Karole Armitage, known as the 'punk ballerina' is the Artistic Director of the New York-based Armitage Gone! Dance Company. She was rigorously trained in classical ballet and began her professional career as a member of the Ballet du Grand Théâtre de Genève, Switzerland (1973-1975), a company devoted exclusively to the repertory of George Balanchine who was director of the company at that time. In 1976, she was invited to join Merce Cunningham's company, where she remained for five years, (1975-1981) performing leading roles in Cunningham's landmark works. Through her unique and acute knowledge of the aesthetic values of Balanchine and Cunningham, Armitage has created her own "voice" in the dichotomy of classical and modern dance, and is seen by some critics as the true choreographic heir to the two masters of 20th century American dance. In 2016, Armitage was honored with a Radcliffe Fellowship at Harvard University and a Simons Fellowship at The University of Kansas to study Native American Plains Culture with a focus on Pawnee, Kanza and Osage tribes. In 2017 she is beginning a muliti year Fellowship as an MIT Media Lab Directors Fellow.
Armitage created her first piece in 1979, followed by the iconic Drastic-Classicism in 1981. Throughout the 80s, she led her own New York-based dance company, The Armitage Ballet. Commissions from the Paris Opera Ballet and American Ballet Theatre led to choreographic commissions in Europe throughout the 80s, 90s and into the early 2000s with projects that continue to this day. She has created new works on companies and served as director of multiple Ballets and Companies.
Armitage is renowned for pushing the boundaries to create contemporary works that blend dance, music, visual ar and science to engage in philosophical questions about the search for meaning. She joins a legacy of process-focused experiemntal dance that embraces the ballet and modern dance heritages as well. She is inspired by disparate, non-narrative sources, from 20th century physics, to 16th century Florentine fashion, to pop culture and new media. In her hands, the classic vocabulary is given a needed shock to its system, with speed, fractured lines, abstractions and symmetry countermanded by asymmetry. Music is her script and she has collaborated with contemporary and experimentalist composers such as John Luther Adams, Thomas Adès, Rhys Chatham, Terry Dame, Vijay Iyer, David Lang, Lukas Ligeti, Lois V Vierk and John Zorn. The scores can be marked by extreme lyricism as well as dissonance, noise and polyrhythms. The sets and costumes for her works are often designed by leading artists in the contemporary art world, including Karen Kilimnik, Jeff Koons, Vera Lutter, Brice Marden, David Salle and Phillip Taaffe. Her scientific collaborators include Dr. Brian Greene (Columbia University) and Dr. Paul Ehrlich (Stanford University). The full-length works on theoretical physics and climate change respectively were presented at the World Science Festival and in the Milstein Hall of Ocean Life at the American Museum of Natural History.
Armitage’s work is at once both esoteric and popular, having choreographed two Broadway productions, videos for Madonna and Michael Jackson, several Merchant-Ivory films and Cirque du Soleil’s 2012 tent show. As the 2016 Artistic Director of Italy’s Ravello Fesival for an evening of American Dance, Armitage invited New York City Ballet, Martha Graham Dance Company, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, William Forsythe, Richard Move and her company to participate in a survey of the techniques and philosophies of American Dance set into motion by Native Americans performing the Prairie Chicken Dance.
She has directed operas from the baroque and contemporary repertoire for prestigious houses of Europe. In 2009, she was awarded France’s most prestigious award, Commandeur dans l'orde des Arts et des Lettres. She is the 2012 recipient of the artist-in-residence grant at the Chinati Foundation, founded by Donald Judd in Marfa, Texas, and received an honorary Doctorate of the Arts from the University of Kansas in 2013.
Source : Armitage Gone ! Dance
re information : https://www.armitagegonedance.org/