Christopher Williams, hailed as "one of the most exciting choreographic voices out there" (The New York Times) and "the downtown prodigy" (The New Yorker), is a choreographer, dancer, and puppeteer who has created over thirty original and collaborative works in New York City and abroad since 1999. In addition to touring internationally in France, England, Italy, Spain, Holland, Colombia, and Russia, as well as nationally in Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Kalamazoo, Princeton, Carlisle, Bainbridge Island, and Interlochen, his works have been presented in many New York City venues including Lincoln Center, City Center, Danspace Project, Dance Theater Workshop, La MaMa, P.S. 122, HERE Arts Center, and the 92nd Street Y. His commissioners include the Opéra Royal du Château de Versailles/Opéra National de Bordeaux, English National Opera, Teatro Real/Perm Opera & Ballet Theater, Interlochen Center for the Arts, Dance Theater Workshop, Danspace Project, Harkness Dance Center, Philadelphia Dance Projects, and HERE Arts Center's Dream Music Puppetry Program. His collaborators include composer Gregory Spears and visual designer Andrew Jordan as well as renowned directors Peter Sellars and Michel Fau along with musical director Raphaël Pichon whose productions won five Golden Mask Awards at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow and the Grand Prix du Syndicat de la Critique 2015 in the category of "best Spectacle Lyrique of the year” at the Opéra Royal du Château de Versailles respectively. Christopher received a New York Dance & Performance "Bessie" Award for his work Ursula and the 11,000 Virgins (2005) and has been awarded fellowships from The New York Foundation for the Arts, The Foundation for Contemporary Arts, the Center for Ballet and the Arts, and the Bogliasco Foundation for multiple residencies at the Liguria Study Center for Arts & Humanities in Bogliasco, Italy. He has also been awarded creative residencies at the Kaatsbaan International Dance Center, Joyce SoHo, Dance New Amsterdam, White Oak Plantation, The Yard, Bates Dance Festival, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, Mt. Tremper Arts, Robert Wilson's Watermill Center, on Captiva Island via the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, through Movement Research, the Harkness Dance Center, the HERE Artist Residency Program, Bainbridge Dance Center, the Tyrone Guthrie Center in Annaghmakerrig, Ireland, the Djerassi Resident Artists Program, and Yaddo. Christopher received his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1999 from Sarah Lawrence College as well as a diploma from the École Internationale de Théâtre Jacques Lecoq in Paris. www.christopherwilliamsdance.org
ModernMedieval is a new, all female ensemble created by Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek, former member of the world-renowned vocal quartet Anonymous 4. The mission of the ensemble is to present programs that combine medieval chant and polyphony with new commissions and music from later eras. ModernMedieval takes the vocal techniques developed by Anonymous 4 for singing medieval music and combines them with a fresh approach to programming that introduces this wonderful music to new audiences.
Eliza Bagg is a Brooklyn and Los Angeles-based musician. As a vocalist, she has worked losely ith a number of prominent and emerging composers including John Zorn, Michael Gordon, Judd Greenstein, Christopher Cerrone, Caroline Shaw, and aniel Wohl, among others. Recent and upcoming performances include Michael Gordon’s opera Acquanetta at the 2018 Prototype Festival, Amy Beth Kirsten’s chamber work Savior with The Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s musicNOW series, John Supko’s The_Oper& at Duke Performances, and appearances at the Kennedy Center, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Kitchen, the Guggenheim, Infinite Palette, Iceland Airwaves, and the Ecstatic Music Festival. Bagg has been noted for her unique sound, which Pitchfork compared to “a lovelorn alien reaching out from the farthest reaches of the galaxy.” Bagg sings regularly with Roomful of Teeth, and tours with them across the United States. In addition, she creatively leads and performs with her art pop band Pavo Pavo, whose music “sounds like it was beamed down from a glimmering utopian future” (Stereogum). Critically acclaimed for its “washed-out playfulness and wistful exuberance” (The Guardian), Pavo Pavo’s debut album was released on Bella Union in 2016. ecent and upcoming collaborations with electronic, pop, and indie-rock artists include Lorde, Tim Hecker, Olga Bell, Nick Zammuto, Helado Negro, and San Fermin.
Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek is a former member of the acclaimed vocal quartet Anonymous 4 and currently is Artistic Director of ModernMedieval. She has a reputation as a versatile and accomplished soloist, specializing in early and new music. She has collaborated with many composers including Judith Weir, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Luciano Berio, Richard Einhorn, Andrew Lovett, Daniel Thomas Davis, Gregory Spears, Phil Kline and David Lang, appearing as a guest soloist with many distinguished ensembles including Ensemble Modern Frankfurt, Ensemble Intercontemporain Paris, Washington Bach Consort, Hesperion XXI,Distinguished Concerts International New York. Singcircle, Continuum, Washington Square Contemporary Music Society, Ixion, Dogs of Desire, Ekmeles, S.E.M. Ensemble and the Locrian Chamber Ensemble. She was a featured soloist on the Grammy Award-winning album Calling All Dawns. She has sung with English National Opera, The Royal Opera Covent Garden, Opera Factory Zurich and London, Center for Contemporary Opera and American Opera Projects, premiering roles in works by Daniel Thomas Davis, Sir Harrison Birtwistle and Iannis Xenakis, among others, and was the mezzo soloist in the world premieres of The Origin (Richard Einhorn) and Requiem for the Titanic (Philip Hammond). She holds degrees from Queens University Belfast and Columbia University, and has a D.M.A in Performance from The Juilliard School. Jacqueline is also a voice teacher: she is an Adjunct Professor at Fordham University, Columbia University Teachers College, and CUNY Manhattan College, and maintains a private studio in New York.
Bay Area native Marc Armitano started playing the Viola da Gamba at 13. His interest in early music continued to flourish when he was accepted to Ruth Asawa School of the Arts in San Francisco. He later studied in the Early Music program at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore. While at Peabody,Marc played in Baroque and Renaissance ensembles using replicas of period instruments. Marcspecializes in French Baroque music but also loves branching out and exploring obscure repertoire such as English and German Lyra viol music, Division music, and music for the Pardessus de Viole, the smallest member of the Viola da Gamba family.
Marc has collaborated with artists such as FKA Twigs, the fashion house Bode, and Charm City Baroque Ensemble.
Isabella Bergamin received her BFA in Dance at Point Park University. She is originally from Westchester, New York, where she studied under Rose-Marie Menes at the Westchester Ballet Center for the Performing Arts. During her time at Point Park, she has had the privilege to perform in works by choreographers such as James Gregg, Stefanie Batten-Bland, Dominic Walsh, and Matthew Powell. This summer, she attended the Colorado Conservatory of Dance for Dominic Walsh’s Compass Coaching Project. Most recently, she has been working at the Pillow Project with Pearlann Porter in her project,Thought Pockets.
Lindsay Fisher (originally from Butler, PA) spent the bulk of her career in New York City dancing with Helen Simoneau Danse (rehearsal director), Nathan Trice/RITUALS, Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company, Collective Body/ Dance Lab, Ellen Cornfield, Daniel Charon, Camille A. Brown, Ayo Jackson, Brenda Daniels, Sean Sullivan, Steve Rooks, Sidra Bell and VIA Dance Collaborative (founding member). She has performed in Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera’s West Side Story and North Shore Music Theater’s Victor/Victoria. She received her BFA from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts in 2002 where she was the recipient of the prestigious Sarah Graham Kenan Endowed Fellowship of Excellence. She also received her MFA in Choreography from the University of Iowa in 2014 as a Graduate Teaching Assistant and as the first recipient of the Strategic Initiative Fellowship recognizing excellence in her field. She was recently awarded a Community Supported Artist Grant through the New Hazlett Theater (Pittsburgh, PA) and presented an evening of her work in April, 2017. She is also the co-founder and co-director of FORGE Summer Dance Intensive, hosted at Slippery Rock University. This year, she is excited to be joining the dance faculties of both Slippery Rock University and Point Park University, in Pittsburgh.
