from different social, cultural, ethnic and economic backgrounds. Spectrum Dance Theater’s principal objective is to make the art form of dance accessible through contemporary dance performances and high-quality training in a variety of dance styles.

Donald Byrd, a TONY nominated (The Color Purple) and Bessie Award winning (The Minstrel Show) choreographer is the artistic Director of Spectrum Dance Theater in Seattle (since 2002). Formerly he was Artistic Director of Donald Byrd/The Group, a critically acclaimed contemporary dance company, founded in Los Angeles and later based in New York, that toured extensively, both nationally and internationally. He is credited with over 100 dance works for his own groups and for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, and Philadelphia Dance Company (Philadanco), among others; and for classical companies, including Pacific Northwest Ballet, The Joffrey Ballet, and Dance Theater of Harlem; and has worked with The New York Shakespeare Festival/Public Theater, La Jolla Playhouse, the Intiman Theater, Center Stage (Baltimore), San Francisco Opera, Seattle Opera, and New York City Opera. He counts amongst his collaborators Peter Sellars, Anna Deavere Smith, and the late Max Roach.

His awards, prizes, and fellowships include a Masters of Choreography Award (Kennedy Center), Fellow of The American Academy in Jerusalem, James Baldwin Fellow of United States Artists, Fellow at the Institute on the Arts and Civic Dialogue, and the Mayor’s Arts Award (sustained contribution to the City of Seattle); grants from many national foundations for his projects (Rockefeller Foundation, MetLife Foundation, New England Foundation, Map Fund, Altria, Jerome Foundation, and The National Endowment for the Arts.

Byrd served as a Seattle Arts Commissioner, sat on the boards of Dance/USA and Dance Theater Workshop, and has been a panelist for the NEA, The Princess Grace Awards, and a Cultural Envoy for The U.S. Department of State. He currently serves on the TONY nominating committee.

Spectrum Dance Theater presents an excerpt from their upcoming show RAMBUNCTIOUS 2.0: A Festival of Music and Dance.

Michele Miller/Catapult Dance (Seattle) is known for the use of a hybrid of movement forms including modern dance, contact improvisation, martial arts and physical theater. The company utilizes physical experimentation and practiced methods of falling, flying and inversions to create a sensual, kinetic, emotional landscape. The eight dancers of Catapult Dance push the physical boundaries of movement and technique through an intense rehearsal process that builds the trust and technical skill necessary to execute the physical material with effortless mastery.

Michele Miller moved to Seattle in 1992 to work with the Pat Graney Company. In 1995 she was hired by Cornish College of the Arts, where she is now a Professor, and in 1996 she opened Velocity Dance Center with KT Niehoff. Miller currently owns and operates SHIFT Movement and Healing Arts, LLC with her wife Heather Coyle, teaching private Pilates sessions and martial arts. In Seattle, her choreography has been produced by On the Boards’ Northwest New Works, 12 Minutes Max, Strictly Seattle, the BOOST Dance Festival, Evoke Productions’ Full Tilt, SIDF and several self-produced concerts. As an independent artist, Miller is a former member of LeGendre Performance Group and the Pat Graney Company, and was a founding member of d9 Dance Collective. She trains in several styles of martial arts including Chen Tai Chi, Koo's Tai Chi, Wudang Tai Chi and Northern Shaolin Kung Fu.

Catapult Dance presents Miller’s What We Have, a powerful testament to the tenacity of family. Inspired by the struggles of living in a split family and observing the dynamic shifts in relationships as the family moves from two to three to two again, the piece is an emotional examination of the power of intimacy, solitude, exclusion and the resilience of human nature. Kaitlin McCarthy of SeattleDances described the work as “…a trio of counterbalance, spirals, and collision, all performed with an effortless soaring quality.”

Coleman Pester // TECTONIC MARROW SOCIETY (Seattle) is a collaborative company that creates multi-media art with the focal point of contemporary dance. Founded by Coleman Pester in 2012, the inaugural work was Home, a solo dance installation that premiered in Melbourne, Australia. The structure of TMS is fluid with each project, but has consisted of dancers, filmmakers, choreographers, an architect/set designer, a lighting designer and musicians/composers.

Coleman Pester has built a diverse palette of work over the past five years of traveling and education. During this time he founded TECTONIC MARROW SOCIETY and has premiered dance works in Seattle, Australia, Israel, New York and the San Francisco Bay Area. His interest in using architectural structures in making dance emerged while acting as the assistant to renowned Choreographer Anouk van Dijk, Artistic Director of Chunky Move in Australia in 2012. He earned his BFA from the LINES Ballet/Dominican University program in the San Francisco Bay Area.

