The Fellowship program supports four individuals for the academic year whose projects focus on anthropology, disability arts, classical Indian dance, and performance studies.

The Center for Ballet and the Arts at New York University, an international research institute for scholars and artists of ballet and related arts and sciences, announces four Fellows for the 2023-24 academic year.

Aimee Meredith Cox, Jerron Herman, André Lepecki, and Bijayini Satpathy will receive financial support, academic resources, and space to create new work and further their research. They join the CBA as it enters its 10th year as a place to incubate new work, build collaborations, and develop new ideas.

Cox, associate professor of anthropology at NYU, will work on a project involving dance, somatic healing and ethnography. Herman will explore the connection between disability justice and opera and how it might be applied to dance. Lepecki, a professor of performance studies and associate dean of the Center for Research and Study at NYU Tisch School of the Arts, will examine the role of politics in dances choreographed by Brazilian artists. Satpathy, an Odissi dancer, choreographer and teacher, will create a new work examining the shifting boundaries of gender.

“I am looking forward to watching these fellows develop their work. They come from distinct areas of practice and study, and we are certain they will gain perspective from each other, and
other current and alumni fellows at CBA,” says Center for Ballet and the Arts Founder and Director Jennifer Homans.

The CBA Fellowship program provides access to NYU’s scholarly and cultural resources, and encourages fellows to engage with people and ideas beyond their core disciplines without the pressure of a finished product. Each Fellow will present a public event featuring dance and talk that emerges from their work.

Previous Fellows have included choreographers Jamar Roberts, Jessica Lang, and Annie-B Parson, scholars Sophia Rosenfeld and Janice Ross, writer and former dancer Alma Guillermoprieto, composers Tarik O’Regan and Aiyana Braun, singer-songwriter Suzanne Vega, and filmmaker Frederick Wiseman.

About the Fellows

Aimee Meredith Cox
Aimee Meredith Cox is associate professor of Anthropology at NYU. Formerly a professional dancer, she performed and toured with Ailey II from the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and the Dance Theatre of Harlem. She leads yoga teacher training, retreats and workshops around the globe. Her monograph, Shapeshifters: Black Girls and the Choreography of Citizenship (2015), won the 2017 book award from the Society for the Anthropology of North America and the 2016 Victor Turner Book Prize in Ethnographic Writing. Previously a professor at Yale University, she is the editor of Gender: Space (2018).

Project: Moving Past Slow Death explores dance, somatic healing, performance and ethnography in an effort to imagine new ways of living and being.

Jerron Herman
Jerron Herman is an artist, choreographer, and co-director of the new opera, Sensorium Ex, commissioned and co-produced by VisionIntoArt and set to debut in 2025. He has premiered
work at the Danspace Project, Performance Space New York and the Whitney Museum of American Art. He received a 2021 award from the Foundation for Contemporary Art, won a 2021-22 Jerome Hill Artist Fellowship in Dance and a 2020 Disability Futures Fellowship funded by the Ford and Andrew W. Mellon foundations. He also won the 2021 PETRONIO Award and residency.

Project: Fermata: Disability, Dance & Opera seeks to uncover and translate a language of disability justice found in classical art forms. Two questions are central to his exploration: How does a disabled choreographer approach a classical form and how does literacy of form support disability aesthetics?

André Lepecki
André Lepecki is a professor of performance studies at NYU and associate dean of the Center for Research and Study at the Tisch School of the Arts. He is the editor of several anthologies on dance and performance theory, including Of the Presence of the Body (2004) and Points of Convergence (2015), and the author of Exhausting Dance: performance and the politics of movement (2006) and Singularities: dance in the age of performance (2016). He is also a performance curator who created works for MoMA PS1, MoMA-Warsaw, and the Sydney Biennial 2016.

Project: For The non-time of movement: choreopolitics, neoliberalism, neofascism, Lepecki will focus on recent works by several Brazilian choreographers and dancers to investigate the ways “movement” and “time” are fundamental political substances of the current moment.

Bijayini Satpathy
Bijayini Satpathy is a dancer, choreographer, teacher and scholar who is considered one of the world’s masters of Odissi dance, an Indian classical dance. Her first choreographed work, Abhipsaa – A Seeking, was commissioned by Duke Performances and Baryshnikov Arts Center and premiered in 2021. Since then she has choreographed several full-length dances, including Call of Dawn, SiMA, and Doha, and served as Artist-in-Residence at the Metropolitan Museum of Art for the 2021-22 season. She was named Best Solo Dancer by Dance Magazine in 2019 and was a NY Dance and Performance Bessie Award Honoree in 2020.

Project: NIRVIKALPA – transconceptual is a new dance in Satpathy’s choreographic journey. The gender practices of the Odissi dance form are stylistically fluid. Male dancers perform non-narrative choreography with Alasakanyā postures (feminine figures in repose) as impressively as do female dancers, while female dancers perform as male characters with equal force and conviction as their male counterparts. In this work, Satpathy will mediate the shift from self to character and the identity of one character to another in an effort to find moments that push performers to reach and live beyond the limits and capacities of the mind, and to empower them with immeasurable energy, self-esteem, and positivity.

About the Center for Ballet and the Arts
The Center for Ballet and the Arts at New York University (CBA) is an international research institute for scholars and artists of ballet and its related arts and sciences. It exists to inspire new ideas and new dances and to expand the way we think about the art form’s history, practice, and performance in the 21st century. The Center is made possible by founding support of the Mellon Foundation and ongoing support of NYU and CBA’s Center Circle.

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