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PROVIDENCE, RI: Motion State Dance Film Series

PROVIDENCE, RI: Motion State Dance Film Series


The Patio at The Plant, 60 Valley Street, Providence


Friday, September 30, 2022 - 7:30pm





Dance Film Screening on the Patio at the Plant

Information/Reservations: www.motionstatearts.org 

Friday, September 30, 2022, 7:30pm

The Patio at The Plant, 60 Valley Street, Providence



It’s the fifth season of the Motion State Dance Film Series! The only year-long, traveling short film festival in New England devoted to showcasing the diversity of contemporary creative voices exploring choreography for the camera.

By taking the festival “on the road” and into non-traditional film venues, such as art galleries, music halls, performing arts theaters and university classrooms, the Motion State Dance Film Series seeks to expose the films and filmmakers to new audiences. Screenings are followed by public Q & As with the curators and festival artists whenever possible. Past venues have included Jamestown Arts Center (RI), Dean College (Franklin, MA), Newport Art Museum (RI), Zeiterion Theatre (New Bedford, MA), Columbus Theatre (Providence, RI), Troop (Providence), and online.

We received a record number of submissions from around the world to our open call for films. Season five films include:


All a Blur, Ariel Scott (USA)

Worlds blur, time drips, and reality falters. All a Blur is an experimental screendance that explores themes of escapism, fantasy, and how we cope with being isolated.

Ariel Scott is a contemporary choreographer, dancer, and screendance maker based in Las Vegas. Ariel graduated with a BFA in Dance-Choreography from the University of California Irvine, in 2022, and holds an AA in dance from Santa Monica College, earned in 2020. As a performer, Ariel has worked with choreographers Seda Aybay, Jay Carlon, Bill Evans, Charlotte Griffin, Ariyan Johnson, Jae Lee, Sri Susilowati, Mark Tomasic, S. Ama Wray, and others. Ariel has also been honored to present her choreographies at the Broad Stage, the Claire Trevor Theatre, and the Martha B. Knoebel Theater. Ariel is a proud recipient of the Beth and Walter Koehler Scholarship, Claire Trevor Society Scholarship, Donald McKayle Scholarship, and Fred Astaire Dance Scholarship.


Bert the Turtle's DOA, 2Faced Dance Company (UK)

From the early 1950s until the end of the Cold War, American School children were introduced to an animated turtle, who charmingly taught them how to survive an atomic bomb. Four dancers, equally charming, form this film, which quickly disintegrates into chaos as it becomes clear that poor old Bert was never very convincing at all.

Dance and film artist Isla Hurst makes dance films. Choreography and direction is her main forte, although she has also written and performed for other directors. Good screendance, she believes, should be respectful of both disciplines it combines, whilst diminishing neither. That said, dance, though the main attraction of her work, is rarely the only one, and by working with a multidisciplinary approach, she feels dance can exist as the ultimate form of surrealism; an invaluable tool to serve character, narrative and meaning.


heart beats, Anabella Lenzu (US)

heart beats conjures memories of the mother-daughter relationship, speaks to the loss of innocence, discipline, freedom, youth, aging, and the passage of time.

Originally from Argentina, Anabella Lenzu is a dancer, choreographer, writer and teacher with over 30 years of experience working in Argentina, Chile, Italy, and the USA. Lenzu directs her own company, Anabella Lenzu/DanceDrama, which since 2006 has presented 400 performances, created 15 choreographic works and performed at 100 venues, presenting thought provoking and historically conscious dance-theater in NYC. As a choreographer, she has been commissioned all over the world for opera, TV programs, theatre productions, and by many dance companies. She has produced and directed several award-winning short dance films and screened her work in over 150 festivals both nationally and internationally.


Ma Cigno, Simone Rosset (Italy)

In an atmosphere suspended between real and grotesque places, between the stereotyped movement and the visual flow, we follow the gait of a swan in heel 20, perhaps more clumsy and unfortunate than others, which has no place in the pond of its life.

Simone Rosset is a director and visual artist. He studied at the Brera Academy of Fine Arts, and graduated from the Centro sperimentale di cinematografia, Animation Department. In his artistic language, he intersects the codes of the documentary with experimental animation, interested in exploring the possible points of contact and trespass between the scientific and the poetic, between the real and the imaginary.


OVERANDOVER, McKay House & Utam Moses (USA)

The film explores the archetypal feminine and the nature of care and Eros as a state of being, layering the somatics of tending and attending to each other and place. The camera dances and tracks experience, shaping the texture of time and focus and relationship with the viewer. We walk over and over, time over and over, lost over and over, you and I are here over and over.

McKay House and Utam Moses have been in collaboration over the last five years creating film works and live performances that transform the temporal into the metaphysical, using somatic practices and Contact Improvisation as a vehicle for their explorations. Their work explores different forms of intimacy, between people and the spaces they inhabit and leave behind. Their current work, OVERANDOVER, is part of an ongoing collaborative project, Penumbra.


