Barefoot Ballerina; my first dance class in Philadelphia

Barefoot Ballerina; my first dance class in Philadelphia

I glance at the clock on my new coffee maker: 6:47. Taking in a deep breath of air, I close the Netflix tab on my…

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Balanchine’s Agon: Keeping modernism on Pointe

Balanchine’s Agon: Keeping modernism on Pointe

Sophie Needelman TDPS 121 Prof. Johnson 5 November 2012 Balanchine’s Agon: Keeping modernism on Pointe George Balanchine is one of the most celebrated choreographers of…

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Dance to Defy the Odds: Movement Expressions

Dance to Defy the Odds: Movement Expressions

Every widely known form of art – from painting and sculpture to music and literature – is meant to inspire, amaze, tantalize, and captivate the…

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James Blake

James Blake

By Dana Needelman A few weeks ago, amongst the craziness of finals, one of my favorite artists came to Seattle. James Blake is an incredible…

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Review in San Francisco Weekly on Life Machine

Review in San Francisco Weekly on Life Machine

The Life Machine DanzHaus, 1275 Connecticut, SF; www.faultlinetheater.com. $15-20. Fri/8-Sat/9, 8pm; Sun/10,2pm. A naïve and restive young woman (Gwen Kingston), working as admin for a high-powered and ethically…

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The Daily Cal: "‘The Life Machine’ is a play about modern monstrosities"

The Daily Cal: “‘The Life Machine’ is a play about modern monstrosities”

By Zoe Klienfeld Just before the acting in Faultline Theater’s latest play, “The Life Machine,” dancers performed an abstract modern piece that recreated the processes…

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The First Time I Felt like a Seattle Resident.

The First Time I Felt like a Seattle Resident.

By Dana Needelman This past weekend, my cousin Alex from San Diego came to the UW to visit me and see what the Pacific North-West…

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Life Machine Choreographer's Notes

Life Machine Choreographer’s Notes

The Life Machine, in its various manifestations, is integrated into our existence in more ways than we can imagine. The body is often overlooked as…

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National Coming Out Day and Lech Lecha

National Coming Out Day and Lech Lecha

National Coming Out Day Address By Sophie Needelman 26 years ago today, members of the LGBT community marched on Washington for Gay and Lesbian rights,…

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Occupy Oakland, first hand

Occupy Oakland, first hand

By Sophie Needelman One of the things I love about dance is that it uses the body to make a statement. This seemingly simple feat…

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A Seattle Beginning

A Seattle Beginning

By Dana Needelman  Seattle, Washington. When other people hear about this city, the most immediate thought is “rain.” When I hear Seattle, the first thing…

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The Defiance Project to be featured in discussion of feminist identity in Bay Area Dance

The Defiance Project to be featured in discussion of feminist identity in Bay Area Dance

Various works of The Defiance Project will be the subject of discussion and analyzis during a lecture on feminism. Zvarik, who is an artist in…

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Autumn Newsletter

Autumn Newsletter

   

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Life Machine Choreography Phrase and Rehearsal Notes

Life Machine Choreography Phrase and Rehearsal Notes

Above is the main choreography phrase for the upcoming piece “Life Machine” to be performed with Faultline Theater Company. Above is the complete Dance A…

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Medea and Martha:  The Union of Greek Tragedy and Modern Dance

Medea and Martha: The Union of Greek Tragedy and Modern Dance

March 28, 2011  An extremely important thing to keep in mind when reading an ancient Greek work like Euripides’ Medea is that what is being…

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Feminine Writing- Feminine Communication

Feminine Writing- Feminine Communication

13 December 2011 French feminists Helene Cixous and Luce Irigaray call for the strategy of “ecriture feminine” to, instead of speak the same language and…

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Perception of Inhumanity: The “Deviation” of Female/Queer/Trans/Intersexed Bodies

Perception of Inhumanity: The “Deviation” of Female/Queer/Trans/Intersexed Bodies

13 December 2011 Female, queer, trans, and intersex are all socially constructed identities that are both projected onto others and performed by the self. This…

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Not-So- Prima Ballerina: Harvey Edwards’ Ballet Study

Not-So- Prima Ballerina: Harvey Edwards’ Ballet Study

May 11, 2011  Imagine yourself as a nine-year-old girl about to walk into her first dance class. Intimidated and alone, you wait in the hallway…

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Double Consciousness: Duality of Identity Addressed

Double Consciousness: Duality of Identity Addressed

11.23.10 The concept of double consciousness originally arose for W.E.B. Du Bois as he sought to understand and express the African American experience of identification…

