I am very honored to be recognized along with so many of the shows and casts I worked with this year.
Base Occasional No. 3, co-presented with On the Boards:
Base and On the Boards co-present Minneapolis-based choreographer Morgan Thorson in her acclaimed ensemble dance installation, Still Life, Aug. 1 - 4, 2019 at Base. Featuring a cast of dancers from both Seattle and Minneapolis, Still Life is structured as a dance/time cycle, exploring what it means to “kill” choreography by erasing material with each repetition. With the dance staged in close proximity to the viewer, Thorson creates a space for contemplation, processes the violence of the present moment, and creates a long-form choreography that investigates dance as a living and dying thing.
The work will run in five-hour durational segments for four days at Base, and features a cast of dancers from Portland, Minneapolis and Seattle, including Alyza DelPan-Monley, Fox Whitney, Jordan MacIntosh-Hougham and Meredith Pellon (understudy).
By Leanna Keith
NW New Works 2019
On the Boards
Alongside mixed-race movement artists from the Seattle area, composer Leanna Keith presents Finding The InBetween, an explo-ration of the mixed-race experi-ence in America.
This is one of my first times explicitly performing my multi-racial identity. I normally live in the two worlds of performing my POC identity, or performing as a white-passing person. There is a specific part of my identity that this show allowed me to grapple with. The part that doesn’t fit in to any of the categories. The part of me that is itself a multiplicity, neither this nor that, but something in between.
DITCH shines a light on Cherdonna’s varied expressions of femininity and complex personality, contrasting her charisma and constant need to please with the total fear and existential dread that ceaselessly plagues her. What happens when she can’t make everyone happy in the face of an oppressive existence? Is it better to stick it out or end it all? What about when she lets herself cross over into a state of abandon and resignation?
We performed this show 80 times, once a day from Jan 28-April 28 at the Frye Museum. It was exciting to be a part of something so eccentric and wacky, but also something that put a lot of consistency and regularity in my life for those three months. We got into a super tight routine where running the piece became second nature.
Wonder and Resilience: Honoring hidden memories in the land, reintegrating what we ostracize
Wonder and Resilience: There is no one who is outside the human community
'A Great Unbridgeable Distance' will be a series of nightly durational-performance meditations in garden spaces in Downtown Park, guided by a trans-disciplinary cohort of guides brought together and costumed by artist Mandy Greer and Fallow Collective.
Bring a blanket, bring a picnic, rest, move, come and go as you please, participate or just watch.
Anyone is invited to assemble around the rough hewn elm tables, and rest on the communally hand-woven indigo rugs, in this space held for contemplation and learning through hand-work. Together we’ll seek for a sense of place and history in our internal and external landscapes, making peace with our darkness both personally and societally, and pay homage to remembrances of the sweetness of life and the hard work of turning to the light.
Over the course of 10 evenings, a non-linear narrative of loss, regret, shame and also of resiliency, wonder and resistance will be woven together for those who come to participate in any way they desire. Through simple but poetic shared meaningful experiences, all who gather will be guided towards bridging the distances between ourselves and our other companions on this earth.
We spent June 2018 in Terni, Italy, working to remount Alice Gosti’s How to Become a Partisan.
I curated and emceed this fantastic evening of performances for SEAF’s live stage.
May 18-19, 10 p.m. 2017
Curated by Mark Haim, Babette Pendleton, Ali Mohamed el-Gasseir, and Alice Gosti, reSET is a sort of arts-share dance series put on by the Washington Ensemble Theatre. Choreographers perform new pieces using the set for whatever play the company happens to be producing at that time. They will reimagine the stage for Cherdonna's Doll's House to suit their artistic needs.
The next months are jammed full of events and performances of new and exciting work! To start off, I will be performing in Ashleigh Claire Miller's "Third Incarnation" with a wonderful group of dancers. This work was created for Velocity Dance Center's Bridge Project in an intensive month-long process.
For tickets and information about the Bridge Project, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/850239061740450/
For more on Ashleigh's company Faunix, visit www.faunix.com
We're doing a special surprise (is it a surprise if I tell you) performance at Thunderpussy's concert! Welcome them back from their tour and feast on some rock and roll, sweat, and pussy!
