Friday – February 15th, 2019
7:30 pm @ Wise Theatre

Mayamedo (Bharathanatyam)

Choreographers: VP and Shanta Dhananjayan
Performer: Dr. Anuradha Murali

Mayamedo: an excerpt from a longer piece that includes nritta (graceful, rhythmic movement of the body) and abhinaya (facial expressions to describe a story). This piece is choreographed in the Indian classical style of dance known as Bharathanatyam, where the heroine says, “show some compassion towards me, why do you use deception and pretense to entice me (as you ride on your beautiful peacock) and then disappear?”.

Dr. Anuradha Murali, Artistic Director of Mrudani School of Performing Arts, had formal training in Bharathanatyam from Radha Srinivassan and Shanta and VP Dhananjayan (India) and Adyar K. Lakshman (India). She has also received formal training in Kuchipudi by P. Rajeshwari and Guru Vempati Chinna Satyam, Kuchipudi Art Academy, (India). As an Adjunct Professor of Dance, Anuradha has taught Bharathanatyam and Kuchipudi at Columbia College, Columbia, SC. As an Instructor of Dance, she has taught Bharathanatyam at the University of South Carolina, Dance Department. She has written several scholarly articles in teaching Bharathanatyam and Kuchipudi at community colleges and universities for dance majors. Anuradha, a recipient of numerous grants/awards for dance choreography and dance performance, has performed at prestigious national and international festivals including India, Japan, France, South Korea, Greece, Italy and Brazil.

She was a big success

Choreographer: Fabiola Guillén
Performers: Cecilia Durán
Rehearsal Director: José Ángel Cuevas
Music: Excerpt from “The Model” by Kraftwerk

Artist’s Statement: ‘She was a big success’ is a solo-dance piece that Fabiola Guillén originally created to be performed by her. As in other of her choreographic works, she openly takes autobiographical material as starting point: she was told in an audition that she had a ‘beautiful body’, but that it was ‘weak’; at the moment, she took part of the comment as a compliment, but then she started questioning the statement and her reaction to it. In this piece, she tried to explore a part of her own perception of a female body, her body, influenced by the education she received as a child (which includes the notion that women must be demure and delicate, and that a beautiful woman cannot be intelligent, and vice versa, as well as religious precepts such as shame and guilt). Stripping the piece of distractors such as lights and sound, and using some recognizable and stereotyped movements, she aimed to challenge her preconceptions, while experiencing different feelings during the creative process, such as shame, amusement, and discomfort.

Fabiola Guillén is a Mexican choreographer, performer, and dance educator. She holds a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery from Universidad de las Américas Puebla (UDLAP), where she also earned a Bachelor of Dance with Honors despite having started dancing in her mid-twenties. In 2017, she was awarded one of the ‘Emerging Leaders in the Americas Program’ scholarships by the Canadian Government for an academic exchange at Concordia University in Montreal. After concluding her studies, she participated in Bates Dance Festival – Youth Arts Program 2018 as a Dance Education Intern. The same year, she worked as a performer with French choreographer Xavier Le Roy in Mexico City. As an independent choreographer, she has presented her work in Mexico, USA, Canada, and Hungary, and as an educator, her journey includes countries such as Turkey and Croatia. She is currently teaching contemporary dance for children in India.


Choreographer: Jessica Murphy
Company: Sylvestre Wilde Dance Collective
Performers: Jessica Murphy and Cylene Walker-Willis
Music: “Inquietude” by Jessica Murphy

Artist’s Statement: This duet explores the physical reaction to touching broken glass.

