So I have not worked on choreography on a group of dancers or any other dancers since June of 2013. About a year and a half. That is the longest amount of time between choreographed works since 1996 when I sustained a foot injury and before I started my dance company.
In 2013 two things happened. I had some health issues that made the commitment to any regular rehearsal schedule very difficult, especially during the winter months. My immune system was not doing well due to over use of antibiotics due to several dental infections. From 2007-2012 I did not have health or dental insurance and could not really afford to go to the dentist. I would catch a cold which immediately turned into chronic bronchitis and often pneumonia. The treatment was usually more antibiotics which I realized was compromising my immune system. I am still in the process of restoring my health but things are much better.
I did not dance much in the fall of 2013 and developed Plantar Faciitis in my right foot. Luckily I had health insurance and was able to get the physical therapy I needed and was able to start dancing in July of 2014. Since then things have gotten much better. Generally as long as I keep dancing I feel healthy. A Choreography Residency at Green St. Studios during the month of November in 2014 was perfectly timed for helping me heal my body as well as create material for a new work to premiere in February. Here is a recent video of that work.
Finally in 2012 it caught up with me and I had to have a root canal in one of my back teeth. With my Mass Health I was able to get the root canal at the BU Dental school. It took 3 visits 3 hours each, 9 hours total to get the work done and then several more visits to get a crown made but I got the work completed by 2014. Yes it took 2 years. Mostly because other wisdom teeth and other teeth kept getting infected and needing care. Finally I have caught up on all of this and am seeing a regular dentist. The dental school took too long and I did not want to wait to catch up on all of this.
In the meantime I have been in Boston for the last 2 years taking care of my health and trying to re balence the pro biotics in my system and maintain my health. I’ve learned a lot through the use of herbs, improving my diet how to maintain my health.
I was able to keep producing and curating the Third Life Choreographer Series, monthly through 2012 and 2013, but in 2014 I opted to produce the event every 3 months with a larger roster of choreographers. The event sold out twice in 2014 and I will continue to produce this event 4-6 times a year as long as there is interest. I enjoy presenting other artists and having my own work seen by a wider audience. Our next event is on February 27th then on June 12th.
I think I will be ready in the next year to spend some more time making work in NYC and am really looking forward to it. I just visited NYC this past weekend to perform in a Salon event with Women in Motion. It was the first time I felt I could dance with a sense of freedom and not worry about injury which was very liberating. I had fun seeing a performance, Draftwork, a free event, with two choreographers Lisa Kusanagi and Peggy Florin at St. Marks Church earlier in the day. Even though it was a short trip it made me excited to spend more time there sometime soon. Meanwhile I am getting ready to start my spring semester teaching at UMass Boston.
The other issue that really needed to change was the process of moving from sublet to sublet to make work in NYC and to come to Boston to teach at UMass each spring semester. I lived in over 20 different places from 2008-2012.
Thanks to a 2012 Artist Fellowship Grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council I was to put a deposit down on an apartment in Cambridge and create a permanent home for myself which I plan to keep even if I spend time in NYC. It is a 2 bedroom with an office that I have been able to turn into a 4 bdrm apartment so that I can come back to Boston at anytime and have a place to stay for whatever work I need to do here.
The other thing that happened in 2013 was the death of my mother Anne Donovan in March of 2013. I needed to spend a bit more time with family. Now I am feeling healthier and stronger and feel ready to make new work.
I will be making a dance for “Channal Dance” and event involving Fort Point Channal Artists produced by Contropose Dance. The event is free and I will be creating a dance to music composed by Mark Warhol. You can get a free reservation here. There is a 4 tickets limit per person.
We will also show the new work as part of the Third Life Choreographer Series. We received an INTEGRATED ARTIST RESIDENCY EXCHANGE (THE I-ARE) at The Dance Complex which will allow us to continue expanding this new work through the spring!
INTEGRATED ARTIST RESIDENCY EXCHANGE Artists are afforded studio space to further their own explorations. A key goal for a successful residency exchange is that the artist, The Dance Complex and the wider community benefits from the knowledge and practice of the other is. The artist/s will be asked to share outcomes of their work from their time while in residence with the community and the public through dialogue, performance or other means.
I will post updates here on our process, check back on Wednesdays each week to see how the work is progressing!