The Mill/Michou Szabo
I create dance works that present the human spirit as unadorned as possible. Raw, exposed and dynamic – the physical language reflects the intimacy of life and the power of shared and individual experiences, exposing vulnerability, human fragility and the vast emotional terrain of the human soul. The work exists in atmospheric environments and live cinematic worlds where the smallest gesture can inhabit hundreds of moments and memories. The kinetic language is developed using an intuitive sensibility that hovers between wordless understanding and the profound unknown. The movement is woven with original sound scores to create textured fabrics, sometimes heavy and thick, sometimes rail thin and transparent. I honor the intimacy between the performer and the swirls of movement – complex, introspective, turbulent, heroic, tragic. As the performer’s individuality and solitary interpretations create vibrant pathways of the moving body, the viewer can relish in that intimate space through a visceral connection to swaths of rhythm, color, light, speed, space, time, and juxtapositions that cherish secret resonances of personal experience. Transcending our limitations and the expected, the work draws tangible weight from personal and poetic thresholds from living in this world. And even with other elements layered onto the work, it is the possible, the impossible and the immediate impulse of the moving body that forms the resilient yet tender core. From that movement, layers of possible meaning and thematic sensibilities are built and reverently revealed. With each work, I attempt to bring out the soul under the spirit of the work, the passion behind its logic – the logic of form and technique structuring the work and the passion of the themes embedded in the multiplexity of its language (including unspoken movement language) all directed toward a place where the heart and mind meet – a synthesis of live performance – and more importantly the synthesis of experience.
Michou Szabo studied piano performance at The Cleveland Institute of Music, film at New York University (BFA), and dance at SUNY Brockport (MFA) where he began his choreography. All three disciplines have jointly influenced his process and artistic aesthetic when creating movement based live performance. His first dance work, SUPERBLASTER was selected for the National American College Dance Festival performed at The Kennedy Center. Szabo received the first Martha Myers scholarship to study choreography at the American Dance Festival. In New York, his work has been presented twice by Movement Research at the Judson Church and also at Dixon Place, the 92nd Street Y, Dancenow/NYC/The Festival at Joyce Soho and Dance Theater Workshop and at La Mama for La Mama Moves Dance Festival. He presented work at the Merce Cunningham Studio in December 2004 in a shared program, returning in 2006 for a full evening of his own choreography. His first evening-length work, ALONE OH, with original music composed by Bessie Award winning composer Guy Yarden, premiered at CPR Center for Performance Research in January 2010. In 2012 he premiered THE WILD HEART – with video design by Nic Petry of Dancing Camera and sound design by Bobby McElver of The Wooster Group – in 3 of the large galleries at Gavin Brown’s enterprise. As a performer he has appeared in the revival of Meredith Monk’s QUARRY at the Spoleto Festival, Susan Marshall’s SPECTATORS AT AN EVENT at the Next Wave Festival, and with Brenda Angiel and Myriam Herve-Gil at the American Dance Festival. He was a member of Troika Ranch from 1997-2005, creating roles in 5 evening length works that utilized live interaction between performer and digital media. In 2005 he performed with Kota Yamazaki Fluid Hug-Hug at the TBA Festival. He performed with Ping Chong at La MaMa in May 2008 and in 2009 with Meredith Monk at the Guggenheim Museum recreating sections from her 1969 site specific work JUICE. He started The Mill in 2006 to develop his own live performance works.
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