Upcoming Performances and Works:
"This is What Space Sounds Like" (December 2012)—In conjunction with the Advanced Choreography class in UC Berkeley’s Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies, The Defiance Project has been exploring and creating a piece called This is What Space Sounds Like about sacredness, ritual, reincarnation, and legacy. In contrast to Sophie Needelman’s typical choreographic process, the emotional themes and through-lines emerged from the form of the movement itself, instead of inspiring the movment in the first place. This piece was approached in a true modernist sense, by addressing the body’s desire to move in a certain way as well as the artistic configurations of various bodies in space that can ensue. The movement generated and trajectory established exposed this burning desire to honor the legacies of the collective and personal unconscious through spiritual embodiment. Through exercises and techniques facilitated by legendary Bay Area choreographer Joe Goode, Sophie has established a movement exploration of honoring past legacies and also making our own current ones. This is What Space Sounds Like is dedicated to Papa Gerry, the man whose legacy Sophie wishes to honor and follow in the footsteps of.
Title TBD: Collaboration with Erin Johnson (December 2012)— The Defiance Project director Sophie Needelman is in collaboration with UC Berkeley Art Practice Graduate Student Erin Johnson on a piece that explores the politics of San Francisco’s LGBT Archive through the metaphor of water. The constructs of the piece involve black trash bags filled with water that are then poked with pins to begin a leaking process. So far, the empty studio space in which this piece has been created ends up flooded with the water from the trash bags- and bags themselves end in depletion. While the “end” of the piece has always been jarring and rather wet, the means to this end are extremely explorative and therefore different each time. By examining this relationship between water, trash bag, dancer, and space, we have been led to discover various truths about containment, agency, pressure, and how the media of the human body, bags, and water change over time.
Past Performances and Works:
"Einstein on the Beach" Flashmob (October 2012)— In honor of the legendary opera Einstein on the Beach, The Defiance Project facilitated a flashmob that took place on UC Berkeley’s Sproul Plaza. Various participants in the flashmob gathered for rehearsals and learned the choreography inspired by Lucinda Childs’ work in Einstein. This piece explored postmodern concepts of dance, musical embodiment, the power of gesture, and the union of pedestrian movement with stylized choreography. In true flashmob form, the Einstein piece was performed spontaneously in UC Berkeley’s most highly populated public place and attracted attention from passersby. Because the flashmob occurred the day of Einstein on the Beach’s dress rehearsal, the performers of the opera were able to participate as audience members which make doing the flashmob an incredible treat. This performance would not have been possible without the support of Rio Vander Stahl and the entire Cal Performances team.
The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s “Game of Life” (September 2012)—The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of San Diego holds an annual gala to raise money for vital research and treatment of Cystic FIbrosis affecting thousands of people a year. This year’s gala was themed “The Game of Life” and honored various scientists and advocates of preventative treatment of Cystic Fibrosis. The Defiance Project was featured in the opening ceremony of the event with choreography and performance by Sophie Needelman. This “Game of Life” piece was a tribute to the everyday heroes combating this disease.
Guest Company at Eveoke Dance Theater’s Annual Fall Open House (August 2012) — Eveoke Dance Theater has provided endless amounts of support for The Defiance Project and we were thrilled to get to perform at the company’s annual open house. Various works were shared with the Eveoke audience as The Defiance Project was featured as an emergence of Eveoke Dance Theater. We would like to thank Ericka Moore for inviting us to share work at our dance home!
Guest Company at Canyon Crest Academy Envision Dance Conservatory’s Fundraiser at The Vine (July 2012)— The Defiance Project was invited to perform with Canyon Crest Academy’s Envision Dance Conservatory at their annual summer fundraiser. CCA’s Dance Conservatory has highly contributed to the training and inspiration behind The Defiance Project’s foundation, and we were honored to be present to contribute the legacy and continuation of this incredible program. We would like to thank Rayna Stohl for including us in this incredible performance.
Guest Company at Mojalet’s Summer Series at the Vine (July 2012)— The Defiance Project performed with Mojalet Dance Collective in their Summer Series at The Vine. We had an amazing time sharing our work with the broader San Diego dance community, and wish to thank Faith Jensen-Ismay for including us in this showcase.
The Defiance Project First Annual Fundraiser: Inter-Exposed (July 2012)— It is with great pride that we debuted The Defiance Project to our community of supporters and fans at our first official fundraising performance. Pieces included works choreographed by Becky Kalinowski and Sophie Needelman. We have taken advantage of various performance opportunities and fundraising events throughout the dance community- as our dance company continued to grow and expand, we hoped to extend our fundraising efforts to our network of support above and beyond the dance community. Funds we raised will be put toward offsetting the cost of future performances, rental of rehearsal space, publicity and marketing materials, and more. Any and every donation makes a difference, and we are honored and grateful for the time you have spent taking to heart our cause of bringing dance to the level of defiance.
Temecula DanceXchange (July 2012)—During the 2012 Summer Season, The Defiance Project expanded beyond San Diego and performed at danceXchange in Temecula. A beautiful evening of performing under the Temecula stars culminated with lots of audience feedback, new contacts, and lots of new works shared amongst performers.
Defiance Project Spring Preview at the Little Italy ArtWalk (April 2012)—The Defiance Project is pleased to have performed in the Little Italy ArtWalk’s Dance on the Edge! This “event within an event” celebrated the dance community in San Diego by offering a full weekend of dance to the already thriving Little Italy ArtWalk community. This is a weekend-long event happened the last weekend in April, and The Defiance Project performed on Sunday, April 29th at 4:30 p.m. We loved having support at this Spring Preview of our season’s work.