Posts Tagged ‘Headlong Performance Institute’

Fringe at 20 Profile: Nichole Canuso

Posted September 9th, 2016
Above photo:  Nichole Canuso and Dito Van Reigersberg in TAKES (photo by Lars Jan)



Nichole Canuso and Scott McPheeters in The Garden (photo by Peggy Woolsey)

Name: Nichole Canuso

Type of Artist: Choreographer/Performer

Companies: Headlong, Moxie, Pig Iron, Nichole Canuso Dance Company

List of Fringe shows I’ve participated in:

As Choreographer/Performer:
1997 – Bored on a Sunday
1998 – Enter Night
1999 – Nichole Canuso’s Dance Shorts
2000 – InnerState Thirteen
2005 – We Spar Down the Lane
2006 – Fail Better
2007 – Wandering Alice (in progress)
2008 – Wandering Alice
2010 – TAKES
2011 – As the Eyes of the Seahorse
2012 – Return Return Departure
2013 – The Garden
2016 – Pandæmonium

As co-artistic director of Moxie Dance Collective (with Christy Lee, Heather Murphy, Leah Yeager, Peter D’Orsaneo):
2001, 2002, 2003 – We created group shows of short works. We thought of them as albums, a curated set of overlapping ideas.

As a co-host of The Rockies, Philadelphia’s dance awards:
2004 – with co-hosts Emmanuel Delpech and Lee Etzold we performed as our characters in Pig Iron’s FLOP (Snow, Millie and Fleur Savage)


Nichole Canuso and Michael Kiley in As the Eyes of the Seahorse (photo by Matt Saunders)

As a performer/company member of Headlong:
1997 – Pop Songs
1998 – St*r W*rs and other stories
2000 – Pusher
2002 – Britany’s Inferno
2006 – Cell
2007 – Explanatorium
2009 – more

Additional performances:
1997 and 1998 – performer/company member with Karen Bamonte Dance works
1999 – David Gammon’s No More Masterpieces.
1997 – 2003 – the cabarets!!! Deb Block would curate those and I would always agree to perform short numbers in the late night cabaret series. Super fun.

Fringe show I’m participating in for 2016Pandæmonium – Choreographer/Performer, Working in collaboration with Lars Jan and Geoff Sobelle

First Fringe I attended: 1997 – The highlight was biking around from venue to venue to perform and see shows. I had the feeling that the entire Philadelphia performance community was activated simultaneously in some way or another by the festival.  I was fresh out of college and it was incredibly exciting.  (I also performed that year in a couple shows, including a solo I’d made for myself)

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Rejected Thoughts Emerge at SoLow Fest

Posted May 31st, 2016

“It’s almost like kindergarten in a way because we give ourselves full permission to just be in awe or repulsed by what we’re sharing.”

"Rejected_Thoughts," Mira Treatman and Irina Varina

SoLow Fest begins soon and June 22–25, Mira Treatman and Irina Varina present Rejected Thoughts, a result of the performers’ exploration of what makes them vulnerable, joyous or angry. Through dance and dialogue they present the ideas they have labelled “rejected thoughts.” “It’s almost like kindergarten in a way because we give ourselves full permission to just be in awe or repulsed by what we’re sharing,” Mira told FringeArts. Mira and Irina, met at Headlong Performance Institute while studying hybrid performance making. They were paired to work on a provocation piece based on “found materials,” which they later performed at a FringeArts Scratch Night.

"Socks Brick," David Brick

“Sock Piece.” Photo: David Brick

Their shared interest in detail-oriented work, getting to the bottom of things, and the resulting laughter has led to their continued collaboration beyond Headlong. Irina has a background in film, and Mira in dance-theater. They began Rejected Thoughts with a Headlong tradition—a constellation—a collection of objects they were curious about. “We would then share, talk, embody, investigate things from our constellations, and give each other provocations. For example, after watching videos that Mira brought of different vloggers talking about very personal things on YouTube, I asked her if she wanted to make a vlog herself,” Irina explains. Although Mira’s vlog didn’t go beyond a rehearsal room, this research became important along with the idea of convenient intimacy, DNA tests, a speculum, and old family photos from Siberia.

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Rooster and Snowball, Two Crazy Mofos Come To Jumpstart!

Posted May 8th, 2013

On May 13 and 14, FringeArts presents our second annual Jumpstart, a showcase designed to identify new and emerging talent in the field of live performance. 2013 will feature six artists/companies performing short works, and we here at FringeArts Blog thought we’d catch up with them. Chelsea Murphy and Magda San Millan will be performing their dance-theater work Rooster & Snowball, in which, as they explain, “Two crazy motherfuckers try to change the modern dance world right before your very eyes.”