TECTONIC MARROW SOCIETY offers Pester’s The Architecture of Being, a work dealing with relationships and featuring a cast of 17 performers. The work contemplates how a human relates to a city, a mass of people, to architecture, to space, to emotions, and to self, serving as a reflection on the idea of being while evoking a dynamic flow of emotional states from the dancers. After an accumulation of harsh images, what is found beneath it all is a striking moment of forgiveness. The work is set to an original sound composition by local composer Bret Gardín.

Kyra Jean Green (Montreal, QC) was born in France, raised in West Palm Beach, Fla., and obtained her BFA in dance from The Juilliard School. She has set choreography on Hubbard Street II, where she was the winner of the choreographic competition in 2007, Eisenhower Dance Ensemble, Bosma Dance, Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts, Cadence Progressive Contemporary Ballet and Companhia Rudá, and was commissioned by the Kennedy Center to present an evening of her choreography. She has also presented work performed at F.A.T. (Fashion Art Toronto), Guelph Contemporary Dance Festival, Dance Conference USA and Fall Movement at The Center of Performance Research. Green was recently in Brazil working as artist and assistant director for Companhia Rudá. She currently resides in Montreal and is working with Les 7 Doigts de la Main on the show Triptyque.

Kyra Jean Green presents her dark and dreamy work Eytan. Based on a character named Eytan, the work focuses on his search for all the people that he was once surrounded by. He does not know where they went, if they died, if they were real. What Eytan does not know is that he only exists in the dreams of others.

Lauren Edson/LED (Boise) promises an original experience where sound, image and movement collide, with a focus on artistic leadership, visceral connections and evocative expression. LED is directed by husband and wife duo, Lauren Edson and Andrew Stensaas.

Lauren Edson, originally from Boise, Idaho, received her training at North Carolina School of the Arts and The Juilliard School. Her past professional experiences include: Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and Trey McIntyre Project. Her choreography has appeared at Jacob's Pillow Inside/Out Series, The McCallum Theatre, The Kennedy Center, Ailey Citigroup Theatre, On the Boards and Conduit, to name a few. She is honored to have received several choreographic awards, fellowships and commissions from companies throughout the nation. Edson founded LED with her husband in January 2015 and is honored to create work with the one she loves. They have a one-year-old boy who takes them on a wild romp every day.

LED presents excerpts from Edson’s Barbarian Princess, a work inspired by the life and art of Zelda Fitzgerald. Alice Kaderlan, writing in The Seattle Times, called the work "a dazzling display of pyrotechnics and a work that skillfully blends riveting movement, intense emotionality, beautiful projections and a sophisticated score by Andrew Stensaas.”

Anna Conner/Anna Conner +CO (Seattle) works with improvisation, collaboration, research, discussion and reflection. Conner, named a featured artist to watch in 2014 by Berlin’s Kaltblut magazine, is a dancer/choreographer based in Seattle, WA since 2006. Her work has been commissioned and presented by On the Boards, Velocity Dance Center, Conduit, CHOP SHOP: Bodies of Work, Pacific Dance Makers and Movement Research at Judson Church, among others. Conner has received residencies from pOnderosa (Germany) and Velocity Dance Center (Seattle), and is a recipient of a 2013 SmART Ventures Grant from the Seattle Office of Arts and Culture, a 2013 & 2015 Art Projects 4Culture grant, a 2015 City Artist Projects Grant and a 2015 Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant. Conner is also a managing partner of Open Flight Studio in Seattle.

Anna Conner +CO offers festival-goers a dark, quirky and playful duet, newly imagined for CHOP SHOP audiences.

The Stone Dance Collective (Eastside) is directed by Eva Stone and originated in London, England in 1993, before becoming a permanent part of the Seattle/Eastside dance community in 1995. Stone’s approach to choreography evolved from learning the art form in reverse (choreography before technique) and is unique with its intent based in humor and authentic human connection and emotion. Her work has been presented at On the Boards, Men in Dance, the ArtsEdge Festival, Bumbershoot and the Seattle International Dance Festival, where she has also served as a guest curator. Stone’s work has been commissioned throughout the Northwest by companies such as Spectrum Dance Theater, Seattle Dance Project and Bellingham Repertory Dance, and has been seen as far afield as Europe and Russia. As a commissioned choreographer for Regional Dance America/Pacific she has made works for South Bay Ballet in Los Angeles, Mid-Columbia Ballet, and Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre. In late spring 2016, her work will be performed by the Professional Division students at Pacific Northwest Ballet School’s year-end performance.

The Stone Dance Collective will premiere a new work by Stone, in collaboration with the company dancers, that explores the slowly vanishing art of the handwritten letter.

