Susan Marshall

Susan Marshall

New Work


January 23-24 at 8p

“One constant in Marshall’s career: She makes reality magical.”
-Deborah Jowitt

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    This semester I am currently teaching a Princeton Atelier course with Jason Treuting, composer and musician with So Percussion, and with Suzanne Bocanegra (Rome Prize award winner), a visual artist whose recent work involves performance. Suzanne, Jason and I are collaborating on “14 Tantrums” while teaching this course that leads students in the creation of their own performance projects involving the body, objects and sound. As we work with the students, we are creating short sketches that will inform the direction of our own work and provide the seeds for our creative period this summer.
    One of the inspirations for this work is a 2011 study that chronicles the arc and duration of temper tantrums. The study offers graphs and charts that seem to suggest predictable patterns to tantrums – the rates at which they escalate, their tonality and density, and the signs that indicate the tantrum is cycling down. To my eyes, these graphs look a bit like musical or choreographic scores. Our starting place is to translate these graphs into musical and choreographic languages and then to use them with a variety of movement and sound materials. Our thought is that the score structures will carry dramatic and emotional resonances because of their source and that will allow us freedom to be more abstract in our vocabularies. I’m also attracted to drawing a connection between tantruming and the frustration inherent in making art. Additionally, as the three of us are all parents and artists, I suspect the challenge of combining parenting with art-making will creep in to the work as well.

    Susan Marshall (Artistic Director/Choreographer) As artistic director of Susan Marshall & Company, Marshall has, since 1985, created over 40 dances on her company, and has also created works for the Lyon Opera Ballet, Frankfurt Ballet, and Mikhail Baryshnikov. Marshall’s work with Philip Glass includes the stage direction of “Book of Longing,” a song cycle based on the poetry of Leonard Cohen; and the choreography, direction and co-adaptation of “Les Enfants Terribles,” a dance opera based on the work of Jean Cocteau. Marshall has also choreographed/directed the music ensembles Eighth Blackbird and Bang on a Can’s Asphalt Orchestra. A 2000 recipient of a MacArthur fellowship, Marshall has received numerous other awards, including three New York Dance and Performance Awards (BESSIES) for Outstanding Choreographic Achievement, a Dance Magazine Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and was one of the first artists to receive an American Choreographer Award. In addition to her own company’s work, Marshall serves as Director of Dance at Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts, having assumed that post in September 2009.


    Suzanne Bocanegra is a New York-based artist, whose works include performance and installation art as well as visual and sound art. An alumna of the University of Texas and the San Francisco Art Institute, she is a recipient of the Rome Prize and her work has been exhibited at museums and galleries across the United States and in London. Her work “Bodycast,” featuring artist Frances McDormand, was presented as part of the 2013 Next Wave Festival at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.

    Composer Jason Treuting is a member of the New York-based quartet So Percussion. Trained at Eastman School of Music and Yale, he has performed with So and other ensembles around the world. Treuting has served as composer-in-residence at the Carlsbad Music Festival and the Canberra Int’l Music Festival, and been commissioned by Calder Quartet, janus trio, NOW Ensemble and the Orchestra of the League of Composers. He is currently Fellow in the Creative and Performing Arts at Princeton University.

    “She doesn’t define virtuosity as that dazzle that reinforces the distinction between spectators and performers that she likes to blur.”
    -The Village Voice

    “Marshall loves not only human motion but the motion of objects.”
    -The Village Voice

    Susan Marshall Gets Intimate: The Village Voice

    Imbuing Convention With the Uncommon: The New York Times

    See the big premiere, download the sketch: The Star-Ledger