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Merde: Oral Tradition and Post-Modern Dance

Merde: Oral Tradition and Post-Modern Dance

26 April 2012 “Merde” is the appropriate well-wishing for a dancer before a performance. It is bad luck to say “break a leg” to a…

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Presence Is

Presence Is

May 7, 2012 The nature of the relationship between the mind and the body remains in question. While they exist as two distinct entities, the…

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Identity Performance as Archive Fever

Identity Performance as Archive Fever

May 13, 2013 One is made powerful by the ability- the tendency and need- to change. The product of change itself may not always lead…

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Parker and Ellis

Parker and Ellis

Written and Performed by Sophie Needelman In Honor of Aaron Carl Commerson ——————————————————– Parker and Ellis. Parker Harrison Yates Commerson Ellis Rebecca Yates Commerson. These…

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Alternative Passover: A Multi-Cultural and Interfaith Food Justice Seder

Alternative Passover: A Multi-Cultural and Interfaith Food Justice Seder

  Food Justice Passover Hagaddah Written and Developed by Sophie Needelman for A Multicultural and Interfaith Passover Seder Put on by Berkeley Hillel and The…

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Why I Put Metal in my Face.

Why I Put Metal in my Face.

I never really went through a rebellious teenager phase. I was always very driven, obedient, self-motivated and productive with my actions and choices, never straying…

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Me and an Israeli drag queen in Tel Aviv

The Chutzpah of Homosexual and Jewish Identity Intersection

“There is always a link [between homosexuality and Jewishness in popular culture]… there’s the ‘oy vey’ over-the-top Jewish mother and the over-the-top drag queen…there are…

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A Trans-Zionist Manifesto

A Trans-Zionist Manifesto

Dancing in the streets, bra-less and bleeding through torn pants somewhere between the Freedom Tower and the Empire State Building where the lights of Times…

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The Violence of Slut-Shaming

The Violence of Slut-Shaming

By Sophie Needelman I am frustrated and ashamed to report that I have officially joined the ranks of womanhood through an experience that many female-bodied…

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Dance Studio Closets and Coming Out

Dance Studio Closets and Coming Out

I hate balls. Yes, that statement has taken on a whole new meaning since my adolescent years revealed homosexual preferences. At one point, though, it…

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Dance Anywhere

Dance Anywhere

  By Natalie Marsh Sophie Needelman’s The Defiance Project will perform a site-specific work on the Mario Savio steps at the University of California, Berkeley,…

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Silent Treatments: Background on the Exhibition on Silence at the Berkeley Art Museum

Silent Treatments: Background on the Exhibition on Silence at the Berkeley Art Museum

Silent Treatments blook. Posted February 22, 2013 11:54 AM Silence is more than a film series and gallery exhibition: it’s also a series of three L@TE performances,…

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"Israel Works" Reflection: Ritual vs. Habit

“Israel Works” Reflection: Ritual vs. Habit

By Sophie Needelman In response to my recent travels to Israel, I am devising a work in collaboration with my dancers that explores the relationship…

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Me and an Israeli drag queen in Tel Aviv

A Reflection on Israel from a Queer Perspective.

My recent travels to Israel where enlightening in many capacities. I had the opportunity to experience various regions of this beautiful country through Taglit Birthright,…

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Defiance Travel Journal Days 13-17: Wednesday Jan. 9th 2013 - Sunday Jan. 13th 2013

Defiance Travel Journal Days 13-17: Wednesday Jan. 9th 2013 – Sunday Jan. 13th 2013

My time after Israel included a five-day long visit to New York City, with time snacking and walking around and shopping in various neighborhoods of…

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Defiance Travel Journal Day 12: Tuesday Jan. 8th 2013, Israel Museum and Farewell

Defiance Travel Journal Day 12: Tuesday Jan. 8th 2013, Israel Museum and Farewell

  Our last day in Israel was a perfect end to our 10-day long international travel trip. We made a visit to the Israel Museum…

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Defiance Travel Journal Day 11: Monday Jan. 7th 2013, Old City of Jerusalem

Defiance Travel Journal Day 11: Monday Jan. 7th 2013, Old City of Jerusalem

Our big day in Jerusalem included a visit to the David Citadel Museum and a tour around some ruins in the Old City of Jerusalem….

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Defiance Travel Journal Day 10: Sunday Jan. 6th 2013, Mt. Herzl and Tel Aviv

Defiance Travel Journal Day 10: Sunday Jan. 6th 2013, Mt. Herzl and Tel Aviv

Our next big day of excursions began with a visit to Mount Herzl, Israel’s national military cemetery. Not only is this cemetery the burial site…

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Defiance Travel Journal Day 9: Saturday Jan. 5th 2013, Shabbat and Ben Yehuda St.

