Manicula3 SJ

recent news and upcoming engagements

San José, Costa Rica

ChavasseDance&Performance traveled to San José, Costa Rica for a rehearsal and performance residency, June 4-12. Performances were at the Teatro Eugene O’Neill  in the Centro Cultural Costarricense Norteamericano. The collaborating artists were Luciana Acuña, Amy Chavasse, Beth Graczyk, Sarah Konner, Austin Selden and Paty Lorena Solórzano. ChavasseDance shared the evening with the Compañía Nacional de Danza de Costa Rica, Danza U Compañía de Cámara and DanzaUNA.

We performed two works, How to stay in a dream and Manicula is a Revolver.

This residency represented the first gathering of the ChavasseDance collective artists since the pandemic shut down in 2020.

How to stay in a dream sources intimate vignettes, imagined resurrections, fabricated folk tales, and dreams that allow unheard and unseen parts of ourselves to be heard and seen. These vignettes were digitally stitched together in a year long pandemic dreamstate by artists working in Brooklyn, Buenos Aires, Michigan, Puebla, Mexico, and Houston. Our practice involved moving into real time encounters, bearing an unfathomable loss with us. Specifically, the passing of one of the original participants in this project, Luis Biasotto, from COVID. Luis last appears in footage shot in early April. Only a few weeks later, he had died.

Plunder Thunder performances at The New International Dance Festival in Daejon, and The Goyang International Dance Festival in Goyang, South Korea

From September 19 to 29, 2022, I traveled to Seoul,  Daejeon, and Goyang South Korea with BFA Dance alums, Stephanie Gennusa and Rowan Janusiak. The duet, “Plunder Thunder” was invited to participate in the New International Dance Festival, hosted by the 21st Century Modern Dance Research Circle, and the Goyang International Dance Festival. At both festivals, they joined an auspicious group of contemporary dance artists from across South Korea for two mulit-week, presentations of contemporary dance and performance. In addition to their performances, they were able to attend many of the performances and meet many important artists defining the dance scene in South Korea today. I taught improvisation and technique workshops at Gangnam University in Daejeon, and in the Department of Dance at Kyung Hee University in Goyang. The creativity and talent of the students was incredible, adding to the success of the performance residencies. We established many important connections with the students and faculty at both universities, and with dance professionals in South Korea.

Performers: Stephanie Gennusa and Rowan Janusiak

Seville, Spain

Amy Chavasse traveled with nine BFA Dance, and Dance Minor students to participate in the first U-M Department of Dance Study Abroad program in Seville, Spain, led by Catherine Coury (BFA 2010) and Mario Bermudez Gil (Marcat Dance Company), teaching Gaga and Marcat technique. Chavasse contributed classes in Improvisation. She then joined Dance MFA students for a week of classes, exchange and performances in San José, Costa Rica, teaching at the Universidad Nacional de Costa Rica, and performed at The Costa Rican North American Cultural Center. She attended a mid-summer performance residency at The Croft, on Lake Charlevoix, MI, where she worked as collaborator and director for a new project with Sarah Konner, (BFA 2010), Austin Selden (BFA 2010) and NYC based artist, Beth Graczyk. In August, she worked with Nicole Reehorst (MFA 2019), and Emily Soong (BFA 2019) to create a new duet “Plunder Thunder” that premiered at the Detroit Dance City Festival and was selected from The Choreographer’s Showcase, to participate in the 2020 International New Dance Festival in South Korea.

New York based artists, Beth Graczyk and John Gutierrez, will join Chavasse, Reehorst and Soong in Shanghai to premiere their new work, “King Lear in the Forest”. The Shanghai residency will include classes, workshops and performances.

Informal showing of the new trio, at The Lavendar Barn in Horton Bay, MI

How to Stay in a Dream (or) Ratas de dos Patas

This online creative collaboration was completed in December, 2021. What began as a planned in person collaboration with Luciana Acuña, Luis Biasotto (co-founders of Buenos Aires based Grupo Krapp), Amy Chavasse, Austin Selden, Patricia Lorena Solorzano and Nola Sporn Smith, shifted to an online collaboration with the onset of the pandemic. Meeting twice weekly via Zoom, the artists built a massive archive of footage, responding to various prompts, writing and examining ideas around what constitutes a folk dance, sharing videos and links to art and literature, improvising in our various locales culminating in a raucous, out of tune, sing along to the iconic Mexican folk song– Ratas de dos Patas.

With the passing of Luis Biasotto in May, 2021, due to complications from COVID-19, the collaboration was paused for several months. This loss tore through our hearts and of the hearts of so many…we continue to mourn his passing, while honoring his artistry and vision.

Thunder Plunder, 2019

Thunder Plunder performance at The Shanghai Tower, October 2019

Performers—Nicole Reehorst & Emily Soong

Improvisation class at The Beijing Dance Festival, 2012

The Hunger for the Longing

“Dance: The Perfect Instrument for Expressing Protest”

Urban City Festival

Plunder Thunder

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