Jessica Murphy is a teaching artist with a curiosity about how groups of artists make work collaboratively. She received her Master of Fine Arts degree in Dance from Texas Woman’s University and a Master in the Art of Teaching degree and Bachelor of Arts degree from Sweet Briar College where she double majored in dance and education. Jessica has shared her love for teaching and choreography throughout Virginia and Texas to students with ages ranging from 3 years to 90+. Murphy’s philosophy of education is student-centered and she is experimenting with more collaborative methods to make her dance-making process reflective of this philosophy. Born and raised in Virginia, Murphy currently resides in Texas where she serves as an adjunct professor of dance at Collin College, Richland College, and the University of North Texas. To see more of her work visit


Performers: Sandra Paola López Ramírez, Mindy Grossberg, Holly Maiz, and Linda Rodeck

Artists’ Statement: Four women, each in a different decade of her life, perform as an improvisational ensemble, inhabiting, listening and expressing from the body’s endless loops of sensation, feeling, thought and imagination. The reality of the body’s finite container meets the surreality of the imagination’s infinite ability to connect and expand. To improvise is to accept wholeheartedly the current conditions of time, space, and physicality; and at the same time, to infuse the confines of the present with the nectar of the imagination and the transmuting properties of empathy. It is no small thing to listen. To listen, and join another or others, either by attuning or contrasting spatial signatures, timing, intensity, pitch, volume, tension, textual content—is to inhabit an original state of play that gives rise to new futures and reframes memory.

Sandra Paola López Ramírez (BFA, EdM) is a latinoamericana dancemaker, improviser and performance activist. Her community-based interdisciplinary work plays with gender, identity, and sociality, and it has taken her through the US, Colombia, Brazil, Cyprus, France, Canada and Mexico. Since moving to the United States from her native Colombia in 2004, she has developed her practice to integrate her creative process and her community organizing efforts. Driven by her commitment to social transformation, Sandra Paola co-founded and directs the Institute for Improvisation and Social Action (ImprovISA) – an organization empowering diverse populations to develop through performance and improvisation in the U.S.-Mexico border. She is currently dance faculty at the University of Texas at El Paso and is completing her MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts with a Performance Creation concentration at Goddard College.

Mindy Grossberg is the Program Coordinator for ArtStreet, a community art studio and a program of Albuquerque Health Care for the Homeless. For over twenty years, Mindy has combined her belief in community building and collaborative art-making to guide her socially-engaged work. Along with her Masters in Community Social Work and her own art making practice, she has studied Action Theater (AT) for over 12 years and has been teaching this form of physical improvisation for over three years. Because art making helps break down boundaries both within and between individuals, Mindy believes that creativity in all forms is a necessary component toward social change. She is currently investigating how physical improvisation can support the dismantling of these barriers.

Holly Maiz, MA, DTR is an improvisational performance artist and teacher. She has an MA in Somatic Psychology, is a Registered Dance/Movement Therapist and a Certified Action Theater Teacher. Holly began dancing as a youngster, studying Ballet and later, Modern Dance. Her BS in Dance is from UW Madison, where she studied with A. A. Leath (improvisational movement) and Claudia Melrose (Nikolais Technique). As a teen, Holly became interested in Eastern philosophy and Zen. She began meditation practice and noticed that both improvisation and meditation emphasize direct experience. This interest led her to Naropa, a Buddhist-inspired University that integrates eastern wisdom studies with traditional western arts and scholarship. While at Naropa, she met Ruth Zaporah, founder of Action Theater. The play and work of zen koan and improvisational physical theater continues many years later. Holly teaches and performs throughout the US. She lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Linda Rodeck is a performance artist, writer, and teacher. She improvises nationally and internationally in solo and collaboration. For the past fifteen years, she has studied with and performed with master improviser, Ruth Zaporah and the International Action Theater Ensemble. Linda regularly teaches the techniques of Depth Improvisation and Action Theater at the Tabula Rasa Studio in New Mexico.


Choreographer: Ilana Goldman
Performer: Anna Patsfall
Music: Hildur Gudnadottir

Artist’s Statement: Inspiration for this solo comes from the evil fairy, Carabosse, in “The Sleeping Beauty,” who seeks revenge for not being invited to Princess Aurora’s christening. As she checks for her name on the long list of invited guests, she becomes strangled by her spite, struggling to free herself of the oppressive shell of resentment she carries with her.

