• I Am an Artist

    by  • March 26, 2019 • Dance Program, One Year Program, Student Life, Uncategorized, Undergraduate Physical Theatre • 0 Comments



    This week we hear about small discoveries as our students move into the last quarter of their time here.


    MaryKate Korbisch, Coastal Carolina University

    One Year Physical Theatre Program

    My time here at the ADA has been unforgettable; easily the best decision of my life so far. I have learned more about myself in the past seven months than I have in 20 years. One of the biggest indicators of my growth is how I now identify. Before this experience, I never called myself an artist. I do now. And here I am treated as an artist. My instructors see me as an artist. My instructors work with me as an artist, and we collaborate together. I will cherish each and every moment spent here forever.

    Emily Forster, Muhlenberg College

    Semester Physical Theatre Program

    This morning, Voice and Ensemble Performance began with a few “destructuring” exercises, lead by Dory Sibley. Destructuring, as I am currently processing it, is one way for the body to release tension and relieve trauma. The tremor work opens the body in new and unexpected ways, and it can occasionally initiate an emotional release. (This work is inspired by Fitzmaurice Technique and allows the voice to find free passage through the body).

    This morning, my body released. And, as I was physically and emotionally raw, re-adjusting to the world around me, I was asked to write a story about the image before me. The following story, thoroughly immersed in the memories, experiences, and emotional states of my youth, began to develop, raw and unrestricted, right before my eyes.

    I lay on the floor, hand on my stomach, in my white dress. I ran away from my Bat Mitzvah. It was too much. The people staring at me, the sounds of those expecting from me. I ran. I ran and I ran. First, I ran to grab my white tennis shoes and white socks that sat on my doorstep, and I sprinted farther, still in my dainty white heels, till I found that little place at the edge of the woods on the outskirts of the park. The place that nobody knows about but me. Me and my little sister that is. Here, hiding out, I tossed my dainty white heels into the bushes, far away from sight and mind, and I put on my socks and tennies. The shoes that share my identity, worn with history, meaning and our past. Shoes on, I looked at the trees, followed them up and up, out into a place I’ve always wanted to go. I cannot climb these trees, with their elongated trunks, but oh do I wish I could… My eyes fall on a wooden table, and the crackling of the leaves brings my eye to two little eyes behind a tree. My sister. I go to her and hug her from behind, and she leads me to the table. We lay across it, her head on my stomach, and I know we are safe. Although we are not invisible, we are in our spot. With my real shoes and our real moment, in the silence of understanding and escape. I know she will protect me, if people or danger come our way. I fall into sleep beneath the tears of overwhelming stimulation, of nauseating expectation, of sounds that pierce my body without a thought of who I am or of what I might want. I drift beneath the expanse of where I wish to be, and my sister moves to witness beyond us. I know I can trust her to be bubbling with joy in my misery, in my surrender. She will take care of everything, should anyone seek to pull me back , she will assure they understand.

    Thank you for sharing in this moment of mine at the Accademia dell’Arte! I cannot wait to discover more moments like these here, moments in which I feel simply open and true.



    Jess Le-McKeown, Emory College

    Semester Physical Theatre Program

    Growing up in California, going to the beach was just something I could do on a whim. Sometimes, it would be 1am on a weekend and my friends and I would jump in the car and drive for twenty minutes just to sit on the edge of one of the cliffs and dangle our feet above the sand while listening to either the quiet lap of the water or the crashing of the waves. Then I moved to Georgia, and the water is just too far away. The longing to be just near the water didn’t go away, though. Since the weather has started to get warmer here in Italy, my friends and I have been itching to get near any body of water, and when the weather forecast said how beautiful it was going to be this weekend, we jumped at the chance. One of my friends had seen the huge lake in Perugia on a train ride and hadn’t been able to stop thinking or talking about it since. So at 10am on Saturday morning, a bunch of us threw on our swimsuits and hopped on the slowest train I have ever ridden on and then walked for fifteen minutes to get to this small strip of sand on the edge of a freezing cold lake. We all laid out under the warm sun even though all the Italians were in their heavy winter coats and hats. It couldn’t have been more than ten minutes before all of us pulled out some sort of course work, and we all laughed when we noticed. It was a funny reminder that no matter how hard we try to throw ourselves into what we used to do back home, the pull of the work we do at the ADA is too enticing. I find myself pondering philosophical discussions we’ve had with Emilia or a specific movement combination we’ve worked on with Nhandan or a voice exercise we explored with Dory. I can feel these artistic exploits constantly present in my head, and I think that if I continue to be able to think about all of the things we’ve learned here like this, these things are going to affect me, not just as an artist, but as person.

    Avery Gerhardt, Boston Conservatory at Berklee 

    Dance Program


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