Annie grew up dancing in Minnesota, then went on to earn a BFA in Dance from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, before moving to London to join Candoco in 2008. In addition to her work with the company, she has performed in works by Bebe Miller, Pat Graney, Michael Sommers, Morgan Thorson and Karen Sherman, among others, and has dabbled in theatre and performance art. This is her third season with Candoco.
Q&A with Annie
What has been your highlight/ favourite time with Candoco so far?
There are things I enjoy about every stage in the process of making and touring work and teaching. I love beginning a new creative process with a choreographer, coming into the studio with a head full of expectation and a body full of potential, but still not really knowing what will happen. There are always surprises and challenges that stretch the idea of what we are capable of as a group of performers–I think there are things we now do quite easily in performance that we never would have expected of ourselves! Getting to travel is a huge bonus of this job, and I love going to new places, meeting new people, and experiencing different cultures, languages, and foods. Climbing the Great Wall of China, swimming in the rivers and lakes of Switzerland, eating fish every morning in Japan, and drinking fresh tropical juices and green coconut in Brazil all come to mind, though each place we go to is memorable for one reason or another! I am also continuously surprised, challenged and impressed by the participants in the workshops we lead around the world–each group of people has a unique dynamic, and I am always amazed to see what fantastic movement results so quickly when people truly bring themselves into the room.
Why dance? Why dance for Candoco?
In a totally geeky way, I love bodies in motion and what they can do-our bodies are really intelligent. I love to move, and I’m interested in exploring and pushing what my body can do. And let’s be honest, I’m probably a bit of a show-off! I was interested in Candoco because I think it’s important to examine and question our ideas about who can be a dancer and what dance is. I also think it’s important that everyone who wants to dance gets an opportunity to do so. Creatively, I like seeing what comes out of a group of people with different bodies, ideas, experiences and personalities being thrown together in a studio. I love idiosyncrasies. I also wanted to work with a company where I would be challenged as a performer, and where I would get a chance to work with talented choreographers and movers. I’m interested in working in a setting where dancers are not expendable, where it’s about seeing who’s in the room and utilizing their uniqueness; I like that the work we make is tailored to the performers in the company. I like that disability can be an advantage.