Elena Demyanenko & Dai Jian

Elena Demyanenko

Elena Demyanenko is a Russian-born graduate of the Academy of Theatrical Arts (Moscow). Elena came to NYC in 2000 to work as guest artist with Riverdance on Broadway. In 2003, Demyanenko became a member of Stephen Petronio Company (2003-2008). Before joining Trisha Brown Dance Company in 2009, Demyanenko was involved in the Martha Clarke production Garden of Earthly Delights at Minetta Lane Theater. That same year she assisted Trisha Brown in creating aerial work for her new opera Pygmalion. As recipient of a Jerome Robbins Fellowship for the creation of new work, Demyanenko premiered her own work Disparate Bodies (in collaboration Joseph Poulson) at the Baryshnikov Arts Center in 2011. The same year Demyanenko performed as guest artist in Continuous Replay with the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company at New York Live Arts.

Demyanenko has made dances with Pavel Zustiak, Kota Yamazaki, Joseph Poulson, Lindsey Dietz Marchant and Jimena Paz. Her own choreography has been presented at many venues including Baryshnikov Arts Center, Architecture of Movement Festival, Yaroslavl, Russia, WOW Theater, Red Bean Studio, Movement Research at Judson Church, Dance New Amsterdam and Dixon Place. Demyanenko has also created dance films, for which she received an EMPAC Dance Movies Commission (2007) as well as being nominated for the Dance on Camera Jury Prize for her work on Kino Eye (2009). Her dance film Vienna was screened at the opening of the New Galapagos Art Space (2008).

As an alumni of Trisha Brown Dance Company Elena restaged Line Up at Milano Paolo Grazzi School in May 2012.

Dai Jian

Dai Jian is an artist from Hunan, China with roots in the combination between dance, Wushu Art, and the energetic translation of movement into material form as sculpture, performative installation and visual art. Jian began Wushu training at the age of five and has been creating his own work alongside a professional dance performance career since he was 18 years old.  In 1998 he was awarded at the National Dance Competition in China and in 1999 he won the New Stars in Performing Arts from Guangzhou City (choreography and dancing) with his first solo creation. His hybrid full-length works involving body-based performance, film and projected imagery were presented at the Beijing Art Salon and Shanghai Photography Gallery before joining the Jin Xing Dance Company as a dancer and choreographer in 2004, and then the New York-based Shen Wei Dance Arts in 2005. Jian received a fellowship from the Asian Cultural Council in New York, a full scholarship to attend the American Dance Festival in 2004 and was Shen Wei’s assistant for the opening ceremonies of the 2008 Beijing Olympics. In 2012 he was invited to choreography the compulsory piece for Male solo for the Boston International Ballet Competition. He has also choreographed for the Guang Dong Modern Dance Company.

In his choreography, improvisation and installation, Jian incorporates interactive and visual elements as essential to questioning the body and psychology in human experience.  In 2009, Jian directed the full evening-length multimedia performance Non Space Restriction in Shanghai, China, utilizing internet chat rooms live within the sculptural installation supporting the dance.  He has collaborated with visual artist Kimberly Mayhorn, Mimi Gerrard (video), filmmaker Katrina McPherson, as well as in improvisation/co-choreography with Kirstie Simson, Michael Schumaker, Yin Mei and Hou Ying.  His choreographic works for the theater have been commissioned by Queen’s College Dance Department, Carolina Friends School (Durham, North Carolina), New York Chinese Cultural Center, and the Puffin Room, NY.

Self-taught in the visual arts, Jian is a graduate of the Guangzhou Arts Academy and the Beijing Dance Academy (BFA), founded by Madam Yang MeiQi, with early specializations in ballet, Chinese classical dance and Chinese folk dance shifting to modern dance techniques and compositional improvisation. Alongside his work with Shen Wei Dance Arts, he has been a company member of Trisha Brown Dance Company since 2009, performing worldwide for these two companies at venues such as the Lincoln Center Festival, Kennedy Center, Brooklyn Academy of Music, American Dance Festival, Museum of Modern Art, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Institute for Contemporary Art Boston, Jacob’s Pillow, Baryshnikov Arts Center, Dance Theater Workshop and across the United States; in London at the Barbican, Tate Modern, Dance Umbrella; in France, Theatre National de Chaillot, Theatre National and Centre National de la Danse de Toulouse, Les Hivemalees with L’Opera Theatre d’Avignon, Musee D’art Contemporain Lyon, Grand Théâtre de Provence and more, as well as throughout Greece, the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Belgium, Luxembourg, Austria, Germany, Serbia, Hungary, Ireland, Mexico, Brazil, Canada, Australia, and Korea. Jian left his professional dance company work in early 2012 in order to fully pursue his independent work.