Frances Tirado Molina spent the past summer (2018) in Vieques, Puerto Rico. She spent weekends learning merengue, bachata, and salsa, and spent weekdays volunteering, writing, and generally still dancing whenever she heard music play. She has choreographed select pieces for Pitt Stages, the Pitt Dance Ensemble, and full musicals for the Pitt Musical Theatre Club, Red Eye, and Heritage High School’s Drama Department (Leesburg, VA). Growing up, she trained at the Loudoun School of Ballet, and attended summer intensives at the Washington Ballet. This past spring, Frances worked as the PBT ambassador for Pitt. Frances is in her senior year at the University of Pittsburgh, studying nonfiction writing and theater, and dancing, generally, whenever she hears music play.
Tara Nixon graduated magna cum laude from Southern Methodist University with a BFA in Dance Performance and a minor in Business. She was classically trained through the Royal Academy of Dance Ballet Syllabus, worked on scholarship at Steps on Broadway and studied with River North Dance, Chicago. Tara performed with the Pittsburgh Opera and Atlanta Opera in their recent productions of Puccini's Turandot. In New York, she danced as a principal dancer with SynthesisDANCE, performed with The Movement Initiative, Jazz Choreography Enterprises, Inc and has worked with choreographers: Rick Attwell, Joe Lanteri, Geoffrey Doig-Marx, Ashley Carter, Christy Kuglar and Denise La Pointe. Tara is excited to return to dancing and teaching part time at Point Park University after welcoming her baby boy in December.
Born in South Korea and raised in the Midwest, Maree ReMalia is a choreographer, performer, educator and certified Gaga instructor. merrygogo is her platform for collaboratively crafting contemporary dance works. Her choreography has been commissioned by Gibney DoublePlus Festival (NY) under the curation of Bebe Miller and has been presented at venues such as Dance Place (DC), Kelly Strayhorn Theater (PA), La MaMa Experimental Theater Club (NY), Movement Research at the Judson Church (NY), and Daegu International Dance Festival (South Korea). Recent collaborations include David Bernabo, Blaine Siegel and Jil Stifel, slowdanger, and Hatch Arts Collective. She has performed in the work of Gabriel Forestieri, Bebe Miller, Michael J. Morris, Ohad Naharin, Lida Winfield, and Noa Zuk. Since earning her MFA at The Ohio State University, she has traveled frequently working with individuals across disciplines, identities, and experience levels. She was invited faculty at Bates Dance Festival (2018) and was selected as the Andrew W. Mellon Interdisciplinary Choreographer for Middlebury College Movement Matters Residency (2015-2017). Currently based in Pittsburgh, she is adjunct faculty at Point Park University and is premiering her evening-length work, A Letter Compiled From All Letters at New Hazlett Theater in June 2019. https://mahiree.wordpress.com
Anna Thompson is a movement artist, vocalist, producer, facilitator and co-founder of PGH based multidisciplinary performance duo, slowdanger. Her work with slowdanger has been featured in Dance Magazine’s ‘25 to Watch’ 2018, KST’s Freshworks Residency,Pearlarts Studio’s Pearl Diving Movement Residency, the New Hazlett’s CSA Series, and Springboard Danse Montreal in June 2018. From proscenium theater and gallery to nightclub and dive bar, her work shape shifts to adapt to a variety of containers. She has collaborated in movement and/or sound with Taylor Knight (slowdanger), Maree ReMalia/merrygogo, Sidra Bell, Jasmine Hearn, Shantelle Courvoisier Jackson, MICHIYAYA Dance, Bill Shannon, the Pillow Project/Pearlann Porter, David Bernabo and Jil Stifel. www.slowdangerslowdanger.com
The Blanket's initial project brought post-modern choreographer Lucinda Childs to Pittsburgh to set 4 of her early "silent works" on our dancers. Working with Ms. Childs, dancers Lindsay Fisher, Eric Lobenberg, Bianca Melidor, Matt Pardo, Caitlin Scranton, Jil Stifel, and Sara Spizzichini, performed these works outside at the Monongahela Amphitheater. Read about the performance here !
photos by Ben Viatori - @v.foto