A performance evening consisting of a series of interactive dances in which a volunteer audience participant joins the UNSET2.0 professional ensemble. Together, in front of a live audience, they co-create an improvised dance. Dancers, musicians, lighting designers, and projection artists take their artistic cues off of the audience participant so seamlessly that the profiles of leader and follower, trained dancer and audience member are indistinguishable.
7 dancers, 1 Master of Ceremonies, 4 musicians, 1 lighting artist, 2 projection artists, 7-10 spects (audience participants)
The philosophy behind the show:
Everyone moves. Everyone can dance.
When we are young, our naivete gives us the freedom to dance with abandon. As we gain life experience and become adults, our skin hardens, our shoulders cave in, and our minds critique our moves. Though we may lose touch with our facility, we never fully lose our ability. What if this ability within you could be reignited?
The UNSET2.0 ensemble believes that there are some things that cannot be said with words, even some things that are best said without words--stories that are held so deeply in our bodies that they need to be expressed through movement. This is the power of dance. UNSET2.0 invites you to dance with us, to share your story with us!
For Spring, 2018 performances in Austin, TX:
director: Joanna Harmon
assistant directors: Christy Casey (assistant to the director and technical designer), Olivia Jimenez (director of therapeutic applications), Kevin Reilly (director of projections), Thrills (projection designer)
artistic advisors: Eve Schulte, Noah Bremer, Amy Morrow, Jeff Wirth
dancers: Kevin Armstrong, Veronica DeWitt, Ciceley Fullylove, John Grewell, Isaac Iskra (intern), Lily Kazanoff, Amy Morrow, Kelsey Oliver
musicians: The Good House Collective: Zoe Cagan (flute), Christian Clark (percussion), Nic Dominguez (bass), Brian Ellis (guitar)
The following individuals and groups contributed to the development of UNSET2.0. Thank you for your support of this project as “rehearsal participants,” as fellow brainstormers of ideas, as contributors of rehearsal space, as financial gifters, and as undying cheerleaders. Thank you, thank you, thank you:
Danielle Bardgette, Ben Bazan, Noah Bremer, Vickie Casey, Lawrence Coleman, Brian Felk, Eliot Gray Fisher, Samaneh Gharahi, Erica Gionfriddo, Erik Heger, Brooks Kasson, Tony Picciolo, Isabella Robledo, Mason Rosenthal, The Rude Mechs, Topher Sipes, Oliver Steck, Dan Szymanski, Rebecca Whitehurst, and The Deep Dive Team: Christy Casey, Carlo D’Amore, Matson Duncan, Tessa Goodnight, Joanna Harmon, Olivia Jimenez, Ben Nathan-Serio, Kevin Percival, and Jeff Wirth.
Kevin Armstrong is a 22 yr. old dancer and native Austinite who discovered a love for movement watching Billy Elliot and spending long hours dancing in his room at home. His favorite past-times are reading, writing, being outdoors, and improvising! In dance as in life. He's particularly excited about the possible therapeutic applications of UNSET, and is left speechless and invigorated by the life that spills out from participants after each and every run.
Zoe believes that there is no better way to connect with others than through artistic expression. She has always loved dance as an art form and is so excited to be a part of UNSET2.0 because of that. Zoe is currently studying music performance at the University of Texas. There she has performed with various ensembles including the UT wind ensemble, the UT Symphony Orchestra and the Butler Opera Center.
assistant to the director, technical designer
Christy Casey is a member of the @deepdiveaustin team, comes from a background in dance and movement theater training, and is excited about applying interactive techniques to dance. She is supporting many aspects behind the scenes on UNSET2.0, focusing on the technical elements working with the team creating interactive video projections.
Christian’s favorite dance move is the funky chicken, which is probably why she usually sticks to playing an instrument. She generally plays percussion instruments, but also has experience on keys, saxophone, and violin. She loves creating a new soundtrack for the audience and dancers in every Unset dance. She is one of the founding members of the Good House Collective, a group that plays new classically inspired music in and around Austin. You can learn more about Christian at doublecmusic.com.
Nicolas has flourished as a musician thanks to the collaboration between dancer and musician. Creating counter melodies within the tunes him and his fellow musicians create has become one of his favorite things. Nicolas studies classical bass performance at the University of Texas, he can be seen and heard in the music school's symphony and opera, he also dabbles in jazz bass.
