In my choreographic work I am interested in expanding what I perceive as possible to feel and express with the body. To transcend the senses, to expand togetherness, to tune attention. To step beyond the limitations we experience, navigating the world in late capitalism.
Chasing and expanding a deep somatic knowledge, in the navigation of improvised structures that ask the performer to move beyond defined shape and form. Sourcing the energetic and the unknown in the body. I privilege the moving body as a malleable and empathetic system; in intuitive dialogue with itself, the other performers, the space and the viewer. Often using structures of repetition and duration to develop systems that expand and contract time. I am interested in exploring affect without being didactic. Creating waves of energy, mesmerizing patterns in space and in the body that breathe with aliveness and vibrancy.
Through my work my hope is to offer experiences that move toward expanded sensation, exploring new paradigms of togetherness and responsiveness between bodies.
Amanda Acorn is an award winning choreographer and teacher based in Toronto, Canada. As a dancer she collaborated as a company artist with Dancemakers from 2011-2015 under the artistic leadership of Michael Trent. Independent engagements include projects with Dana Michel, Brendan Fernandes, Helen Husak, Lady Janitor, Benjamin Kamino, Isabel Lewis, Lemi Ponifasio and Andrea Spaziani.
Her own works are intimate sensorial encounters for the theatre and unconventional spaces, constructing responsive environments using a choreographic frame. Minimally abstract, her choreographies captivate with raw poetry and unwavering rigor. Using the performative event as a place to question ways of seeing, the work offers space to consider our habitual and conditioned assumptions. Her first group work multiform(s) was awarded the Canadian Stage Award for direction at SummerWorks Performance Festival (2015). Her work has been presented across Canada including the Festival TransAmériques in Montréal, the Art Gallery of Ontario, Videofag and Toronto Dance Theatre in Toronto, Workers Arts Heritage Centre in Hamilton, Festival of New Dance in St John’s and Dancer’s Studio West in Calgary to name a few. Her most recent work, a site responsive, immersive performance for 6 dancers and a live DJ, Leisure Palace premiered as part of the In/Future Festival at Ontario Place along Toronto’s waterfront. She was the emerging artist in residence at Dancemakers (2016-2018).
Acorn’s work has been supported through generous residencies at Dancemakers, Hub 14 and Videofag in Toronto, Studio 303 in Montréal, Stone Boat Artist Retreat in rural Ontario and at EarthDance in MA, USA. Upcoming projects include choreography for Four Sisters as part of Susanna Fournier’s Trilogy; The Empire. A passionate pedagogue, she has shared her practice with professionals and young dancers across Canada and teaches Pilates and movement at Toronto’s Misfitstudio.
Photo credit: Talia Shipman