Ilana Goldman (MFA) is an Assistant Professor of dance at Florida State University and has taught and choreographed for schools and companies across the country. She received her BFA from The Juilliard School, where she was awarded the John Erskine Prize for Artistic and Academic Excellence, and her MFA from the University of Washington. She danced professionally with Oakland Ballet, Sacramento Ballet, Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, Trey McIntyre Project, and as a guest artist with Alonzo King LINES Ballet. Her short dance films, Convergence, Fledgling, and InterState, have screened at numerous international film festivals. She has presented papers focusing on community engagement at the World Dance Alliance Annual Conference in Honolulu, Hawaii, World Dance Alliance Global Summit in St. John’s, Newfoundland, the Hawaii International Conference of Arts and Humanities, and the National Dance Education Organization’s Annual Conference in San Antonio, Texas.



Choreographer & Performer: Christina Mitchell
Music: Nico Antuna Cooper

Artist’s Statement: UnBRIDALed explores the myth of the bride and all the unrealistic expectations that come along with that blissful day. It challenges the tropes of femininity, sexuality and the role of a “wife.”

Christina Mitchell is a local El Pasoan who has been active in the dance community as an educator and artist for the past twelve years. She received her MED and BFA in dance performance from the University of Texas at El Paso. Christina’s choreography has been presented at El Paso Community College, New Mexico State University, The Art of the Solo in Birmingham, the American College Dance Festival, the Youth America Grand Prix in Cordova, Mexico, and in the Bailando International Dance Festival. Christina was a member of the Mackenzie Rosales Dance and Company from 2006-2010 and Another River Interdisciplinary Ensemble from 2014-2015. Christina is dedicated to creating meaningful work that connects people to themselves, others, and their environment through teaching and choreography. She truly believes that movement-intelligence promotes reflection, self-worth, cultural sensitivity, inventiveness and change. Christina is currently a member of Tumbleweed Collective and looks forward to creating and performing work with such a wonderful group of caring and gifted individuals.


Choreographers and Performers: Reyna Mondragon and Ashlea Sovetts
Music: Music: “Underneath” Edited by Brittany Padilla, Music Composition by Ben Frost “Venter”

Artist’s Statement: This collaborative duet explores shifts of togetherness through fluidity, gaze and controlled partner work.

Reyna Mondragon is a dancer and choreographer born in Chihuahua Chihuahua, Mexico. Mondragon at the age of nineteen began her dancing career at Collin Community College in Plano, Texas. Later she went on to the University of North Texas where she majored in dance and minored in Spanish. After graduation, Mondragon moved to Minneapolis, Minnesota for a year where she produced her own show and performed alongside Blake Nellis. After a year performing Mondragon applied to graduate school moved back to Denton, Texas, and is currently attending Texas Woman’s University where she is incorporating technology into her dance making process. After graduation, Mondragon will create a dance department that focuses in praxis at Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Peru in Lima, Peru.

Ashlea Sovetts is a multifaceted dance artist. As an educator, she emphasizes a somatic approach by incorporating her certified yoga teacher training. She values breath, fluidity and awareness of one’s presence in relationship to others. As a performer, Ashlea enjoys collaborating in different creative processes. As a choreographer, Ashlea is inspired by political movements and real-life experiences. She deconstructs these events to generate movement in non-linear narratives. As an advocate, Ashlea educates individuals and political officials about why dance matters. As an administrator, Ashlea has experience coordinating performance and recruitment events, advising students and organizing budgets as the Touring Manager for Staibdance’s international dance intensive. Ashlea, Originally from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina graduated Cum Laude from Winthrop University and holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in Dance. Currently, she is the Recruitment Coordinator and MFA candidate at Texas Woman’s University in Denton, Texas.


Choreographer: Hannah Fischer
Fischer Dance
Performers: Hannah Fischer and Jeff Wallace
Music: Original sound by Patrick Quigley.

Artist’s Statement: water/skin investigates ideas of permeability, trust, and negotiation. The duet explores the liminal space between bodies and histories, winding and unwinding, setting and resetting.  water/skin pt 1 premiered in July 2018, presented by Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival at After Hours.

