PhD Proposal

Presentations, Research

Presenting my PhD dissertation proposal Thursday, November 3rd at 10am. The presentation is open to the public and will be held at SFU Surrey in room 2995.


Photo by Reese Muntean. Pictured: Antonio Somera, Vanessa Goodman, and Bevin Poole in The Fine Line ~ twisted angels, choreographed by Judith Garay.  Costume design by Margaret Jenkins.

NDEO Movement Sesssion

Classes and Workshops, Presentations, Research

I am very excited to be leading a movement session at NDEO on Friday, October 7 2:15-3:15 in room Washington A.  See below for a description of the session.



Exploring Embodiment: Applying Research in Embodied Cognition to Dance Practice

What does it mean to be embodied? The idea of embodiment is widely discussed in cognitive science, philosophy, technology design, dance research, and somatic practices. In this movement workshop we discuss and physically explore various viewpoints on embodiment–as well as the possibility of disembodiment.

Embodied Cognition is a theory that is becoming widely accepted in scientific communities. Its main premise is that cognitive processes do not only take place in the brain, but are shared between the body, brain and environment. Many scientists have turned to the dance community to study and validate this theory. For example, recent research suggests that our physical experiences influence how we perceive and observe movement. While this research is relevant to dance practice, it has not yet been fully integrated in teaching curriculums for dance.

The intersection of cognitive science and dance is an emerging field of study that can inform ways in which we teach and learn dance. In this workshop I explore ways of transferring knowledge in cognitive science to dance practice. Through guided movement exercises, participants experience concepts such as, cognitive interference, theories of attention, and modes of learning.

Through dance we can also explore bodily processes of cognition. In the last few years there has been a surge of government support in the United States to study the brain. However, as theories of embodied cognition gain traction in scientific domains, it becomes more apparent that it is difficult to study the brain without also studying the the role of the body.

Integrating cognitive science research into dance curriculum ensures a future where dancers are not only participants in experiments, but also researchers that develop theories of cognition based on their bodily expertise and experiences. The future of researching embodiment cannot be studied in a jar. Embodiment must be experienced, moved, and danced.

Phraseless Phrasing


I have now completed the LMA certification program through the LIMS Modular program in Belgium. In my final project I examined phrasing—or rather non-phrasing–in Yvonne Rainer’s Trio A. To find out more check out my abstract and some of the tools I used to conduct my analysis under the Research tab, “Phraseless Phrasing” project –or click here.

Trio A Timeline

Created with Timeline JS



Upcoming Presentations in DC and Irvine

Classes and Workshops, Presentations, Programs Classes and Workshops, Publications, Research

Looking forward to attending the NDEO  conference in Washington DC this October. I will be leading a movement session called: “Exploring Embodiment: Applying Research in Embodied Cognition to Dance Practice.”   

I am also looking forward to returning to my alma mater, UC Irvine in December to present at the Body of Knowledge: Embodied Cognition and the Arts conference. I will be presenting my paper with Professor Thecla Schiphorst, “Untying the Knot of Dance Movement Expertise: An Enactive Approach.”


Untying the Knot Picture

CORD/SDHS 2015 Proceedings Published


CORD/SDHS Athens Proceedings 2015 are now published! Check out my paper with Thecla Schiphorst, “Transmitting and Distributing Bodily Knowledge in the Digital Age”…

Abstract: We explore embodiment in the digital age—a time where dance is now often passed down from body—to computer—to body. While some believe digitally mediated transmission of bodily knowledge to be “disembodied,” we propose that digital technology can extend our conceptions of embodiment by creating more space for knowledge and growth within the field of dance. We seek to understand the expanding notion of embodiment through a case study that examines the transmission of bodily knowledge in the performance Longing and Forgetting. We compare differences in transmitting bodily knowledge through multiple modes: phenomenological accounts, text, and video.

POEME in Kraków, Poland

Interactive Movement Installation, Presentations, Research

Introducing Schrifttanz–POEME’s newest author!

POEME teams up with the ARTeFACT project to explore conceptual metaphors. 

Check out our abstract Schrifttanz: Written Dance/Movement Poems, presented at the Digital Humanities 2016 conference in Kraków, Poland on July 14, 2016.  

Authors: Susan L. Wiesner, Shannon Cuykendall, Ethan Soutar-Rau, Rommie L. Stalnaker, Thecla Schiphorst, Karen Bradley

Pictures from our demo of POEME: Schrifttanz Edition!