The Legible Bod(ies) will perform a solo piece titled NarcissUS on April 30th at HATCH. Read more about The Legible Bod(ies) below…
Noel makes dance happen. She holds her BA in Dance and Biology from Goucher College where she worked with artists including Miguel Gutierrez, Kathleen Hermsdorf, Sara Pearson and Patrik Widrig. Noel continues her education through workshops and master classes in NYC and at festivals throughout New England. She is on faculty at Elms College and the Artistic Dance Conservatory, specializing in contemporary jazz technique. As a guest artist, she has enjoyed teaching and creating work for The Williston Northampton School, Shadows Dance Art Experience, Westfield High School, The Loomis Chaffee School, and the NCAA Elite 8 Dance Team among others. She is also the coach for the Elms College Dance Team and Founder/Director of the the Elms College Community Concert for Charity. As a dancer for Eclipse Dance Company, Noel has performed throughout the Northeast at events including the Boston Contemporary Dance Festival, Plymouth State Dance Premier, and the Brooklyn Dance Festival. Her first project as Artistic Director, The Legible Bod(ies) made its performance premier at the 2014 Southern Vermont Dance Festival. When not in the studio or on stage, Noel enjoys bringing the art of dance to Western Mass audiences as Board Member of the Massachusetts Dance Festival. Through her work, Noel has brought dance performances to events large and small, broadening community appreciation for dance and expanding the role of dance as a tool for social and cultural change. You can keep in touch with Noel and learn more by visiting noelstjean.com.
Marissa Chmiel began dancing at the age of three at Dance Workshop in Ludlow, MA. Upon entering high school, she began studying at the New England Dance Conservatory in East Longmeadow, MA with Kennneth Lipitz and Shelley Ziebel in the Conservatory’s Company, known as the New England Dance Theater, and in their Pre-Professional Company with concentrations in ballet, pointe, and modern dance. As an undergrad at Elms College, Marissa began dancing with the Elms College Dance Team (ECDT) with Noel St. Jean-Chevalier as Coach and Choreographer. During her last two years of ECDT, Marissa took on the roles of Rehearsal Captain and Team Captain. Marissa graduated with a Bachelors of Science in Nursing and currently works as a Registered Nurse. Marissa also dances with Eclipse Dance Company and is very excited to begin a new journey with The Legible Bod(ies)!
Jennifer Roy grew up in Ellington, Connecticut where she attended a local dance studio for 15 years. While there, she studied all forms of dance, performing competitively and receiving awards for her work in contemporary dance. She was also a member of the Ellington High School Dance Team and worked as a student instructor, inspiring young dancers and assisting with classes. Jennifer is currently a freshmen at Elms College studying Communication Sciences and Disorders. She continues to feed her passion for dance as a member of the Elms College Dance Team and as the newest Bod(y).
Haley Zdebski is a Connecticut native, who graduated Magna Cum Laude from SUNY, The College at Brockport, with a BFA in dance in the Spring of 2014. Haley has had the pleasure of working with the Bill Evans Dance Company, Mariah Maloney, and Shelley Ziebel. Haley attended the American Dance Festival on full scholarship in the Summer of 2013, where she reconstructed and performed Merce Cunningham repertoire. She also worked at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy Summer Intensive 2014-2015. Currently, she works as a teaching artist and ensemble member for the Judy Dworin Performance Projects, and a company member of DancEnlight under the direction of Lorelei Chang. Haley is the Assistant Director of Figments Youth Dance Ensemble out of Hartford, CT. Over the last few years, she has performed her own work at various venues in New York and in Connecticut. Haley also works at the Ethel Walker School, Stafford Academy of Dance and EdanSe Company and Ballroom.
Why is it helpful to present a work in progress?
Feedback and growth are essential to the choreographic process. Presenting this work in progress will allow me to asses the audience’s perspective and understand if my work resonates with the viewer. One of my goals as a choreographer is to use the body as a tool to convey feeling, story and experiences with my audience. As I strive to create art that achieves this goal, it is valuable to check in with my viewers and gain insight from their experience.
Who are the most rewarding dancers for you to work with and why?
Open dancers make my work possible. I don’t always need a studio full of the most accomplished technicians or the the most physically cohesive troupe. I just want to be surrounded by artists who are willing to take risks, be vulnerable, and who trust in the process. As evidenced by our company members, no two movers are alike, and I think that fact, combined with their collective willingness to explore, makes for a rewarding creative experience.
Why is it important to present this piece of choreography to audiences in NYC?
I think oftentimes NYC is viewed as a mecca for dance. Many great artists create and show their work here. Audiences flock here to see great art. Having the opportunity to feed from that energy is powerful. Additionally, I am fiercely proud of my roots in Western MA. I think that there is a great emerging dance scene in the Pioneer Valley, and I hope to represent that community. Creating connections between the artists of NYC and Western MA can also offer great opportunity for artistic growth.
What should HATCH audiences look forward to in your work?
THRILLS! CHILLS! EDGE OF YOUR SEAT EXCITEMENT!
No, seriously though, I hope the audience is moved. I hope they connect with the dancers and the movement in some way that makes them glad they were there. I cannot assure that we will all have the same experience, but I hope we all enjoy it.