About

About the Company

Laura Peterson Choreography is a New York City based dance company creating work that challenges the limits of physicality and redefines performance spaces.

“My dances are deeply influenced by the visual art of the 1970’s, particularly Earth Art, geometric paintings and installation as well as the minimalists of the 1960’s in Europe and America. Since 2007, my work has included built-in performance environments that transform the space and are developed simultaneously with the choreography. When I create dances I begin with improvisation and dive deeply into the process of physicalizing my ideas, and as I craft the work I frequently employ repetition, iteration, and mathematical patterns as a means of expanding my concepts. These techniques developed in the work of minimalist artists and composers in the 20th century have been part of my research regarding form and serve as a point of departure from which I consider visual and compositional possibilities. Each dance is an environment, a concept, a performance, highly refined and rigorously researched.”

-Laura Peterson, 2016


Laura Peterson, Artistic Director

Laura Peterson is a NYC-based dance artist and Artistic Director of Laura Peterson Choreography. The company has had residencies and commissions at the HERE Arts Center, Temple University, Queens Museum of Art, Dance New Amsterdam, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s Swing Space and received two Mondo Cane! Commissions at Dixon Place. Her work, Forever was recently performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC. Laura is a recipient of a choreographic fellowship from the Bogliasco Foundation in Italy to create her work “The Futurist” in November and December of 2014.

Laura’s dances have been presented in NYC at venues including Dance Theater Workshop (family matters and dancenowNYC), PS 122, Danspace Project (draftworks), Symphony Space and many others. Laura’s choreography has been produced internationally in Argentina, Germany, Poland and throughout the US. Laura’s piece Everyone, a dance for 28 performers in two locations, was created for Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s (LMCC) Sitelines 2010. Her work has been performed at Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival Inside/Out, Philadelphia’s NEW Festival, Goose Route Dance Festival and the International Contemporary Dance Festival in Bytom, Poland. Laura has been commissioned by Pennsylvania Ballet, Hartford Ballet, DROP Dance in Boise, ID. and has made dances for Princeton University, Hunter College, NYU’s Tisch Dance Department and Lehman College.

Laura Peterson has received support from the Greenwall Foundation, Brooklyn Arts Council, the Bossak/Heilbron Charitable Foundation, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, the Puffin Foundation, and a Pennsylvania Arts Council Choreography Fellowship. She was a member of the HERE Artist-in-Residence Program (HARP) for the development of her work Wooden which premiered in 2011 in New York City.

Her performance credits include Julie Taymor’s film, Across The Universe, choreographed by Daniel Ezralow. She has performed with Poppo & the GoGo Boys, Risa Jaroslow & Dancers, Paule Turner’s court (Philadelphia), Group Motion Dance Co  (Philadelphia), Asimina Chremos (Chicago, Philadelphia), Eun Jung Choi (NYC), and many others.

Laura has taught dance technique, improvisation and composition at Princeton University, Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, Marymount Manhattan, CUNY Lehman College, Rowan University and Western Connecticut State University. She is a returning faculty member at the Balance Dance Company, a pre-professional dance company in Boise, Idaho. Laura has taught dance in NYC at Mark Morris Dance Center, Dance New Amsterdam and 100 Grand.

Laura holds an MFA in Dance from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts where she received a Fellowship in Dance History and a BFA with honors in Modern Dance from University of the Arts in Philadelphia.

Awards by Year

2016 Marble House Project Residency for “Solo”

2014 Bogliasco Foundation Fellowship to research and create “The Futurist” at the Liguria Study Center in Bogliasco, Italy.

2012 Reflection Response Commission for Failure at Conwell Dance Theater, Temple University

2009-2011 HERE Artist Residency Program (HARP) and commission for Wooden

2010 Commission for Everyone from Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Sitelines Series

2010 Trust for Mutual Understanding grant to support the tour of Wooden and Forever in Poland

2009-2011 Artistic Residencies at Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s Swing Space at 14 Wall Street and Governors Island

2009, 2010 Greenwall Foundation Grants

2009 Topaz Arts/ Queens Museum of Art Artist-in-Residence

 2008 Brooklyn Arts Council Artist Grant

2007-2008 Dance New Amsterdam Artist-in-Residence

2007, 2009 Mondo Cane! Commission Dixon Place (I Love Dan Flavin, Forever)

2008 Bossak/Heilbron Charitable Foundation Individual Artist Grant

2007 Puffin Foundation Ltd. Grant

 

COMPANY BIOGRAPHIES


Jon Pope (Co-Installation Designer and Technical Director) has worked in collaboration with Laura Peterson Choreography creating performance environments and directing installations for the last 10 years. He is a NYC Licensed Contractor building and renovating residential and commercial spaces. Jon is a LEED Accredited Professional and a DSNY Certified Master Composter. For the last 4 years Jon has worked with Public Works Collaborative with whom he has created public art in NYC, and built a permanent sound installation in Lexington, Kentucky. He is a graduate of SUNY College of Environment Science and Forestry at Syracuse University, and was a fisheries biologist for the State of Alaska for four years. In 2013, Jon was a contributing author to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s publication Easy Compost. Jon plays bass and writes music with his bands Commonweath Revival and Poor Colin.

