Choreographer Wins Jacob's Pillow Dance Award

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BECKET, Mass. — Faye Driscoll, hailed as "a postmillenium postmodern wild woman" by Deborah Jowitt of The Village Voice, has received the 12th annual Jacob's Pillow Dance Award.

The Bessie Award-winning choreographer, director and alumnus of The School at Jacob’s Pillow joins a group of honorees that includes Annie-B Parson and Paul Lazar of Big Dance Theater, Kyle Abraham of Abraham.in.Motion, Michelle Dorrance of Dorrance Dance, Camille A. Brown of Camille A. Brown & Dancers, and Liz Lerman of Dance Exchange.

The award will be formally presented as part of the Jacob’s Pillow Season Opening Gala on June 16, followed by the presentation of Driscoll’s work at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival for the second consecutive summer, Aug. 1-5.

"Faye Driscoll is an artist/philosopher who is asking important questions: what does performance tell us about participation and about our responsibility to engage? She is keenly aware that the moment of performance is only made by the presence of both performer and audience member, and she is interested in the highly charged space that forms between them. She's consistently interrogating what it means to be human and all the ways we put on personas in our lives. She's unafraid to take risks, to ask questions we may not want to ask, and it’s the purity of that quest that I so admire. We are also so proud that she is an alumnus of The School at Jacob's Pillow," Jacob's Pillow Director Pamela Tatge said.

"I am honored to receive this award and be a part of the stupefying history that is Jacob’s Pillow," Driscoll said. "I was a student at the Pillow when I was 19. I remember sweating profusely in the Horton workshop all day, and then having my mind expanded watching all of the magical companies perform at night. It is profound for me to have my work become a part of the incredible legacy of Jacob's Pillow. I feel like I am holding that vulnerable 19-year-old who watched from the wings proudly in my heart."

In her own words, Driscoll's work as a choreographer and director is rooted in "an obsession with the problem of being 'somebody' in a world of other 'somebodies' and all of the conflicts and comedy born in our interactions with others." By creating an immersive world of sensorial complexity and perceptual disorientation through an unwavering exploration into the ritual of performance, Driscoll investigates meticulously structured improvisatory choreography amid set, sound, production and audience interaction.

In her most recent body of work, the Thank You For Coming series, Driscoll extends the sphere of influence of performance, creating a communal space where everything is questioned, heightened and palpable. Praised by Wendy Perron of Dance Magazine as "the most engaging performance I've seen in a long time," the Thank You For Coming trilogy's two current iterations have been commissioned and presented nationally and internationally by acclaimed presenters over the past four years, including Brooklyn Academy of Music, the Wexner Center for the Arts at The Ohio State University, the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, and the New England Foundation for the Arts’ National Dance Project.

 


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