Deborah Hay is an internationally renowned choreographer whose unique approach to movement forever changed how the world makes and views dance. Hay is recognized as a pivotal figure in the development of post-modern dance and her work as a founding member of the iconic 1960s Judson Dance Theatre in New York, one of the most radical and influential post-modern art movements is legendary.
Based in Austin since 1976, Hay recently established her archive at the Harry Ransom Center, a major destination for the study of dance, theatre, and film at UT Austin. She continues to create new work and evolve her practice at 80 years old. When pandemic-induced closures made the debut of her latest work with renowned Swedish contemporary dance company Cullberg impossible, Hay shifted gears. A series of solos were captured on video from the stage of Texas Performing Arts’ McCullough Theatre to allow the artistic dialog to continue. The resulting work, Horse, the solos, is a meditation on the climate crisis and modern survival, with new music by Austin-based composer Graham Reynolds. “Horse, the solos is choreographed in a manner that relies on an intuitive understanding of risk, efficiency, and survival. There is control in efficiency but not risk-taking. Combined they establish the conditions for [the work],” says Hay. For its U.S. premiere, Graham Reynolds will perform the music live for the first time. The program will open with a rare solo performance by Deborah Hay. A performance of Hay’s 2004 masterpiece The Match will kick off a day of performance, discussion, and film screenings. This iconic work contains meditation-like exercises that invisibly bind the dancers to the material by establishing a mental, emotional, and bodily rigor visible in the performance. Time Out, New York proclaimed “The Match is a fascinating, vibrant battle of wits that unfolds through a silent score of movement.”
FULL SCHEDULE OF ACTIVITIES
Pre-performance conversation: Deborah Hay with Kirk Lynn (Associate Professor, Playwriting And Directing - UT Austin Theatre & Dance)
The Match (55 minute run time)
Post-performance discussion with Deborah Hay and Cullberg company members moderated by Leah Cox (Associate Professor, Dance - UT Austin Theatre & Dance)
Film screening - Dear Dancer (2022) by Marcus Lindeen (25 minute run time)
my choreographed body…revisited
Horse, the solos (U.S. premiere)
featuring live music by Graham Reynolds
Post-performance discussion moderated by Leah Cox (Associate Professor, Dance - UT Austin Theatre & Dance)
Performances of Ms. Hay’s solos, which have the potential to turn a dancer inside-out — a wondrous thing — are best experienced live.
– New York Times
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