Composition Workshop with Visiting Artist Rosy Simas

Merrill Gymnasium, Marcy Plavin Dance Studio
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Simas will share her philosophical approach to dance making. Participants will create a score that considers relationally and non-extractive methods of generating movement.

Rosy Simas is a transdisciplinary and dance artist. She lives and works in Mni Sota Makoce (Minneapolis, MN).

Simas is an enrolled member of the Seneca Nation, Heron clan. Her knowledge of her Haudenosaunee family and lineage is the underpinning of her relationship to culture and history—stored in her body—which is expressed through her work—of moving people, moving images, and moving objects that she makes for stage and installation. 

Simas’ work weaves personal and collective identity themes with family, sovereignty, equality, and healing. Simas creates dance work with a team of Native and BIPOC artists, driven by movement-vocabularies developed through deep listening.

Simas’ dance works include she who lives on the road to war,Weave, Skin(s), and We Wait in the Darkness, which have toured throughout Turtle Island. Simas’ installations have been exhibited at the Onöhsagwë:de’ Cultural Center, All My Relations Arts, SOO Visual Arts, and the Weisman Art Museum.

Simas has been honored as a Native Arts and Cultures Foundation Choreography Fellow (2013), Guggenheim Creative Arts Fellow (2015), McKnight Foundation Choreography Fellow (2016, 2022), Dance/USA Fellow (2018), a Joyce Awardee from the Joyce Foundation (2018), United States Artists Fellow (2022), and as a Doris Duke Artist Awardee (2023).

Her other accolades include a Native Arts and Cultures Foundation SHIFT award and multiple awards from New England Foundation for the Arts National Dance Project, the MAP Fund, and National Performance Network.

Simas is the artistic director of Rosy Simas Danse (RSD) and RSD Studios’ creative spaces for Native, Black, Indigenous, and artists of color. She is a 2023-2024 Visiting Distinguished Scholar at the University at Buffalo.

Co-sponsored by the Bates Museum of Art’s Exploding Native Inevitable Project and the Bates Dance Festival.

Photo Credit: Rosy Simas by Tim Rummelhoff Courtesy-McKnight Fellowships for Choreographers 2016

Alt text: Rosy Simas is seated and wearing a loose black button-down top. She has medium brown skin, dark black eyes, and dark brown hair. She is wearing a black shirt and multi-colored beaded hoop earrings.