Hannah Fischer created Fischer Dance in 2014 to make space for contemporary dance-making in South Bend, IN. Before launching Fischer Dance, she spent three years in St. Louis, MO with Leverage Dance Theater as their assistant director and production coordinator. While with Leverage, Hannah worked extensively in public schools with arts-integration, as well as working with underserved youths in the juvenile system and residential care.  Hannah has had the pleasure of working closely with some of her modern dance-making heroes; Victoria Marks, Susan Marshall, David Dorfman, Kim Epifano, Jane Comfort, Nejla Yatkin, Matthew Janczewski, Donna Uchizono, Bridgman|Packer, KJ Holmes, and Nancy Stark Smith. In 2017 Hannah received an Individual Artist Grant through the Indiana Arts Commission. Earlier in her career, Hannah was awarded support through the Margaret Hill Visiting Artist Endowment, the Fauman Foundation Fund, the Catherine-Dooley Grant for Peace and Justice, and was an Associate Artist in Residence at the Atlantic Center for the Arts in 2014.  In her dance-making, Hannah is collaborative and interdisciplinary, firmly believing that dance has the power to transform a community. Up until 2018, Hannah was the only modern dance-maker regionally, paving the way for New Industry Dance. Her specialties are in community engagement, immersive performance experiences, and integrated media and dance. After four years of producing independent dance work in South Bend, Indiana, Hannah now resides in Salt Lake City, Utah as she pursues her MFA in Modern Dance at the University of Utah.

Mudhugare Yeshoda (Kuchipudi)

Choreographers: Dr. Vempati Chinna Satyam
Performer: Dr. Anuradha Murali

Mudhugare Yeshoda: describes the child Krishna as precious gems like a child to any mother. This piece is in the Indian classical style of dance known as Kuchipudi, with steps and body movements unique to this dance style.

Dr. Anuradha Murali, Artistic Director of Mrudani School of Performing Arts, had formal training in Bharathanatyam from Radha Srinivassan and Shanta and VP Dhananjayan (India) and Adyar K. Lakshman (India). She has also received formal training in Kuchipudi by P. Rajeshwari and Guru Vempati Chinna Satyam, Kuchipudi Art Academy, (India). As an Adjunct Professor of Dance, Anuradha has taught Bharathanatyam and Kuchipudi at Columbia College, Columbia, SC. As an Instructor of Dance, she has taught Bharathanatyam at the University of South Carolina, Dance Department. She has written several scholarly articles in teaching Bharathanatyam and Kuchipudi at community colleges and universities for dance majors. Anuradha, a recipient of numerous grants/awards for dance choreography and dance performance, has performed at prestigious national and international festivals including India, Japan, France, South Korea, Greece, Italy and Brazil.

Claramente Clara

Choreographer: Julius Brewster Cotton
Company: Universidad de Las Americas Puebla, Trinidad & Tobago
Performers: Jaime Becerra Bermejo, Claudia Berea Ceceña, Eder de Jesus Arrasquito Barrios, and Natalia Katharine Quezada Shrimpton

Artist’s Statement: Clara Schumann was a musical prodigy, who at 14 composed her Piano Concerto. While successful as a young musician and composer it was her marriage to Robert Schumann which changed her musical ambitions. As an artist, wife, and mother, Clara Schumann, while in love with her husband and family, felt herself betraying music for love and pondered why she as a woman should have to choose while the same would not be said for men. This work portrays the young Clara Wieck and her father as she envisions her life as a mature artist, one of possibility, and the married Clara Schumann as she remembers her life as a musician before the struggles of life with Robert Schumann.

Julius Brewster Cotton, master teacher of Horton technique and classical ballet, choreographer and philosopher, began his early dance education in Brooklyn, NY. , where he studied the techniques of Martha Graham, Jose Limon, and Lester Horton among others. He has undergraduate degrees en Literature, African American History and Dance from SMU and a MFA from Hollins University. Julius is currently studying for his Ph.D in Visual Arts.He has performed with Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, Ballethnic Dance Theatre, Contemporary West Dance Theatre, and varios other companies in the USA and Mexico. He has performed in television and in the musicals Wicked and Peter Pan and is currently a full time professor of dance at the University of Americas Puebla.

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