Alice Sheppard / Kinetic Light
Kinetic Light is a project-based collective made up of Alice Sheppard (choreographer, dancer), Laurel Lawson (collaborator, dancer) and Michael Maag (projection and lighting designer). Kinetic Light creates, performs, and teaches at the intersections of disability, dance, and race. The collective’s rigorous investment in the histories, cultures, and artistic work of disabled people and people of color transforms our understandings of the moving world. Working in the disciplines of art, design, architecture, and social justice, Kinetic Light showcases freedom of movement, revealing how mobility – literal, physical, and conceptual – is fundamental to participation in civic life.
Alice has been traveling the world dancing professionally for over a decade, performing with such companies as AXIS Dance Company from Oakland, California and Marc Brew Company in the UK. She started making her own work in 2012, and DESCENT is her most ambitious project to date. DESCENT is the production that no other choreographer would dare to create for Alice to perform — so she gathered a dream team of collaborators around her to make it a reality. As a performer, Alice embodies the character of Andromeda as fierce yet vulnerable and yearning.
Laurel has been performing since the age of five. She is a dancer with Full Radius Dance, an athlete in para ice hockey, and has a software engineering consultancy based in Atlanta, Georgia. She has trained extensively with Full Radius Dance since 2004 and is the perfect choice as Alice’s partner in the adventurous athleticism demanded by the DESCENT
ramp. Laurel embodies the character of Venus as a mix of strength and sensuality.
Michael has been making magic with light and video as Resident Lighting Designer at The Oregon Shakespeare Festival (OSF) for over 15 years; he was also pivotal in the building of OSF’s new accessible outdoor stage. He performs the 300+ cues in DESCENT as a video DJ would, responding in concert with the dancers and the music. Michael rounds out the artistic team, making Kinetic Light the first collective led entirely by professional disabled artists.