Elizabeth Houlton and Dancers (Seattle) is a collaborative troupe exploring the subtleties of emotional subtexts in rich, new vocabularies rooted in ballet techniques. With pointed feet, gestural arms and a constantly shifting focus, the dancers reveal more about their curiosities than the storyline. Time is suspended through this kind of exploration, inviting the audience into a world not separate from their own, but distant like a memory or fleeting thought. Elizabeth Houlton and Dancers is exploring the fine line between theatricality meticulously calculated and authentic interactions/reactions.

Elizabeth Houlton is a Minneapolis, Minn. native currently residing in Seattle. Her formal training was received from Minnesota Dance Theatre School, with summers spent at Miami City Ballet, Alonzo King's Lines Ballet, BodyTraffic and the Limon Workshop West. Houlton recently graduated from California Institute of the Arts with a BFA in Dance Performance and Choreography and a minor in Math and Sciences. While at CalArts, she had the opportunity to present her work at Redcat in Los Angeles, choreographing for Next Dance Company alongside Sidra Bell. Houlton transplanted her choreographic voice to Minneapolis as well, with the re-imagining of her work Close Quarters in a Large World for Minnesota Dance Theatre.

Elizabeth Houlton and Dancers present Houlton’s Close Quarters in a Large World. Taken from a still image of runway models dressed in variations of gold plated silhouettes, this work is rooted in the beauty industry's categorization of what a woman’s physique "should" be. The depth and intelligence of woman, however, is never revealed at first glance.

Alexander Pham (Dallas), originally from Minneapolis, Minn., received his BFA in dance from the University of Minnesota. He currently dances for Dark Circles Contemporary Dance based in Dallas, under the artistic direction of Joshua L. Peugh. In addition to having danced professionally for Anna Conner +CO (Seattle), zoe | juniper (Seattle) and Contempo Physical Dance (Minneapolis), Pham has performed works by artists such as Bill T. Jones, Martha Graham, Larry Keigwin, Stephen Petronio and Donald Byrd, with highlights of performing at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. and in Montréal as an alumni of Springboard Danse Montréal. As a choreographer, Pham’s movement is rooted in contemporary vocabulary and dedicated to innovation and investigation.

The intimate text solo Re: Repetition is a response to Phil Kaye’s spoken-word poem “Repetition,” which touches on ideas of self-doubt and the honest difficulties that come with having a stutter. The images created and qualities of the movement parallel that of the text delivered by the spoken-word artist, sharing several instances of vulnerability, frustration and a continual sense of effort and work. Wendy Perron, former Editor-in-Chief of Dance Magazine, described Re: Repetition as containing “extraordinary moves, exquisite movement – so much resilience and control. Heartbreaking yet really exciting to see...every piece of this piece was essential.”

SubRosa Dance Collective (Portland, Ore.) strives to work with artists of all mediums and media, showcasing how a “village” of artists can do so much more together, in tandem, in communication and in support of and with each other. The bounty of possibilities and the plush room for innovation in art is what brings beauty and poignancy into our communities, and thus, is SubRosa Dance Collective’s inspiration.

Carlyn Hudson began her earliest dance training in her home state of New York. After receiving a BFA in dance from SUNY Purchase College, she danced with Connecticut Ballet, before switching coasts and becoming a resident of Portland, Ore. Once in Portland Hudson took the stage with Polaris Dance Theater, before becoming Co-Founder of SubRosa Dance Collective, an all-female company that has been self-producing, choreographing and dancing their shows since 2011.

SubRosa Dance Collective offers CHOP SHOP audiences an excerpt from Hudson’s Foibles. In fencing, a foible is described as the weakest part of the blade, the part most susceptible to breakage. In humans, a foible is your weakness, your nervous tick, your bad habit, your shortcoming; the part of yourself that you wish you could change, but cannot. Taking its structural, staging and technical roots from classical ballet, the work serves as a topical look at a group of five people who blunder through life, imperfect, but generally happy and functional. They help and hinder each other, they seem silly, they bicker and they encourage each other.

About CHOP SHOP: Bodies of Work

CHOP SHOP: Bodies of Work launched in 2008, founded on a mission to bring quality contemporary dance to Seattle-area residents. Through the support and presentation of local, national, and international artists, CHOP SHOP: Bodies of Work promotes the accessibility of contemporary dance for both new and experienced audiences. Since its inception, CHOP SHOP has presented 46 dance companies, shown 83 dance works, supported over 243 artists, and given festival scholarships to numerous young dancers. Artists featured in past editions of CHOP SHOP: Bodies of Work include Spectrum Dance Theatre (Seattle), Joshua Beamish (Vancouver, British Columbia), Adam Barruch Dance (New York City), Gerard Regot (Portland, Ore./Spain), Gabrielle Revlock (Philadelphia/New York City), Whim W’Him (Seattle), Donald Sales (Vancouver, British Columbia), Mark Haim (Seattle) and Alex Ketley/The Foundry (San Francisco). For more information, please visit:

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