Well, let’s find out more!

The Snowball and the Rooster. Photo by David Brick.

The Snowball and the Rooster. Photo by David Brick.

FringeArts: Why is your show title Rooster & Snowball?

Magda: The title is the names of our characters and the names came from the hats: I found this hipster looking hat with a mohawk made of yarn and Chelsea’s is a round white thing. We wore our hats during tech and afterwards I was talking to David Brick [of Headlong Dance Theater] about the characters and the names came from the shapes of the hats. But in a great way the hats influenced the characters, crystallized their essence into this direction they were already going. The hats made the men, so to speak.

Chelsea: You keep saying “characters” but when people have called them “characters” in the past we’ve corrected them. I don’t think they are characters what we are doing. They’re more like . . . what’s that word?

Magda: Personas? Personalities? Essences?

Chelsea: I just think there isn’t any acting involved in this situation. These are the goofy, exhausted, angry-about-stuff versions of ourselves that come out when we are in rehearsal together.

Magda: Right, but to differentiate between the two: Rooster is more aggressive, explosive and Snowball has this icy exterior and weapon metaphor going on. Rooster throws the Snowball.

Chelsea: Why didn’t we think that??

Magda: I just did, I just did think of it.

Chelsea: Okay, but we also wanted to talk about the shared character trait between them: the “failed Rebel” we call it. Both of our performances are about this failed rebel.

Magda: Someone who projects rebel but follows all the rules on a daily basis.

Chelsea: Or not even that they project the rebel image, but other people perceive them that way.

Magda: But they still get nervous about jaywalking.

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Jenna Horton And The Birth Of Etna

Posted April 23rd, 2013

“I never thought I’d be doing solo-performance. I have a love/hate relationship working alone.”

Hello Etna Mounting!

Hello Etna Mounting!

Jenna Horton, a Philadelphia-based performing artist, brings her one-person performance work Mounting, Etna, May 13 and 14 to Jumpstart, the annual FringeArts showcase designed to identify new and emerging talent in the field of live performance. 2013’s Jumpstart features six artists/companies performing short works, and we here at FringeArts Blog thought we’d catch up with them. Today’s artist—Jenna!

Since attending the Headlong Performance Institute in 2009, Jenna Horton has worked with a number of local companies, including Inis Nua, The Berserker Residents, Team Sunshine Performance Corporation, The Bearded Ladies, Applied Mechanics, and Shakespeare in Clark Park.  She is currently a resident artist at Plays and Players Theater and holds a B.A. in performance studies from Brown University. Check out her website: jennabethhorton.apostrophenow.com, if you’re into that sort of thing (checking out websites, that is).

FringeArts: Why is your show title Mounting, Etna? What inspired its creation?

Jenna Horton: The title is intentionally multivalent, as is a lot of the poetry in the show. For starters, there’s the physical action of mounting, as in mounting Etna as if she were a horse—your horse—or a person—your person [as in belonging to you]. Or you could be mounting her on your wall like you would a painting. Or maybe she’s doing that to you. Mind you, I’m also mounting the show of Etna. Not to mention, there’s a volcano on the east coast of Sicily named Mount Etna that’s very active and provides for the fertile soils surrounding the area. My parents also live in Etna, New Hampshire; but that’s more of a coincidence.

The birth of Etna came from the crashing of two things. I started a notebook a while back and labeled it “bad poetry” and have been putting stuff in it since. When I looked back over it, I realized many of the poems were cut from a similar cloth and could be interesting in a grouping. I started to get an idea for a woman that might host a cooking show, but she wouldn’t be in a kitchen. She’d be in a library and would pull out whisks from desks and smash eggs in books. The piece didn’t quite end up that way, but that was the initial impulse, which eventually combined with Carl Cork, another character of mine. He’s an older man who’s a hermit and deathly afraid of the world, so runs a radio show out of his basement to reach out to people. Anyway, I was working on him a lot, and getting tired of playing this guy who was SO sensitive and SO sad and SO scared and just SO, SO stuck. Instead, I kept wanting to be a WOMAN and a HUNGRY woman at that, who wasn’t as scared of the world but wanted to eat it and kill it even.

FringeArts: Where did you grow up?

Jenna Horton: I grew up in Denver, Colorado. Denver is beautiful, the weather is amazing, and the people are kind. And you can’t beat the close access to the Rockies or the amount of BIG SKY out there. Too many malls though. And everything is spread out and lots of new development, which I like less.  Lots of health nuts that wear their outdoor gear and bike or run. When I was a kid, there were a lot of prairie dogs there too.

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