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As an artist, I strive to communicate internal thoughts and emotions with the body as the agent of expression. Emotional signification and storytelling are an integral part of my process. Through a combination of historical research, personal narrative, and movement investigation, I have embarked on a choreographic journey of exploration. I aim to express, through dance, the connection between text and movement, recollection, and experience.
Pomegranate: the flesh floats up and the seeds float down, a duet, was the first piece of choreography I created for this project. Initially, I was inspired by the history of the Tarantella, a traditional Italian dance originally said to save women from the venom of the tarantula. After beginning the creative process, I turned to an image of the stereotyped housewife of 1950s America. My idea of the era shares a story with the Tarantella and resonates with me personally. I composed movement and text to depict the narrative of a woman trapped in an oppressive relationship.
I continued to work both with the combination of choreographing movement and text, and with expressing the stories of women through dance. Stealing Whispers, my second piece of choreography for this project featured a quintet of women. The piece was presented in The Old Gym at Bard College. Using fresh foliage, tea lights, indulgent foods, and the sounds of a thunderstorm, I transformed the space to reflect my desire to focus the audience’s attention to recollection. Through movement and text, Stealing Whispers recounted recollections held and hidden in the body, only to be triggered by one of the five senses.
Pomegranate and Stealing Whispers embody my artistic exploration. My presence as an artist and as a woman was evident in both pieces. Though only several women danced, stories of many women were told.
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Berger, Olivia Jo, "Embodied (Choreography: Pomegranate: the flesh floats up and the seeds float down; Stealing Whispers" (2013). Senior Projects Spring 2013. 364.
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