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Airborne Festival

Sep 15 Through Sep 16 | Sat |
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· 1 Aerial Dance Mentor · 7 Artistic Seeds · 2 Performances Fly-by-Night Dance Theater Announces The Airborne Festival – Honoring the Legacy of Robert Davidson

Robert Davidson introduced expressive Aerial Dance to hundreds of artists in his lifetime. Fly-by-Night Dance will honor his legacy by featuring performances by Guest Aerial Artists from around the country who were deeply influenced by him.

PERFORMANCE VENUE AND DATES: Manhattan Movement Arts Center 248 West 60th Street, New York, NY 10023 Saturday, September 15 @ 8:00 PM Sunday, September 16 @ 2:30 PM

Tickets: $25 (advance) ? $35 (at the door) ? (877) 987-6487

Guest Aerial artists include: Jayne Bernasconi Anne Bunker / O-T-O Dance Nathan Dryden Melissa Noble Nancy Smith, Frequent Flyers® Aerial Dance Eileen Little & Dan Loeser / Fight or Flight Theater Also Featuring: Fly-by-Night performers: Janet Aisawa, Elise Knudson, Julie Ludwick, Martin Borromeo Live Music by Paul Uhry Newman

Featured Artists: Robert Davidson’s dancing will be featured in the festival through films of his performances. Davidson was a master teacher, musician, aerial dance performer and choreographer and was the Head of Movement at the National Theatre Conservatory in Denver from 1997-2012. Prior to that he was director of his own aerial dance company, touring nationally and internationally, and received numerous grants and creative fellowships. Throughout his career he collaborated with many diverse theatre directors and acting teachers on hundreds of classical and experimental projects. His expertise was in teaching Skinner Releasing Technique, movement improvisation, and aerial dance on low-flying trapezes. A member of Who’s Who for life, he died, suddenly, in December of 2016.

Anne Bunker, Artistic Director of O-T-O Dance, collaborates with artists of national and international acclaim in creating new performances for both traditional and non-traditional performance spaces. Her professional experience includes the Cleo-Parker-Robinson Dance Ensemble, Heights Dance Company, Pilobolus Dance Theatre and Bill T. Jones. Choreography and Company touring engagements encompass performances throughout the United States, Mexico, the U.K., Italy, Switzerland, Russia, and South and Central America. Anne’s first major award was a year-long fellowship in from the Rocky Mountain Women's Institute. In 1981, she founded and directed Anne Bunker and Dancers in Milan, Italy and since then has created over 90 choreographic works. Bunker has been awarded choreographer fellowships from the Tucson Pima Arts Council, an Artist Project Grant from The Arizona Commission on the Arts, and a choreography award from The Arizona Commission on the Arts. In 2005, she was awarded the prestigious Artist Award from the Community Foundation of Southern Arizona and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Tucson Pima Arts Council. Bunker taught and performed for the Festival Internacional de las Artes in San Jose Costa Rica and received an award from Americans For the Arts which included traveling to Northern Ireland to teach and perform with the Dungannon Disability Arts Studio. Recent teaching and performing engagements have included tours to St Petersburg, Russia, Quito, Guyaquil and Manta Ecuador with support from the US Embassy. She was also a guest artist at the Cranbrook Schools in Michigan and created TURRJURKUPA with Australian didgeridoo master and videographer, Ash Dargan. With her husband and longtime collaborator, Chuck Koesters, she completed their newest work, Hawaiian Suite which premiered in Quito, Ecuador at the 5th Annual Festival Mujeres en la Danza.

Nancy Smith has been the founder and artistic director of Frequent Flyers® Aerial Dance since its inception in 1988 and the Aerial Dance Festival since 1999. She teaches Aerial Release Technique (A.R.T.) around the US. Her work with Frequent Flyers has been seen in Boston, California, Louisiana, Virginia, Montreal, the Bahamas, throughout Colorado, and most recently at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC. Nancy has received numerous awards including “Living Legend of Dance in Colorado,” “Women Who Light the Community”, “Cutting Edge” Award, the “Pacesetters Award” for Arts and Entertainment, a Neodata Endowment Fellowship in Dance, and the “Arts Innovation Award”. She also is an instructor at Univ. of Colorado’s Dance Dept. spreading the gospel of Aerial Dance. Along with co-author, Jayne Bernasconi, she wrote the first book on the history / theory of Aerial Dance, as well as, the introduction to Terry Sendgraff’s soon to be released memoir.