Pedestrian, Doron Perk (USA)

Pedestrian was filmed in Cleveland Grover Playground in Ridgewood, one of the most diverse yet relaxed neighborhoods in New York City. With this project, we explored existing together in the shared backyard, and explored the possibilities of music, the moving body, and the eye of the camera.

Doron Perk is a dancer, choreographer, and teacher on a journey to find ultimate freedom in movement. Born in 1990 near Jerusalem, Israel, Doron started folk dancing at the age of 8. He then studied ballet, contemporary, and composition at the high school and conservatory of the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance with the support of the America-Israel Cultural Foundation. He danced in the Croatian National Theater Ballet in Split, Compañía Nacional de Danza in Madrid, and The Batsheva Ensemble in Tel Aviv. In 2016, Doron moved to New York City with an O1 visa and started working as an independent artist, Gaga movement teacher, and dancer/associate director with ZviDance.


Picknick, Verena Billinger & Sebastian Schulz (Germany)

Four dancers in traditional costumes sit around a dance floor where they alternately move through a minimalist choreography. While they pop the corks, eat, drink, laugh with one another and observe each other, their movements tell of loss, loneliness, grief, speechlessness. Nevertheless, at the same time they attempt to reach the others.

Verena Billinger and Sebastian Schulz are artists and choreographers and, apart from video works, have not produced dance films up until now. Based in and from Germany, their choreographies have been shown in Europe and Asia and they were awarded with several prizes for their work, among those the “Bearers of Hope for Dance“ award from European Dance magazine Tanz and the renowned Funding Prize of the Region of North Rhine-Westphalia. In their artistic work, Billinger and Schulz look at society and the public. For the artistic shaping and staging they focus their images and topics on the body’s role, whose movement they understand as a conveyor and sign of life.


UNCONVENTIONAL DANCE: BIG Kmart, Hollis Bartlett & Nattie Trogdon (USA)

The first in a series of dance films and live performances, exploring dance and its relationship to setting. By placing dances in non-traditional and everyday spaces (grocery stores, abandoned malls, parks, museums, a Target bathroom) we are examining movement, memories, and lineages within this form. Through this multi-year project we’re continuing to question the hierarchy of spaces and assumptions of dance performance. Each iteration of this project will be tailored to its specific space; highlighting larger societal themes like late stage capitalism, climate change, decaying infrastructure, accessibility, gatekeeping, performativity and community, to create a collage of dances that stir up memories and nostalgia while allowing for a reimagining of how dance exists in our spaces and in our bodies.

Hollis Bartlett and Nattie Trogdon are performers, practitioners, and partners based in Brooklyn, NY. Their collaborations include films and live performances which interrogate their lineage and intentionally craft experimental, risk-taking works that disrupt the hierarchy of spaces and assumptions of dance performance. Their work has been presented at Gibney (Work Up Artists), DMAC, No Theme Festival, Earthdance, SCDT, and CPR. They’ve been awarded artist residencies at The Atlantic Center for the Arts, The Visionary, MOtiVE, Mana Contemporary and NYU, and have received commissions from Swarthmore, SUNY Brockport, Roger Williams, SUNY Purchase, University of Maryland, and Salem State.


un·fixed still life of Dolly S. Dalí... a mini epic, Jennifer Scully-Thurston (USA)

A “coming of age" parable OR cautionary tale, of a woman turning into a Dalí painting.

Jennifer Scully-Thurston’s career includes dancing in shows, contemporary companies and teaching. Her writing caught the eye of Dance Critics Association and received their Emerging Writer Award. Her film journey began in animation with Grasshorse Studios. She continued her exploration of administrative work with Core Dance, in Houston and Atlanta, in public school systems with NC Arts in Action and today as Manager of Studio Programs and Community Engagement at American Dance Festival. Scully’s curation and adjudication include EnCore: Dance on Film, James River Film Festival, ADF’s Movies by Movers and Screen Dance International. Committed to serving the global DANCE community, she is Founder and Director of FilmFest by Rogue Dancer, a monthly thematic on-line event devoted exclusively to Dance.


Film stills: 

  • All a Blur, Ariel Scott
  • Bert the Turtle's DOA, 2Faced Dance Company
  • heart beats, Anabella Lenzu
  • Ma Cigno, Simone Rosset
  • OVERANDOVER, McKay House & Utam Moses
  • Pedestrian, Doron Perk
  • Picknick, Verena Billinger & Sebastian Schulz
  • UNCONVENTIONAL DANCE: BIG Kmart, Hollis Bartlett & Nattie Trogdon
  • un·fixed still life of Dolly S. Dalí... a mini epic, Jennifer Scully-Thurston



Produced by Motion State Arts, a nonprofit organization celebrating contemporary dance and movement-based art by incubating innovative ideas and presenting forward-thinking performances.



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