newMoves Symposium Panelists
Kyle Abraham/Abraham.In.Motion — Kyle Abraham, professional dancer and choreographer, began his training at the Civic Light Opera Academy and the Creative and Performing Arts High School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He continued his dance studies in New York, receiving a BFA from SUNY Purchase and an MFA from NYU Tisch School of the Arts. Over the past few years, Abraham has received tremendous accolades and awards for his dancing and choreography including Dance Magazine’s coveted 25 to Watch in 2009, a Jerome Foundation Travel and Study Grant 2008, Pennsylvania Council for the Arts Fellowship in 2002. This year, Abraham was heralded by OUT Magazine as one of the “best and brightest creative talent to emerge in New York City in the age of Obama.” His choreography has been presented throughout the United States and abroad, most recently at Dance Theater Workshop, Bates Dance Festival, Jacobs Pillow, The Okinawa Prefectural Museum & Art Museum located in Okinawa Japan, Springboard Danse Montreal, Fall for Dance Festival at New York’s City Center, Harlem Stage/Aaron Davis Hall in Harlem, New York and the Internationales Solo-Tanz-Theater Festival in Stuttgart, Germany.
As a performer, Abraham has worked with several acclaimed modern dance companies including David Dorfman Dance, Dance Conduction Continuum, Nathan Trice/Rituals, Mimi Garrard Dance Theater, Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Dance Alloy, The Kevin Wynn Collection, and Attack Theatre. In addition to performing and developing new works for his company, abraham.in.motion, Abraham also teaches his unique approach to post-modern dance in various schools and studios throughout the United States.
BLOOM! Dance Collective — Being a truly international collective, BLOOM!’s works are rooted in various cultural backgrounds and disciplines. BLOOM! embraces collaboration as the foundation of its creative process opening up the artistic direction to the whole team. The creative team of each production comprises different members and also guest artists working in the fields of dance, set & costume design, lighting design and film.
Since its foundation in November 2009 BLOOM! has created two pieces, namely CITY and TAME GAME. Most recently BLOOM! has been awarded the Rudolf Laban Award 2010 (Budapest) for best Hungarian dance production(CITY) and it was awarded an artistic residency at the Prix Jardin D’Europe 2010 (iDans04-Istanbul). The collective was also selected for the international touring network Aerowaves in 2010-2011.
BLOOM! is currently working on SuperHeroes (working title), the collective’s third production to be premiered in Spring 2012. Members include: Viktória Dányi(HU), Csaba Molnár (SK), Moreno Solinas (IT), Igor Urzelai (ES), Alberto Ruiz Soler (ES); and manager Anikó Rácz (HU)
Sidra Bell — Sidra Bell (Artistic Director) holds a BA in History from Yale University and an MFA in Choreography from Purchase College Conservatory of Dance. She is currently a Master Lecturer at University of the Arts in Philadelphia. Bell has been the recipient of several prestigious awards including a performance prize for her solo work Conductivity in 2009 at the Internationales Solo-Tanz-Theatre Festival in Stuttgart, Germany. At the same festival in 2011, she received First Prize for Choreography for her solo work Grief Point. In 2010, The Pittsburgh Post Gazette said of Bell, “she had her finger on the future of dance where ballet and hip-hop coexist on the same plane.” As a sought after master teacher, Bell has taught her unique and comprehensive approach to creative process, improvisation, and technique at many prestigious institutions for dance and theater.
Jaamil Olawale Kosoko — Philly-based choreographer and dance impresario Jaamil Olawale Kosoko is a busy man these days—creatively, curatorially, and administratively. He recently changed the name of his company from Kosoko Performance Group to The Philadiction Movement to herald in a new era for the company. Kosoko has been performing and touring with his company and with Headlong Dance Theater, and he has just published a book of his poems titled Notes on an Urban Kill-Floor. The recently formed company, The Philadiction Movement, is a Philadelphia-based interdisciplinary ensemble of musicians, dancers, writers, actors, and visual artists. Its artistic mission is to push performance further via the expansion of cultural awareness, the production of live performance, literary publication, youth and community outreach, and teaching.
Sara Crawford Nash — Sara Crawford Nash is the Program Manager of the National Dance Project at the New England Foundation for the Arts. Prior to joining NEFA, Nash managed the USArtists International grant program at the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation. She worked as senior producer in programming at Dance Theater Workshop in New York City, at Tanec Praha, an international contemporary dance festival in Prague, and at the British Council in London. She has served as a panelist for a variety of programs and organizations, including the New England Foundation for the Arts, the Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography, Performance Space 122’s Avante-Garde-Arama series, the IN FLUX performance series in Philadelphia, Solar One Green Energy Arts Festival, and the Sazka Award for Choreography. She served as the Northeastern Regional Desk for the National Performance Network in New Orleans in 2009. Nash holds a degree in Theater and Dance from Mary Washington College.