Jayne Bernasconi began her professional career dancing and training in NYC with various modern dance companies and icons including Alwin Nikolais, Murray Louis, David Gordon, Stephen Petronio and Pooh Kaye. In 1990, she relocated to VT and founded Forces of Ability (for adults) and Artsability (for children) with mixed ability populations, receiving support from the National Endowment For The Arts. She also danced with Bill T. Jones’: The Last Supper At Uncle Tom’s Cabin. From 1995-1999 she relocated again to Boulder, CO and danced with Frequent Flyers Productions, where she worked with aerial pioneers Nancy Smith, Terry Sendgraff and Robert Davidson. She has taught and participated in the international Aerial Dance Festival since its inception in 1999. She is the co-author of the book/DVD “Aerial Dance” with Nancy Smith (c. 2008, Human Kinetics) which track the roots of the movers and shakers that laid the foundation of aerial dance in the post-modern dance world. Bernasconi is the inventor of aerial yoga where she developed and introduced the first class on a single point double bar trapeze in 2003 at the Aerial Dance Festival (Boulder). She also pioneered mixed ability aerial dance from her many years of creating dance on people with mixed abilities. Nathan Dryden is a movement artist, teacher, and performer with a MFA in Dance and Choreography from the University of Utah. His work crosses through the fields of contemporary dance, improvisation, theatre, and aerial-dance. In October 2017 Dryden was featured in, We Rise and Fall Together, a TEDx Talk in Salt Lake City a production he put together. Dryden is on faculty as an Open Source Forms teacher trainer and is a certified instructor of the Skinner Releasing Technique at the Introductory and Ongoing levels. He has taught as a guest artist at various universities across the U.S.A. and internationally – including workshops in Turkey, New Zealand, Canada, and England. He is a regular guest artist at the Juniata College Theatre Department teaching, mentoring, and creating/directing works including: And They Lay…Dreaming, Charles Mee’s Big Love, and most recently Samuel Beckett Circus with Kate Clarke. Julie Ludwick has created dozens of works for Fly-by-Night Dance and her work with theater includes Mapou Productions How Papa Noel Forgot Haiti at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall starring Danny Glover and The Circus Show at the University of Missouri’s Graduate School for Theater. She is a master teacher, choreographer, dancer, and scholar. Her Aerial Dance classes have been featured in Paper Magazine, Time Out NY and in a documentary from AfterEd TV, as an outstanding alum of Teachers College, Columbia University and is a certified teacher of Skinner Releasing Technique. As Artistic Director of Fly-by-Night Dance she has produced 7 Aerial Dance Festivals in New York City, 8 Free-for-Kids Projects, and 13 seasons of her own repertory. Her projects have received support from The Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, The Puffin Foundation, The Frances Alexander Family Fund, The Cartwheel Foundation, the Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance (NOMAA), JP Morgan Chase, Fleet Bank, Dance Theater Workshop, and The New York City Council. Her choreography has been produced at numerous venues including The Flea Theater, PS 122, Dixon Place, Dance Theater Workshop, The Kitchen, and Mabou Mines Theater. Fly-by-Night Dance believes it is vital to open up opportunities for artists of color and each year they hold a scholarship audition for dancers of color to study Aerial Dance with the company. Eileen Little and Dan Loeser / Fight or Flight have been creating exciting and original aerial theatre for 10 years. The company was formed in Brooklyn in 2008 by MFA graduates Eileen Little & John Behlmann as an outlet for continuing the trapeze teachings of Bob Davidson, Head of Movement, National Theatre Conservatory. Specializing in original works and adaptations, Fight or Flight has had productions Off-Broadway (Shakespeare’s Richard II / co-production with Sonnet Rep, Trapeze Hero! / ArsNova ANTFest, This is Not J.A.W.S. / Dixon Place) Regionally (Shakespeare’s Henry V at Burning Coal Theatre, Raleigh, NC, Winner of 2011 Triangle Arts Best Play, Best Director, Best Lead/s, Best Ensemble) and countless workshops, exhibitions, and educational performances across the country. Melissa Noble was a touring member of the Robert Davidson Dance Company from 1994-1999 and was part of the development of Rapture Rumi work that debuted at On The Boards in Seattle, WA. She then began a tour with Aero-Betty of Portland, OR, which included the Macy’s Passport shows in San Francisco and Los Angeles and were broadcast on national TV. Her ongoing exploration of Aerial Dance and Movement Theatre has led her to collaborate with Avant Garde theatre companies such as Circus Contraption, the Pacific Performance Project, The Cabiri and choreograph for Winfall Dance Company in Bloomington, IN as well as several works for ARC Dance Company in Seattle, WA including the world premiere of her aerial dance piece Beyond Flight at Meany Hall at the University of Washington. She has taught singers at the Jacob’s School of Music and the Houston Grand Opera Studio and has choreographed for many operas, including the Kaneko Project of Madame Butterfly, Madison Opera, Opera Omaha, Opera North Carolina, and San Francisco Opera. Melissa has been faculty at the University of Washington, Indiana University and as an Artist in Residence at Juniata College and currently teaches at University of Houston. She and her husband, Adam Noble, are co-directors of Dynamic Presence Project and have mounted original works at On The Boards, Seattle and Indianapolis Fringe Festival. Melissa is an MFA candidate in the Interdisciplinary Practice and Emerging Forms program at University of Houston School of Art and most recently has completed an Artist Residency in Marfa,TX.

Venue: Manhattan Movement and Arts Center

248 West 60 Street Map