Our second conversation was with:
Katrina McPherson & Kirstie Simson | Fri 18 Dec 2020 | 20.00
Kirstie Simson and Katrina McPherson first became friends and worked together through making the dance documentary Force of Nature (2012), which Katrina filmed over 5 years, and which focusses on the philosophical underpinning of Kirstie’s improvised dance practice. In the process, they discovered many shared physical, philosophical and pedagogical perspectives. Now embarking on a new chapter of their creative collaboration, and amidst this most extraordinary of times, Kirstie and Katrina will open up their on-going discussion about what they feel they can offer, as elders, in terms of fresh perspectives and guiding hope, based on their understanding of how we got here, and where we might go.
Katrina McPherson is an award-winning director and screendance artist whose creative, scholarly and educational work is at the forefront of the international field. Over the 30 years that she has been making work, Katrina has collaborated with numerous international dance artists including Sang Jijia (China/Tibet), Crystal Pite (Canada), Marc Brew (UK/US), Harold Rheaume (Quebec) and Kirstie Simson (UK/US). Since the early 1990’s, Katrina has been regularly awarded funding from public and private organisations, institutions and arts councils and received the prestigious Creative Scotland Award of £25,000 for an individual artist in 2002. A number of works directed by Katrina are held in collections including Lux Artists’ Moving Image UK, Routledge’s on-line Performance Archive and the British Council. Katrina is currently a Dance Base Associate Artist and a Dance North Associate Artist.
Katrina is the author of Making Video Dance – a step-by-step guide to creating dance for the screen, the second edition of which was published by Routledge in 2018. Katrina has mentored, taught workshops and lectured across the globe. She is Adjunct Associate Professor in the College of Fine Arts at the University of Utah, USA, where she leads the screendance programme. Most recently, Katrina has been adapting her teaching to the on-line environment and enjoying the new concepts and potential that this is offering in her work with artists across the world.
Kirstie Simson (UK) has been a continuous explosion in the contemporary dance scene, bringing audiences into contact with the vitality of pure creation in moment after moment of virtuoso improvisation. Called "a force of nature" by the New York Times, she is an award-winning dancer and teacher who has "immeasurably enriched and expanded the boundaries of New Dance" according to Time Out Magazine, London. Kirstie is renowned internationally as an excellent teacher, a captivating performer and a leading light in the field of Dance Improvisation. For the past thirteen years she has been a tenured professor in the Department of Dance at the University of Illinois. In August 2020 Kirstie returned to her home base in Wales from where she will continue to explore and share her work. She is also excited to begin an involvement with the Black Mountains College in Wales, who are in the process of designing an innovative degree course in ‘planet-centric education for building a better future’ that will be launched in September 2022. Kirstie currently serves on their Board of Education.
Supported by Creative Scotland & Scottish Government funding