Staycee R. Pearl — Staycee R. Pearl began her dance training at the University of the Arts, and Alvin Ailey American Dance Center. After ten years of working as a dancer/choreographer based in NYC and Atlanta GA, she relocated to Pittsburgh and immediately began her six-year tenure as Artistic Director of Xpressions Contemporary Dance Company. She premiered numerous original works and experienced working with celebrated national choreographers such as, Rennie Harris and Robert Battle, Kyle Abraham, and Darrell G. Moultrie. Pearl is responsible for the choreography in Nathan Davis’ jazz-opera, Just Above My Head, Carmen Jones, and Lost in the Stars, produced by the Opera Theater of Pittsburgh. Over the past five years, her continued educational experiences include a Choreographic Fellowship at Summer Stages Dance in Concord MA, a scholarship to Urban Bush Women’s Summer Institute/Place Matters, and a performance workshop with Art-UP and La Pocha Nostra. Pearl recently graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with department honors in Studio Arts and a minor in Africana Studies. She continues to produce multi media works with PearlArts: movement and sound, co founded with Herman Pearl, and has served as curatorial advisor for NewMoves Contemporary Dance Festival. Ms Pearl debuted STAYCEE PEARL dance project at Kelly Strayhorn Theater in 2010.
Craig T. Peterson — Craig T. Peterson, Director of the Philly Fringe Festival and Live Arts Brewery (LAB) program, joined the staff of the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival in 2010. Initiated in 2009, the LAB program seeks to support artists in the creative process through integrated, long-term residencies, elective programming, and the facilitation of collaborative artistic exchange between audiences and artists of all disciplines. He is also Director of the annual Philly Fringe Festival, a three week city-wide festival featuring the work of more than 200 performing artists and companies.
For ten years he served in numerous positions at Dance Theater Workshop (now New York Live Arts), one of America’s preeminent performing arts institutions based in NYC including that of Artistic Director and Producer for four years. In 2004, Peterson co-founded U-Phonic Records, an independent record label based in New York City. He has served on numerous panels for inter/national arts funding institutions, consulted with various arts and social service organizations as a program sight assessor and lecturer, and has traveled extensively nationally and internationally to identify emerging talent and connect with artists and arts organizations worldwide.
Thomas Benjamin Pryor — Thomas Benjamin Snapp Pryor is an independent arts manager, producer, and curator operating under the moniker tbspMGMT. His current projects include producing and touring the performance works of Miguel Gutierrez and the Powerful People, Trajal Harrell, Ishmael Houston-Jones, Yvonne Meier, Wally Cardona, and Deborah Hay. Pryor is also the Curator and Producer for American Realness, an annual festival of contemporary performance at Abrons Arts Center in New York, NY (Best of Dance 2010, ArtForum). Previously Ben worked as Director of Operations for Center for Performance Research, an Artist Representative at Pentacle, a project manager for Chez Bushwick, and in the Planning and Development department at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Ben served as chair of the Agents Council and Trustee for Dance USA from 2008-2010. He was the recipient of the 2010 Gabriela Tudor Fellowship in Cultural Management. He has served as a panelist/reader for CEC ArtsLink, the Jerome Foundation, Creative Capital, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Kate Watson-Wallace — Kate Watson-Wallace is a choreographer, director, and professional development facilitator who creates site-based performances that re-imagine our everyday spaces. She co-directs anonymous bodies, an art collective based in Philadelphia, with Jaamil Kosoko. Her work includes HOUSE, a performance for 15 audience members inside an abandoned row home; CAR, where four audience members sit inside a moving vehicle; STORE, a performance installation about American greed; and Everywhere, a participatory on-line dance experience and contest. Watson-Wallace is a 2007 Pew Fellow in the Arts in Choreography. She has received two Map Fund Grants, a Doris Duke Exploration Grant through Creative Capital, and four grants from the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage’s Dance Advance program, as well as funding from The Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, The Independence Foundation, and PennPAT.
From 1998-2002, Watson-Wallace toured internationally with Group Motion Company, and has toured and performed with Headlong Dance Theater since 2004. She is currently working on Mash Up Body, a performance installation created in collaboration with video artist Ricardo Rivera (klip collective) and musician Chris Powell (ManMan). Mash Up Body explores the idea of a multi-tasking body with an interactive video and sound installation. Mash Up Body was started in a developmental residency at the Yard. The work will continue to be developed through a yearlong residency (supported by the Investing in Professional Artists Grant Program of the Pittsburgh Foundation) at the Kelly Strayhorn premiering in Spring 2013.
Marya Wethers — Marya Wethers has been dancing and working in arts administration in NYC since 1997. As a performer, she has enjoyed working with Yanira Castro + Company, CompanyAmyCox, Palissimo, Faye Driscoll, and Joyce S. Lim. Marya has also performed in independent films and television, including a featured role in the dance film Lez Side Story and hosting Move the Frame on public access television. As an administrator, she has worked at Danspace Project, BRICstudio, Pentacle, and currently New York Live Arts. She curated the Out of Space @ BRICstudio series for Danspace Project from 2003-2007 as well as two evening of Food For Thought programs. Her writing UnCHARTed Legacies: women of color in post-modern dance was published in the 25th Anniversary Movement Research Performance Journal #27/28. She graduated from Mount Holyoke College cum laude with a BA in Dance with High Honors and a minor in African-American Studies.
Reggie Wilson — Reggie Wilson (Artistic Director, choreographer and performer) founded his company, Reggie Wilson/Fist & Heel Performance Group, in 1989. The Brooklyn-based dance company that investigates the intersections of cultural anthropology and movement practices by blending contemporary dance with African traditions. Wilson draws from the movement languages of the blues, slave and spiritual cultures of Africans in the Americas and combines them with post-modern elements and his own personal movement style to create what he calls “post-African/Neo-HooDoo Modern dances.” His latest evening-length work, The Good Dance – dakar/brooklyn had its World premiere at the Walker Art Center in November 2009 and NY premiere at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in December 2009 followed by a ten city US tour.