 


Jennifer Syrdor and Darrin Wright duet in FailureJennifer Sydor  described as “dazzling” by The Boston Globe and “remarkable for her intense focus and vivid dramatic skill” by The New York Times is thrilled to be working with Laura Peterson Choreography. She holds a BFA in Dance Performance from Butler University.  In NYC, Jennifer has worked with choreographers such as Vanessa Walters, Jill Sigman, Stefanie Nelson, Nia Love, Janice Lancaster, Sharon Moore, Ben Asriel and Janessa Clark.  She has toured internationally to 12 different countries as a dancer with the avant-garde performance troupe and electro pop band Fischerspooner, in collaboration with the experimental theater company, The Wooster Group.  She has performed in Doug Elkins’ Bessie Award winning Fraulein Maria, as well as a featured performer in David Parker and The Bang Group’s Nut/Cracked, for five seasons.  Jennifer was a guest artist with the Dayton Ballet’s 75th Anniversary season, featured as the Fairy Godmother in Cinderella.  Most recently she danced the role of the bird in Peter and The Wolf, directed by Isaac Mizrahi with choreography by John Heginbotham at The Guggenheim Museum.  Jennifer is also in her sixth season as a guest dancer with The Metropolitan Opera where she has worked with Tony Award winning directors such as Mary Zimmerman, Michael Grandage and Bartlett Sher.  She has appeared in The Metropolitan Opera’s Live in HD broadcasts worldwide, and on PBS’s Great Performances in the operas Manon, Don Giovanni, Armida and  La Sonnambula.


Darrin Wright (Dancer), a Brooklyn-based artist, is a native of Los Angeles, California where he started tap dancing at the age of six. His early trainings were taking tap classes, which led into jazz with Ian Gary; learning about choreography and performance in high school with Janet Roston; taking post-modern dance with Rudy Perez. In 1997, Darrin joined The Bella Lewitzky Dance Company as part of its farewell tour. He received his BFA in Dance from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in 2002. Since graduation, Darrin has had the pleasure of working with The METopera, Susan Marshall, Terry Creach, Jane Comfort, Bill Young/Colleen Thomas, Yanira Castro, Jack Ferver, Tami Stronach, Antonio Ramos, Leslie Cuyjet, Doug Varone, Laura Peterson, Amber Sloan, Nancy Bannon, Linsey Bostwick, Nina Winthrop, Linsday and Jason Dietz Marchant. Darrin teaches master classes in technique, composition and improvisation throughout the country. In 2009, he received a Bessie Award for his work with A Canary Torsi’ Dark Horse/Black Forest.  .


 

Kate Martel (rehearsal director. company 2007-2017) grew up in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Currently based in Brooklyn, NY, she has danced in NYC since 2002. A member of Laura Peterson Choreography since 2007, Kate has also performed dances by Luis Lara Malvacias, Juliette Mapp, David Hurwith, Sarah White-Ayon and Nora Stephens. Abandoned classrooms, rooftops, blackbox theaters, churches and lofts have been homes to her choreographic experiments (St. Cecilia’s, Rooftop Dance, Dixon Place, Women in Motion and Movement Research at Judson Church). She has taught nationally, internationally and is on faculty at Western Connecticut State University. Kate earned her BA in Dance from Goucher College and  an MFA at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She is also participating in the Alexander Technique Teacher Training Course at Balance Arts Center. This year she joined dance artists Sarah Weber Gallo and Whitney Jacobs in forming a collaborative trio, Pigeon Congress, which taught and performed at ACDF in Spring 2014. In May, her new work Absolute Construction premiered at Center for Performance Research.


Ayumu Poe Saegusa (Lighting Designer) started his professional career in 2000 in Tokyo, Japan. He moved into NYC in 2005 and became the resident lighting designer of HERE in SoHo. From 2006-2016 Poe has worked as a designer for the annual CultureMart Festival at HERE Arts Center. He also works as a freelance lighting designer for various shows from NY Fringe Festival to Lincoln Center. His credits include Skriker(William College 2016, MA) by Kameron Steel and Rite of Spring (ROSE THEATER Jazz At Lincoln Center 2014, NY) by Basil Twist. Philharmonic Orchestra New York Season 2016 &2017 (Lincoln Center ROSE THEATER). He has toured throughout the US, Europe and South America with shows he designed. He also works as a lighting coordinator between USA and Japan for the Japan Society, NHK (Japan Broadcast Corporation), FCI and many other clients with international projects. In 2017, he founded “CMsl” (www.creativemachien.lighting).


 

WORKSHOPS AND CLASSES

Classes are offered for any guest artist or touring engagement.

Laura has taught dance and created repertory at universities in the US including Princeton, Marymount Manhattan, Hunter College, Old Dominion, SUNY Brockport, NYU’s Tisch Dance Department and others. She currently teaches dance at Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, in studios throughout NYC, and in festivals in the US and internationally.