Brian believes that the role of all art - dance music, or visual - is to remind consumers of a shared humanity. UNSET2.0 is remarkable in that it provides new ways to explore and express that shared messy human experience in ways not possible with dance, music, or projection alone. He is a classical guitarist, composer, and computer scientist studying at the University of Texas, and can be found online at www.brianellissound.com.
Ciceley believes dance facilitates an awareness of the body that can be forgotten in everyday life. She is excited about UNSET because it challenges her to relinquish creative control. She is recently with the developmental stages of The experimental play “The Glass Pistol”. She is continuing to work on various projects in the Austin area.
John loves how dance makes him feel alive and that it brings beauty to the world. His favorite part about UNSET2.0 is how it empowers all types of people to move. He’s performed with Diverse Space Dance Theatre, in the premiere of Robi Polgar’s The Tree Play, and in numerous other productions. When not dancing, you’ll find John collaborating on new creative work and eating too many tacos.
Joanna believes the language of movement is innate within each human being. She is excited to tap into the expression of this language with YOU and the ensemble that comprises UNSET2.0! Her artistic compass is guided by her interested in the relationship between performer and audience member and the uniquely live experience, which has led to over a dozen original productions. She is Co-Producing Artistic Director of Live Action Set and is a member of The Interactive Deep Dive. joannaharmon.com
director of therapeutic applciations
Olivia believes that expressive movement is one of the most healing forms of storytelling. She loves that UNSET unlocks the transformative power of dance for anyone and everyone. Olivia lives, works and plays primarily in Austin, TX. To find out more about her explorations in performance, wellness, and experience design, visit www.oliviajimenez.com.
Lily enjoys play, movement, and the unexpected. In college she danced and choreographed in student-productions, and her undergraduate Anthropology thesis / dance piece was selected as an American College Dance Association regional finalist. Lily loves the excitement of live improvisation, and UNSET2.0 feels like a magic trick that the audience helps create.
Amy began her terpsichorean endeavors inspired by her 93 year old Grandfather, William Twain Morrow and his pre-disposition for lauded performers such as Ginger Rodgers, Cyd Charisse, and Rowan Atkinson. Her first choreographic premiere in 1994 was in the Park Trails fields of Fort Worth, TX later remounted in 2010 in the jungles of Kerala, India and a third critically acclaimed one-woman show on a Florentin rooftop in Tel Aviv 2017. She dances to ask "What if" and to move through what she doesn't understand. Join the movement, thetheorists.org.
Kelsey Oliver, an Austin native, is a freelance choreographer and performer in the digs for brutally experimental theatre, film, and concert dance. She has choreographed and/or performed for Frank Wo/Men Collective, Rude Mechanicals, Underbelly Theatre Company, Magdalena Jarkowiec, The Theorists, Body Shift, Capyac, UT New Theatre, Cordova Quartet, + more. Kelsey gets perked by work that inches toward the absurd, cross-breeding multi-fielded and mixed-ability artists' curiosities. This UNSET2.0 experience has been an educational toolbox of adaption, connection, and amplification of other humans; Kelsey is über into that. 4 more: Kelsey-Oliver.com
Isaac a junior in the University of Texas at Austin Dance Education department. He is very happy to be a part of this piece and to work along side and assist with so many talented individuals. It makes him happy that such creative work is being shown in the Austin community.
director of projections
Kevin Reilly is an artist and engineer. Reimagining the potential of new technologies, he works with code, AR, VR, and custom tangible interfaces to craft whimsical works that surprise and delight. Impassioned to enable other artists he works as a conduit for the community by co-organizing the Austin Interactive Installation Meetup, founding vûrv collective, and leading creative workshops.
THRILLS is an Audio/Visual Producer based in Austin, TX whose works are cross-pollinating vagabonds traversing the tech, music, and art space. Her portfolio is a diverse collection of projects in game and installation sound design, motion-interactive projection mapping, music production, and live performance system innovations. THRILLS' most recent work includes her original sound design for an audio-visual LED instrument exhibited at Thinkery, a project developed in tandem with other members of vûrv media arts collective. You can get access to her future genius/vigorously scroll through and casually absorb updates on her upcoming creative A/V experiments on instagram @thisisthrills or follow Thrills Music Productions on Facebook.
UNSET 2.0 photo: Galen Higgins
ensemble photos: Bill Ledbetter, imagelectic.com
design: Joanna Harmon
video: Noah Bremer