BodyStories: Teresa Fellion Dance

Works: The Border Project

A physical response to the dilemma of human migration, Border  carves out a corporeal map of the familiar and unfamiliar, addressing subtler psychic borders that occur among the displaced and their pursuit of happiness and identity. “But what is that one place or the other, and how do we define the separation of the two?” We can call this separation a border, wall, city limits, or even a breakthrough, graduation, or epiphany, depending upon where we are and where we’re going. Crossing political borders and settling in a new location, deeper boundaries of language, culture, and class shape immigrants’ assimilation. It is then the second generation that is faced with crossing nuanced borders between home and school, parents and teachers, as they form their own identity. In this aforementioned journey, dancers embody what happens on the social level and recreate it on a magnified, human level. On an athletic, highly technical, and emotional journey of movement, dancers build and climb multi-level walls, collide, press, travel, wind, delineate, and reach. They immerse themselves in layered cooperative or alienating experiences with extreme endurance via accumulation, acceleration, and deceleration. If a border were simply a line drawn in the dirt…

Through study of languages including French, Spanish, Italian, Swahili, and Bulu, living abroad in four countries, and work experiences at UN African missions I have had deep interest in cultural differences and assimilation. Our group examined our own and researched others’ experiences of immigration in order to create a psychological, political, and emotional basis for this work.

Premiered: Lyon, France
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