An intermediate workshop offered for universities and festivals:
Continuous Dancing:

This workshop is highly physical and blends full-bodied and dynamic movement with elements of improvisation to create a sense of continuity, athleticism and detailed dancing. 
We begin with focusing exercises designed to support the experience of looking closely at the space around us as we simultaneously bring awareness to the body’s internal systems and small continuous movements that connect the outside with the inside. With this awakened state the dancing becomes fuller as we both find clarity in the body through contemporary dance technique and work toward an understanding of how these elements relate to the concepts that are at the heart of Laura’s choreographic process and the resulting dancing.

Company Biographies

Kate arch cropped

Kate Martel (Performer) grew up in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Currently based in Brooklyn, NY, she has danced in NYC since 2002. A member of Laura Peterson Choreography since 2007, Kate has also performed dances by Luis Lara Malvacias, Juliette Mapp, David Hurwith, Sarah White-Ayon and Nora Stephens. Abandoned classrooms, rooftops, blackbox theaters, churches and lofts have been homes to her choreographic experiments (St. Cecilia’s, Rooftop Dance, Dixon Place, Women in Motion and Movement Research at Judson Church). She has taught nationally, internationally and is on faculty at Western Connecticut State University. Kate earned her BA in Dance from Goucher College and completed her MFA at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She is also participating in the Alexander Technique Teacher Training Course at Balance Arts Center. This year she joined dance artists Sarah Weber Gallo and Whitney Jacobs in forming a collaborative trio, Pigeon Congress, who has taught and performed at ACDF in Spring 2014. In May, her new work Absolute Construction was presented at Center for Performance Research.


jennifer sydorJennifer Sydor has been described as “dazzling” by The Boston Globe and “remarkable for her intense focus and vivid dramatic skill” by The New York Times is thrilled to be working with Laura Peterson Choreography. She holds a BFA in Dance Performance from Butler University.  In NYC, Jennifer has worked with choreographers such as Vanessa Walters, Jill Sigman, Stefanie Nelson, Nia Love, Janice Lancaster, Sharon Moore, Ben Asriel and Janessa Clark.  She has toured internationally to 12 different countries as a dancer with the avant-garde performance troupe and electro pop band Fischerspooner, in collaboration with the experimental theater company, The Wooster Group.  She has performed in Doug Elkins’ Bessie Award winning Fraulein Maria, as well as a featured performer in David Parker and The Bang Group’s Nut/Cracked, for five seasons.  Jennifer was a guest artist with the Dayton Ballet’s 75th Anniversary season, featured as the Fairy Godmother in Cinderella.  Most recently she danced the role of the bird in Peter and The Wolf, directed by Isaac Mizrahi with choreography by John Heginbotham at The Guggenheim Museum.  Jennifer is also in her sixth season as a guest dancer with The Metropolitan Opera where she has worked with Tony Award winning directors such as Mary Zimmerman, Michael Grandage and Bartlett Sher.  She has appeared in The Metropolitan Opera’s Live in HD broadcasts worldwide, and on PBS’s Great Performances in the operas Manon, Don Giovanni, Armida and La Sonnambula.

Michael Ingle began dancing at the University of Kansas while earning his BFA in Art History. Since moving to New York City in 2007, he has performed with Hilary Easton + Company, Tere O’Connor Dance, Laura Peterson Choreography, Deganit Shemy & Company, Megan Sprenger/mvworks, Makiko Tamura/small apple co. and Christopher Williams Dances, among others. He is a freelance lighting designer and stage-manager. Michael’s work has been presented at in Brooklyn at One Arm Red, Rooftop Dance, and Triskelion Arts and at Movement Research at Dance Theater Workshop and The Tank Theater in New York City.

 


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Jon Pope (Production Manager) is a builder and contractor in NYC. He has made sets for choreographer Asimina Chremos (Chicago) and Laura Peterson Choreography (NYC). Jon was Head of Construction for the Music Garage in Brooklyn and Chicago for 10 years an oversaw all aspects of building both the Music Garage facilities. Jon is a graduate of SUNY College of Environment Science and Forestry at Syracuse University and was a fisheries biologist for the State of Alaska for four years. Jon is actively involved in the community garden movement in Brooklyn, NY. He was the coordinator of the Prospect Heights Community Farm from 2010-2012, and is a DSNY Certified Master Composter and a LEED Accredited Professional.


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GUEST ARTIST in 2009 and 2010

Luke Gutgsell is a Brooklyn based dance artist.  He earned his BFA from the Ohio State University.   Luke also attended the Naropa Institute.  In 2005 he trained on scholarship at the Merce Cunningham Dance Studio.  He has apprenticed and performed with the Bill T. Jones Dance Company and Shen Wei Dance Arts.  In addition, he has had the great pleasure of dancing with such artist as David Dorfman, Meredith Monk, JoAnna Mendl Shaw, Jody Oberfelder, Christopher Williams, Tiffany Mills,  Risa Jaroslow and Chris Elam.  His dances have been produced in New York City by Dixon Place, Danspace Project, LaMama Theater and the West End Theater.  This summer his newest choreography will be performed by DaDa Dance Company in Merida, Mexico at the Festival Internacional Danza Avant Gard.