Joanna Kotze is a Brooklyn-based choreographer, dancer and educator who has been part of the New York dance community since 1998. She creates highly physical dance performances through a collaborative, multi-disciplinary process, presenting ways to look at effort, labor, humor, violence, unpredictability, and beauty through movement as well as the body’s relationship to sound, light, physical materials and space. Her evening-length piece, ‘lectric Eye, premiered at The Space at Irondale, in Brooklyn, New York, February 9-12, 2022. She also recently finished a short film project called Nothing’s changed except for everything with Tallahassee-based filmmaker, Chris Cameron, and New York-Based composer, Ryan Seaton. Her previous evening-length work, What will we be like when we get there, was nominated for a 2018 New York Dance and Performance Bessie Award for Outstanding Music Composition and Sound Design by collaborator Ryan Seaton.
Joanna received the 2013 New York Dance and Performance Bessie Award for Outstanding Emerging Choreographer. Her work has been supported by the Nathan M. Clark Foundation, City Artist Corps, New Music USA, the Jerome Foundation, Mertz-Gilmore Foundation, Harkness Foundation for Dance, New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) BUILD, Brooklyn Arts Council, Yellowhouse, and the Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant. Her choreography has been presented at Wanås Konst Sculpture Park in Sweden, The Irondale Center, The Yard, Bates Dance Festival, Stonington Opera House, New York Live Arts, The Wexner Center, Velocity Dance Center, the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, Baryshnikov Arts Center, Danspace Project, American Dance Institute, Bard College, Industry City, Show Room Gowanus, Lu Magnus gallery, Jacob’s Pillow Inside/Out, Dance New Amsterdam, Roulette, Dixon Place, 92nd Street Y, WAXworks, Soho20 gallery, and Movement Research at the Judson Church.
Joanna was recently an artist-in-residence at Milvus Artistic Research Center (MARC) in Knislinge, Sweden in June/July 2022 and performed a new site-specific solo, this is the beginning, this is the end, created in and for Wanås Konst Sculpture Park, also in Knislinge, as a joint commission between MARC and Wanås Konst. She will return to MARC/Wanås in summer 2023 as the curator of dance for the park’s summer performances. Joanna also recently set her large group work, BIG BEATS, on professional dancers in North Carolina through the American Dance Festival, and on students at University of the Arts, The Ailey School, and Bates Dance Festival. Her ongoing project, LONG DISTANCE DANCE DIALOGUES, has engaged with twelve dancers/choreographers around the world and will continue to develop over the next couple of years.
Joanna has had residency support from the Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography (MANCC) at Florida State University, the Alan M. Kriegsmann Creative Residency at Dance Place in Washington, D.C., Dance Program Malmö (Sweden), Exploring the Metropolis (EtM), Loghaven (Tennessee), The Bogliasco Foundation (Italy), The Yard (Martha’s Vineyard), New York Live Arts, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council (LMCC), Movement Research, The 92nd Street Y, Milvus Artistic Research Center (Sweden), Jacob’s Pillow, Bennington College, Sedona Arts Center (Arizona), Marble House Project (Vermont), The Camargo Foundation (France), Baryshnikov Arts Center, and Djerassi (California). She has had commissions to create new works on Gibney Dance Company (NYC), Toronto Dance Theatre (Toronto), Ririe-Woodbury (Salt Lake City), Zenon Dance (Minneapolis), and the James Sewell Ballet (Minneapolis) and has created original works on students at The Ailey School, University of the Arts, Barnard, The New School, Purchase, Long Island University, Ohio University, Southern Utah University and Miami University.
Joanna danced with Wally Cardona from 2000-2010 and again in 2018. She currently dances for Kimberly Bartosik/daela (2009-present) and Stacy Spence, and has worked with Kota Yamazaki, Netta Yerushalmy, Sam Kim, Sarah Skaggs, Christopher Williams, the Metropolitan Opera ballet, Daniel Charon, Nina Winthrop and others.
Joanna has served on panels for New York Live Arts’ Fresh Tracks, The Bogliasco Foundation, New Music USA, Marble House and Dance New Amsterdam and has curated performances for at the 92nd Street Y and Sundays on Broadway. She is on teaching faculty at Movement Research and has taught at Amherst College, Melbourne University, Toronto Dance Theatre, The Ailey School, Gibney Dance, Sarah Lawrence College, University of the Arts, Barnard College, NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, The New School, LIU, Southern Utah University, Ohio University, Miami University, Salt Dance Fest, Bates Dance Festival and the American Dance Festival. She is originally from South Africa and has a BA in Architecture from Miami University.