Meet the Choreographer — Stephanie Deere
Stephanie will be presenting a group work for her company, MachineHistronica, to HATCH audiences at the Works Studio this Saturday, May 24th. Be at the Works Studio at 8pm to treat yourself to the final HATCH performance of the season!
Read on to learn about Stephanie and her dancers and be sure to join us for a Q+A session after the performance!
Questions for the Choreographer
Why is it helpful to present a work in progress?
I personally believe every work is forever a “work in progress”. Some are just further along than others. People are constantly changing based on their environment, life circumstances, personal goals, etc and this means our art is forever evolving. If I were to revive a previous work, I’m sure I would change some of it. Nothing is ever “finished”. And that is the beauty of creating. Dance only happens once. Even the same dance is different every time it is performed. The audience members have the pleasure of seeing something that will only happen one time. What a reason to appreciate those moments! Audience feedback is invaluable; whether the piece premiered ten years ago or was put together ten hours ago.
Who are the most rewarding dancers for you to work with and why?
I am currently working with the most rewarding dancers I could imagine. They are all my peers and dear friends. I have tremendous respect for them as artists and as women. I know that they are all technically trained and that is a very small piece of what is required of them in MachineHistrionica. I urge them to bring their own thoughts, experiences, and personalities to the work. I ask them to not only meet me at the physical movement, but to go on a journey with me through our hearts and our minds. I am only interested in creating work that is thought-provoking and emotionally moving, not just for audience members, but for my dancers as well. These five women all come to every rehearsal prepared physically, mentally, and emotionally for whatever the journey of dance-making requires of them. Sometimes literally blood, sweat, and tears. I am a very lucky choreographer.
Why is it important to present this piece of choreography to audiences in NYC?
“Every Direction, All At Once” is an extremely personal piece to me. As a choreographer, this is what I desire to present at this point in my career. The piece is about feminine social structure and the evolution of women’s lives in westernized cultures. While I do believe this is an important topic to address in art, I created this piece as a journey for me and my dancers. I am hoping that a genuinely personal journey for us will translate into a personal journey for our audience members.
What should HATCH audiences look forward to in your work?
HATCH audiences should look forward to being able to form a strong opinion about my work. Between the subject matter, intense physicality, character development, and music choices, I have tried to create a work that evokes thoughts and emotions from audience members. As long as I have created work that people have to think about, I am happy.
Stephanie Deere is a native of sunny and warm Southern California. Her earliest memories involve dance, and this complex art form continued to be a passion of hers throughout high school and college. Stephanie graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of California, Irvine with her BA in Dance and a minor in Management where she studied under notable choreographers such as Loretta Livingston, Lisa Naugle, Molly Lynch, Diane Diefenderfer, Jodi Gates, and Sharon Wray. After graduation, Stephanie moved to Hollywood in order to pursue her career in dance. After a year of commercial exploration and taking classes at The Edge and with Los Angeles Contemporary Dance Company, she decided to continue her dance training and come to New York City for a summer of classes. Stephanie was offered a position as a company member with Undertoe Dance Project and decided to stay in New York. After a debilitating lower back injury, she could no longer perform, however, she was still able to pursue another passion of hers, choreography. Stephanie launched her own company MachineHistrionica (machinehdance.com) in the fall of 2013. She feels extremely blessed to be creating work with such strong, intelligent, and talented women and to be premiering work in New York City.
Melanie Ciraulo: Melanie Ciraulo was born and raised in northern California, in Granite Bay, a small town outside of Sacramento. She has been dancing since the age of three, where she first started dancing for the Sacramento Kings. When she was six, she started training at a local studio, Off Broadway Dancing. There she trained in tap, ballet, jazz, lyrical, African, and musical theater, where she continued her training until college. Melanie then moved to Los Angeles to purse her dream of being on Broadway. She graduated with her Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts from AMDA (American Musical and Dramatic academy), and has now been living in New York City following her dreams for nearly two years.