Over the summer, I got to be a part of Amy Johnson's newest dance films! I'm a huge fan of her work, which is technical yet full of cartoony theatrical moments. Because convention is silly and things do not always live in chronological order, she has just released "Voyager, part 2"! How ORANGE are our shorts?!?!?!? Filmed in the beautiful Century Ballroom by the beautiful Jazzy Photo! Enjoy!
Velocity's annual fundraiser is just around the corner! This year they are celebrating with a Michael Jackson Dance Off!
I will be choreographing the group routine for our fabulous danceOFF competitors. Don't worry... the dance will be as easy as A B C. *wink*wink*
In the danceOFF to end all danceOFFs, five of Velocity's most talented dance artists team up with local celebrities to perform two-minute Michael Jackson-inspired duets + YOU can vote with your dollars.
OUR 2015 danceBASH COUPLES ARE:
1 - Dani Tirrel + Stefanie Karlin
2 - Amy Johnson + Robert Stumberger
3 - Eric Fredericksen + Michael Seiwerath with Juliet Waller-Pruzan
4 - Melissa Feldman + Eric Pitsenbarger with Wade Madsen
5 - Cherdonna Shinatra + David Schmader
Find out more on the event page
Check out Lorraine and me dancing in the Oh! Pears' music video "It's Real." It was fascinating to learn about the lyrics and to conceptualize how to put those lyrics into movement. I created a duet exploring the comfort of being held, the sturdy yet dependent ways of reliance, and the internal struggles of our different facets of self. Thanks to Bradley Oliver Wilkinson for directing and Darm Darm Productions.
Seattle Times published a fantastic review of Mad Scientist Cabaret!
Dusty Somers gave insight into the show and helped put to words what the show is about in ways that I couldn't previously describe.
"Demonstrating a sometimes impressively misguided sense of showmanship, the seven freakish creatures sing, dance and perform little sketches...their efforts sometimes resemble an alien's attempts to replicate human behavior"
"In seeking to understand what they are and how they fit into their universe, each one discovers both the beauty and ugliness inside themselves."
Read the full article here
We have one last performance this Friday the 13th! Buy your ticket here
Zane and I just finished making our mix for our 60 Second long piece for Spin the Bottle! May the song give you some clues as to what we will be performing!!! :p
Sixty Seconds Max, like any other holiday, only happens once a year. But unlike any other holiday, it's not actually a holiday, but a wild mashup of breakneck speed, fast-paced theatre. It's not just SPIN THE BOTTLE--where you never know what to expect from the performers as they bring you a taste of burlesque or spoken word or music--it's a version of SPIN THE BOTTLE where every performer only has sixty seconds to perform.
That's right, each act is one. minute. short.
As ever, this beloved holiday-not-holiday is hosted by BRUCE HALL.
Don't miss it!
This fall, I have been working on a show with an ensemble of actors, clowns and puppeteers. We bring you: MAD SCIENTIST CABARET!
Seven nightmarish creatures escape from a laboratory and embark on a madcap adventure into the weird and wonderful world of Mad Science! Bound by their own bizarreness, they toil through titillating torments, physical feats, and extended experiments on each other as they seek to discover the truth to their own monstrosity... and humanity.
Through a special blend of comic mayhem and visual spectacle they take the audience on a jam-packed journey into insanity that walks the line of horror and humor. Clowning, dance, puppetry, and more come together in this playfully audacious piece.
Class Exchange, run by Kim Holloway, Corina Dalzell and Hayley Shannon, offers specialized dance classes taught by local dancers. $3-5 donations bring you wonderful technique, improv, and stylized classes.
I am teaching this Monday, October 5 from 10-11:30am at Spectrum Dance Theater.
My class will focus on musicality and dancing with music as your partner.
One of the things I most love about dancing is the embodiment of sound. I love playing with a song as a dance partner. Whether you're going out to a dance party, humming a song while you run errands, or performing onstage with music - dance and music are incredibly intertwined. In this class, we will find pleasures in exploring music and letting our movement live in different soundscapes.