Molly Lieber and Eleanor Smith
Residency dates: March 3-15
Public Showing: March 15, 8pm
at The Chain Theatre 21-28 45th Rd, Long Island City in Queens
Molly Lieber and Eleanor Smith make collaborative duet work using a movement process deeply rooted in improvisation. The imaginative texture of the work comes from the duet making truly collaborative decisions; emitting tension and pliability from the interplay of two different minds. A tone of loneliness pervades their work through employing a sparse, intimate, and feminine environment of two bodies in space.
Choreographers: Molly Lieber and Eleanor Smith
Sound Design: James Lo
“Alone, Molly Lieber or Eleanor Smith is powerful; together they’re shattering.” – Martha Sherman, Dance View Times
Video Interview coming soon!
Molly Lieber and Eleanor Smith have been collaborating since 2006. They produced their first show in 2008 at Triskelion Arts. In 2009, their first evening length work, Blanket, was presented at The Tank. In March of 2012 they premiered Beautiful Bone at The Chocolate Factory Theater, to critical acclaim. An excerpt of Tulip, the pair’s newest work, was commissioned in 2012 through the Judson Now Platform at Danspace Project, and will premiere at Roulette this June. Molly and Eleanor have also been presented by CATCH, Dixon Place, Fridays at Noon at 92Y, LaMaMa, Movement Research at Judson Church, Performance Mix, and Rooftop Dance. The pair’s latest work, Tulip, was nominated for a New York Dance and Performance (BESSIE) Award.
Molly Lieber grew up in Pittsburgh and graduated from Connecticut College. She is working on upcoming projects with Juliette Mapp, Anna Sperber, Melinda Ring, and Levi Gonzalez. She recently performed in works by Keely Garfield, Katie Workum, Jen Rosenblit, and Vanessa Anspaugh. Molly was a guest artist at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania this fall and at the East Village Dance Project last year. She previously tutored and taught dance to high school students at the the Harlem Children’s Zone, and was a ninth grade special education teacher at P371K in Brooklyn.
Eleanor Smith grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina and graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University. She performed with Juliana F. May/MAYDANCE for five years and currently dances for Vanessa Anspaugh, Ivy Baldwin Dance, Levi Gonzalez, Molly Poerstel, and Katie Workum. Eleanor was a 2010 Fresh Tracks recipient at Dance Theater Workshop and had the pleasure of serving on the panel the following year. In 2012 she was a New York Live Arts Studio Series Artist.
James Lo is a composer, sound designer, drummer, and engineer who lives in New York City. His work has been heard in performances throughout the United States, Europe and Japan, in contexts ranging from music concerts, dance concerts, art galleries, clubs, and film. As a composer, he has created scores for choreographers Molly Lieber/Eleanor Smith, Sarah Michelson, Heather Olson, Maria Hassabi, Jennifer Monson, Levi Gonzalez, Ralph Lemon, RoseAnne Spradlin, and Lucy Guerin. He received New York Dance and Performance (BESSIE) Awards for John Jasperse’s furnished/unfurnished and for Donna Uchizono’s State of Heads, and was named one of Treblezine.com’s 50 favorite drummers for his work with the bands Chavez and Live Skull. His electronic and software designs have been used in works by Robert Ashley, Ben Neill, Elizabeth Streb, and David Behrman. As a drummer, he can be heard on recordings by Rhys Chatham, V.A.S.T., Baby Dee, Dax Riggs, Fast Forward, and The Swans.
“Each piece that we make is a choreographic collaboration between the two of us and we are always the only performers. The texture of the work comes from making decisions together; it emits a tension and pliability that results from being extracted and configured between two different minds. Expressing the imaginative realm through movement is our performative challenge, and is supported by the camaraderie and charge of the duet practice we have established. Meanwhile, a tone of loneliness pervades our work. We perform in a sparse, intimate, and feminine environment of just our two bodies.
Our process of making dances begins with, and is sustained by, improvisation. We have been improvising together for the last six years. We find moments we value when improvising, cultivate these moments into performative expressions, and then (try to) perform them. Our performances therefore express ideas that were originally understood through movement. They are at once highly imaginative, and simply about being with one another while considering an audience.” – Molly Lieber and Eleanor Smith
RAMP is PS122’s new residency program designed to support early-career New York City-based artists by offering a place and space to create ambitious new work. RAMP is a unique residency program which not only provides space but also invaluable technical assistance, commissioning fees and marketing support.
RAMP artists are commissioned by Performance Space 122 with support from a 50th Anniversary Grant from the Jerome Foundation. Additional presentation support provided by Mertz Gilmore Foundation, Harkness Foundation for Dance and Jerome Robbins Foundation.