Photo Ian Douglas
Photo Ian Douglas
NYC-based choreographer, educator, writer Kimberly Bartosik creates viscerally provocative choreographic projects that dramatically illuminate the ephemeral nature of performance while critically, tenderly, and violently etching away at deeply distressing threads of our society.
Bartosik is a 2020 Bessie Honoree for Outstanding Production for through the mirror of their eyes. She is a 2021 recipient of the Doris Duke Foundation Performing Artist Recovery Fund in the New York Community Trust; a 2019 Guggenheim Fellow; and a 2020-21 Toulmin Women Leaders in Dance Fellow at Center for Ballet and the Arts at NYU where she is creating The Encounter, an intergenerational project for professionals and pre-professionals. In NYC her work has been commissioned by BAM Next Wave, New York Live Arts, LUMBERYARD Center for Film & Performing Arts, American Realness, FIAF’s Crossing the Line Festival, Abrons Art Center, Gibney, Danspace Project, The Kitchen, and others. Bartosik has toured to Bratislava in Movement (2021), Supersense: Festival of the Ecstatic (Melbourne, Australia), Wexner Arts Center, Dance Place, American Dance Festival, The Yard, MASS MoCA/Jacob’s Pillow, The Flynn, Bates Dance Festival, Columbia College, Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center, Festival Rencontres Chorégraphique Internationales de Seine-Saint Denis, Artdanthe Festival, and others.
Bartosik has received support from the National Dance Project (NDP) Production & Touring Grant and Community Engagement Fund awards; MAP Fund; Jerome Foundation; FUSED (French-US Exchange in Dance); USArtists International; American Dance Abroad; Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Grants to Artists and Emergency Grants, and others.
Bartosik was a member of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company for 9 years and received a Bessie Award for Exceptional Artistry in his work. She continues to work with the Trust to develop innovative educational programs for youth. Her critical writing on issues in the performance industry have been featured in Dance Magazine and publications around the world. www.daela.org
Choreographed by: Kimberly Bartosik
Directed by: Kimberly Bartosik
Music: Sivan Jacobovitz
Dramaturgy: Melanie George
Lighting Design: Roderick Murray
Set Design: Roderick Murray
Costumes: Quinn Czejkowski v spolupráci s Kimberly a účinkujúcimi
Performed by: Dylan Crossman, Burr Johnson, Joanna Kotze
Rehearsal Assistant: River Bartosik-Murray
With young performers: Hunter Liss, Natália Frajkorová / Veronika Janíčková, Hana Luknárová / Kristína Ožváthová
Viscerally provocative, ferociously intimate, and pulsing with unbridled energy, through the mirror of their eyes (2020 Bessie Honoree, Outstanding Production) brims with compassion and violence. With wild and tender abandon, the exceptional performers – Joanna Kotze, Dylan Crossman and Burr Johnson (Bessie Honoree, Outstanding Performer)- fly through the space, garnering the energy of a storm, trying to defy gravity, to stay afloat, to find a pathway through a space drenched with light and sound. Caught in the wake of this experience, a caravan of children appears. They deftly navigate the tempest and ultimately lead the way. In through the mirror of their eyes, the performer’s body is a vessel through which we, as audience, can experience ourselves and the world. The piece captures the chaos of the world, the ways we navigate pathways of destruction and renewal, and gently proposes a path forward.
Director’s note: “I created through the mirror of their eyes from the remnants of my 2018 piece, I hunger for you (BAM Next Wave). Building from that work’s momentum, and its 7-city tour, our continued research allowed me to deepen my interest in working with diverse populations onstage alongside my trained dancers. through the mirror of their eyes features three children performing with a trio of professional dancers. The piece also includes a “crowd” scene, where the young performers, ages 9-13, invite pre-selected audience members onstage to run with the cast. During our recent premiere, this has been an incredibly powerful moment in the work, where our audiences (participants and not) have commented on the feeling of hope and possibility that this act of shared running produces.
I cannot imagine a more potent moment to insist on the importance of artistic exchange than the current one defined by the pandemic that is ravaging our world. As we endure periods of isolation without an endpoint, we need to imagine spaces where we will, once again, be able to commune, to feel together, to hope together. Our audience’s response to through the mirror of their eyes has assured me that the work is essential to share. It is universal in its insistence on moving forward, on creating a collective energy to forge ahead, to carve a new path, to take each other’s hand, and run.
Our tour plan is to cast 2 of the 3 young performers with youth from our tour communities. In each venue, the presenter will identify 2 young people who will be integrated into the piece over the course of 1-2 days. It is essential that Dahlia (14 yr old cast member) lead this transmission. The importance of what a young person holds in their body, and that their body is the vessel for non-verbal communication, is a driving concept for the work. It’s not only about learning steps but understanding, through this young body, the concept of direction (we go this way). It cannot be described or taught. It needs to be felt and shared through her. What better way to begin to dissolve the life-saving borders that we have had to construct than to present a work that needs an audience to exist. A work that requires that we work with children in the community, and that the community joins us onstage. Our bodies will be in conversation.
through the mirror of their eyes was commissioned and presented by New York Live Arts as part of Live Arts Live Feed Residency Program, where it premiered March 4-7, 2020. Additional support includes awards from the MAP Fund; a Guggenheim Fellowship; Harkness Artist-in-Residence grant @ 92nd St. Y; the Creative Arts Initiative; a Mount Tremper Arts Residency; and an EtM/Exploring The Metropolis Choreographer/Composer Grant.