Defiance Travel Journal Day 9: Saturday Jan. 5th 2013, Shabbat and Ben Yehuda St.

Our day of rest on Shabbat gave us an excellent chance to explore the neighborhood we were in as well as get to know one…

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Defiance Travel Journal Day 8: Friday Jan. 4 2013, Yad Vashem

Defiance Travel Journal Day 8: Friday Jan. 4 2013, Yad Vashem

Our first full day in Jerusalem included a visit to Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust Museum. The architecture of the museum itself was stunning and very…

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Defiance Travel Journal Day 7: Thursday, Jan. 3 2013, Masada, the Dead Sea, Jerusalem

Defiance Travel Journal Day 7: Thursday, Jan. 3 2013, Masada, the Dead Sea, Jerusalem

We woke up in the Bedouin tent at the crack of dawn to begin our longest day of activities. We hiked up the famous mountain…

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Defiance Travel Journal Day 6: Wednesday Jan. 2 2013, Soldiers, Camels and the Bedouins

Defiance Travel Journal Day 6: Wednesday Jan. 2 2013, Soldiers, Camels and the Bedouins

We left the north of Israel today and headed into the desert near the Dead Sea for our more colorful day of travel yet. One…

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Defiance Travel Journal Day 5: Tuesday Jan. 1 2013, Mt. Arbel and Tsfat

Defiance Travel Journal Day 5: Tuesday Jan. 1 2013, Mt. Arbel and Tsfat

Our second day in the North began with a beautiful hike down Mount Arbel. Not only did we get to experience gorgeous views of the…

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Defiance Travel Journal Day 4: Monday Dec. 31st 2012, Tel Dan, Golan Heights, New Years Eve

Defiance Travel Journal Day 4: Monday Dec. 31st 2012, Tel Dan, Golan Heights, New Years Eve

Our first official day in Israel included various nature and archeological visits around the North of the country. Our first stop was a nature walk…

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Defiance Travel Journal Day 2: Saturday Dec. 29th 2012, Greenwich Village and JFK

Defiance Travel Journal Day 2: Saturday Dec. 29th 2012, Greenwich Village and JFK

I woke up today to skies filled with snow! It looked like it was snowing cotton balls, which was so picturesque and charming. The snow…

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The Defiance Project in The Coast News, July 11 2012

The Defiance Project in The Coast News, July 11 2012

Dancers defy odds, create their own company By Lillian Cox Jul 11, 2012 • 305 views • 0 comments SOLANA BEACH — A fundraiser for dance company…

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Recording Session Ramblings with Jason Lee Segal

Recording Session Ramblings with Jason Lee Segal

During a recent recording session with The Defiance Project’s resident filmmaker Jason Segal, director Sophie Needelman reflected on the concept of defiance and the way…

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Proposal: Israel Works and Birthright 2012/3

Proposal: Israel Works and Birthright 2012/3

In the context of my upcoming Birthright trip, I am interested in facilitating an intentionally creative experience to document, process, and respond to my time…

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Asset Mapping

Asset Mapping

Asset mapping is a process of assessing what resources, skills and strengths are available in the group and/or community. Specifically, The Defiance Project uses Asset…

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Reflections on an Interview with Dina Solomon, fundraiser for CalPerformances

Reflections on an Interview with Dina Solomon, fundraiser for CalPerformances

Dina Solomon works as a fundraiser for Cal Performances and has experience with institutional fundraising for other non-profits including Carnegie Hall. Dina Solomon has worked…

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Reflections on an Interview with Natalie Marsh, intern for Dancers’ Group San Francisco

Reflections on an Interview with Natalie Marsh, intern for Dancers’ Group San Francisco

Natalie Marsh is a student of the UC Berkeley department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies as well as a Student Dance Rep to the…

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Reflections on an Interview with Joe Goode, director of the Joe Goode Performance Group

Reflections on an Interview with Joe Goode, director of the Joe Goode Performance Group

Joe Goode is the founder and director of the Joe Goode Performance Group. He also a professor in the Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies Department…

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Reflections on an Interview with Katie Faulkner, director of the Little Seismic Dance Company

Reflections on an Interview with Katie Faulkner, director of the Little Seismic Dance Company

Katie Faulkner is a renowned Bay Area choreographer and artistic director of Little Seismic Dance Company. This interview was conducted on September 23rd, 2012. Katie…

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