ARTIST SPOTLIGHT 01: FANA FRASER
Get to know Fana Fraser, choreographer and 1 of 10 presented artists during our upcoming performance series, Volume VI, Issue II: MOVEMENT CURRENCY from August 19 to 21, 2016. Pulling from her Caribbean decent; femininity; dying, death, decay; and, the nurturing of newness, Fana aimes to conjure a space for performer and witness to negotiate ways of being. Learn more about Fana on our Artist Spotlight and see her work on Sunday, August 21 at 3pm + 7pm.
Three words that Describe your Choreography
Intimate, Detailed, Absurd
Fana Fraser is a performer based in New York City, and is a 2016 artist-in-residence at the Dance & Performance Institute in Trinidad & Tobago, and a resident artist for Open Call 2016 - a project partnership between BAAD! and Pepatián. Her work has been presented at Emerging Artists Theatre's "Best of New Works Series", BAAD!ASS WOMEN Festival, The Field's 30th Anniversary at Dixon Place, and WestFest Dance. Fana has performed with Ailey II, Sidra Bell Dance NY, The Francesca Harper Project, The Metropolitan Opera, Andrea Miller for Hermès, and with Ryan McNamara for Performa 13, Art Basel Miami 2014, and Guggenheim Works & Process 2016. Currently, Fana works with Camille A. Brown & Dancers and Ryan McNamara, and beginning in August 2016, will serve as rehearsal director for Ailey II. She holds a BFA in Dance with honors from Fordham University and The Ailey School.
About Fana's Creative Process
I often daydream myself into bizarre, delightful, and problematic scenarios. As I piece together these fragments, I am finding recurring plots that blend underbelly tempos of the Caribbean - the place where my navel string is buried; assumptions and anxieties surrounding femininity; dying, death, decay; and, the nurturing of newness. More and more I am listening, as my body reveals these stories to be from a seemingly endless source of experience. My performance work harnesses dance and theatre to create a playground where histories and future tales are rigorously reimagined with compassion, wildness, and power. I am conjuring a space for performer and witness to negotiate ways of being.
Do you work in other mediums other than dance/performance? If so, what, and how/why did you get into it?
My doodles are beginning to take on a life of their own. The illustrations are increasingly peculiar and fun. I’m imagining characters and stories that are relevant to a contemporary Caribbean children’s audience. Maybe I’ll study animation. I love the freedom of illustration and animation - you can break all the rules, defy the laws of physics - you basically create the universe you want.
What is one of your most memorable moments of an artist, thus far?
In my primary school production of Pinocchio, I was the ballerina marionette in Geppetto’s shop. I must have been about seven or eight. I’m from Trinidad and Tobago, and we are located about 11 degrees above the equator. At the time, Queen’s Hall, the theater where we performed, was not air-conditioned and under those stage lights, it was hot. I had to be still for a really long time in my tights and layered tutu with the evening insects buzzing around my face. I distinctly remember willing myself to commit to character, not moving a muscle until it was my cue to come to life. And when that time came, I danced in all my eight year old glory.
What is your favorite part of the body, and why?
Hands down, the womb! Also, hands and feet, fingers and toes - the potential for infinite detail.
Free space! Anything else that you would like to share?
See Fana in Volume VI, Issue II: MOVEMENT CURRENCY, on Sunday, August 21 at 3pm + 7pm.