Cristina Gustaitis: Cristina Gustaitis began her formal training with the Indiana University Ballet Theatre in Bloomington, Indiana. She holds a BS in Dance Performance from Ball State University. Since graduating with honors in 2011, she has relocated to New York City where she currently works as a freelance dancer and collaborator. Cristina has had the opportunity to study and perform in Italy, France and Sweden as well as throughout the Midwest and East coast. In addition to her work with MachineHistrionica, she is a company member of Treeline Dance Works. Her most recent performance credits include UPPAdanse, France, American Dance Guild Festival, NYC, Dance Chicago, Chicago, Breaking Ground Festival, AZ and Abundance International Festival, Sweden. She is thrilled to be a part of a creative group of individuals under the fearless and inspirational direction of Stephanie Deere.
Rebecca Hite Teicheira: Rebecca Hite Teicheira received her Masters of Fine Arts in dance choreography/ performance from Smith College in Northampton, MA, where she was also a teaching fellow and guest artist at Amherst College. Previously, Rebecca received her BA in dance from Connecticut College. During this time, she interned with BoSoma Dance of Boston, MA and Parsons Dance of New York City, and was fortunate enough to spend five months in Sydney, Australia, studying Graham technique and dance composition. Rebecca has collaborated with renowned artists such as David Dorfman, Lisa Race, Heidi Henderson, Adele Myers, Nicholas Leichter, Jeremy Nelson, Wally Cardona, and Monica Bill Barnes. Additionally, Rebecca has taught at the American College Dance Festival’s New England Region 2011 and 2012, the Sunday Dance Series in Florence, MA and Astoria Fine Arts Dance in Astoria, NY. Currently, Rebecca dances with The Feath3r Theory under the artistic direction of Raja Kelly as well as with Jessica Goldberg, and is co-creator and co-artistic director of Reject Dance Theatre . Rebecca’s work has been presented at Triskelion Arts in Brooklyn, NY, Built on Stilts Festival in Martha’s Vineyard, MA, MixMatch Dance Festival in Los Angeles, California, Trinity Repertory Theater in Providence, RI and the Astoria Dance Festival in Astoria, NY.
Monica Lessard: Monica Lessard is a spunky New Hampshire native trained classically in the RAD syllabus. She is a 2007 graduate of Point Park University’s (Pittsburgh, PA) Conservatory of Performing Arts with a Bachelor of Arts in Dance. Monica was a frequent performer with the Playhouse Dance Company at the Conservatory, training and performing under the direction of Doug Bentz, Judith Leifer-Bentz, Susan Stowe, Nicolas Petrov, Jay Kirk, Ron Tassone and Keisha Lalama-White. She moved to New York City in 2009 and has danced with GlitterKitty Productions and The Devon Smith Dance Company. Monica shares her love of dance on a daily basis teaching children and young adults all over the tri-state area. She is so thrilled to be a part of MachineHistrionica!
Colleen Pictor: Colleen Pictor, a native of Rochester, NY, graduated summa cum laude with a BFA in Dance from Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University. Currently residing in Brooklyn, Colleen is the founder and artistic director of the Pic PAC (the Pictor Performing Arts Company) and has presented her work at WAXworks, Your Move Dance Festival, The Tank, the Astoria Dance Festival, Legros Cultural Arts’ Women in Dance Summer Showcase, and The Hatch presenting series. In September 2013, she presented her work at The Rochester Fringe Festival in upstate New York. She is the recipient of the Margery Turner Choreography Award as well as the Colonel Henry Rutgers Research Scholar Award, and has performed the work of Garth Fagan, Mark Morris, Inbal Pinto, Keith Thompson, Jennifer Muller, and Stuart Loungway, among others. Colleen assists with the Paul Taylor School outreach program in PS 110 and is a staff member at the Front Desk at the Mark Morris Dance Group.
Hatch Presenting Series
Saturday, May 24th, 2014
131 W 24th St. 4th Floor
New York, NY 10011
Doors open at 7:30 , Show begins at 8:00