Shannon O’Brien (ADA Dance Spring 2013):
It’s been two years since I left Arezzo and I still think about the Villa every day.
Since leaving Accademia, I graduated from George Washington University in May of 2014, with a BA in Dance and Speech & Hearing Sciences, concentrating in Deaf culture and American Sign Language. After graduation, I moved home to Pennsylvania and worked at Melmark, a school for people with special needs. I helped choreograph and rehearse the Melmark Players, an awesome theatre group of adults with intellectual disability, in their rendition of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. After work, I took class with Koresh Dance company in Philly. If you like dancing and you find yourself in Philly go take a class!
I moved to NYC in October and have been busy with various dance projects. I’m taking class almost every day, all over the city. I was recently in a short dance film by o f b o n e s || Holye Bynum which is coming out in a few months. This was my first film experience, and I enjoyed the challenge of performing for a camera rather than a live audience.
I’m currently dancing for the company InTW, lead by twin Tawainese choreographers Hsiao-Ting and Hsiao-Wei Hsieh. Fun fact: “InTW” is “twin” rearranged, and also includes the first initials of Ting and Wei’s names. The company consists of 7 dancers from 6 countries: Tawain, Japan, France, Germany, the US, and Canada. I love working with such an international bunch because some of our pieces are quite political. We pull inspiration from our various backgrounds which makes the performance much more meaningful. We just finished a residency at Queens College and are self-produced a show at the Martha Graham School coming up at the end of June. We’re premiering 52 Hertz, a work about sea creatures, one lonely whale, and kung fu. (Photo by Sinru Ku)