BARKIN/SELISSEN PROJECT creates explorative, thought provoking, emotionally driven work, “offering a unique blend of the physical and emotional aspects of dance. Barkin & Selissen captivate by bringing artistic creativity to each movement of the body and interpreting concepts through purposeful refinement of physical expression” (Patricia Weisenfeld). B/S P’s projects are inspired by the space and time between beings, between actions, and between breaths, where there is room to create authentic connections. As articulate, passionate, and precise movers, BARKIN/SELISSEN PROJECT uses both athletic and subtle, qualitative movement to transform the seed of an idea into an evocative and absorptive performance. The work often “addresses issues concerning technological innovation, liveness, and dimensionality as a graceful comment on the ever-increasing role of technology in dance performance.” (Dance Enthusiast). B/S P has appeared at venues including the Staller Center’s main stage, Joyce SOHO, The Flea Theater, Alvin Ailey, Cunningham, Sam Houston State University, American Dance Guild, Flushing Town Hall, and more. B/S P has collaborated with famed mathematician James Simons, music groups: Sirius String Quartet, Agua Trip, Tones From The Underground, and Ray Anderson and Band; composers: Rubin Kodheli, Gregor Huebner, and Bill Carrasco; and composers/filmmakers: Lindsey Boise, Chris Johnson, & Ginger Burden. It is of great interest to B/S P to communicate with artists across varied disciplines and engender compassion regarding the commonality of all humanity as well as appreciation for our differences.
Kyla Barkin, raised in Tempe, AZ., studied with “La Mariquilla” at the Academia de Ballet Flamenco in Granada, Spain. At the age of sixteen, she attended Arizona State University as part of the Advanced Youth Program, then received her B.A. in Dance from UCLA. She has toured internationally and taught at Wayne State University, Emma Willard, Sam Houston University, USDAN Center for Performing Arts, Taiwan, and has often assisted and re-staged the work of Brenner at universities and conservatories such as the Juilliard School, NCSA, Temple University, Adelphi, Long Island University, as well as in Russia, Indonesia, and more. She currently teaches various classes, private lessons, and workshops. Kyla has been a long time member of Janis Brenner & Dancers and Isabel Gotzkowsky and Friends. She has also danced with The Carolyn Dorfman Dance Co., The Doug Elkins Dance Company, Stefanie Nelson Dance Group, Tamar Rogoff Performance Projects, and others. Ms. Barkin is the recipient of the Jean Irwin Award for Talent, Merit, and Potential and is a Fitness Professional and a Yoga Teacher/Therapist. Her writing has been published in DANCE Magazine, she has appeared on the Ricki Lake Show’s Couples Yoga Special, was recently featured in GURHAN Magazine as well as Genetics the Song Book, and is one of the original producers of The Moveable Feast where she made her debut as a singer/songwriter in 2006. Ms. Barkin is also on the board of the Foundation for a Just Society.
Aaron Selissen, originally from Green Bay, WI., received his B.F.A. in Dance Performance from Butler University. In 2002, he joined David Hochoy’s Dance Kaleidoscope of Indianapolis. During his time with Dance Kaleidoscope, he enjoyed annual residencies at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. He also performed with Ballet Internationale, Peoria Ballet, and the Indianapolis Opera. In 2005, Mr. Selissen was invited to dance with the Martha Graham Ensemble. He later joined the Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company, Janis Brenner and Dancers with whom he still performs, Isabel Gotzkowsky and Friends, andis currently a member of the Jose Limon Dance Co. In addition, Aaron is a yoga teacher/fitness professional.
Differential Cohomology (2011) is inspired by the mathematical theory of the same name. Commissioned by James Simons, celebrated mathematician, the piece is based on a diagram of a hexagon with positions for commutative groups to sit. The “players” travel on journeys, in specific sequences, where they are inevitably “crushed to zero” upon arrival. Only select few “un-swallowed” may tiptoe back to the mysterious home plate in the center and continue another cycle of absorbing and imparting information. It takes a well-organized machine to function as this diagram during the day, but there is no accounting for what happens at night!
Sequitur or Non (2010) explores parallels between linguistics and movement/non-verbals as modes of communication and internal dialogue. This evolving work draws the mind and body into a world of surfaces and folds, revolving joints, and a place where the need to make sense of all things may or may not apply.
SH2 (2009, rev. 2010) delves fearlessly into the systemic processing of external occurrences. Responding to an unknown event, beings transition between quietly weaving limbs and twisting leaps landing in delicate balances. Teetering perhaps on an edge or paralyzed by a particular sight or sound, they peer at their own thresholds through observant, compassionate, and gratefully surrendered eyes.
Resonant Imaging (2009) is derived from multiple MRI inspired thoughts. Resonant Imaging is a journey through the surrealistic experience of the mind. It is an interactive, multi-media, structured dance improvisation based on the environment created by the film being projected onto, behind, and what seems like around the dancer. The “stream of consciousness” and free association of images in the film provide a palette for the performer to play, react, and spontaneously re-create scenarios in as literal or abstract a form as the moment elicits. “’Resonant Imaging,’ performed by Kyla Barkin, addressed issues concerning technological innovation, liveness, and dimensionality… This highly entertaining piece ultimately read as a graceful comment on the ever-increasing role of technology in dance performance.” (Dance Enthusiast)
Let It Go (2009) is an abstract piece that blends classic line with contemporary structure. The movement maintains circularity that attracts the players causing them to gravitate and revolve. There is a continuous flow of energy that the dancers ride, which binds and propels them forward. The effect of these movements and their subtle variations leaves us entranced. As “Let it Go” reflects human nature, we see the pendulum swing far, from conflict to reconciliation.
PreTense (2009). Highlighting the nature of cause and effect, PreTense addresses topics of awareness, hindsight, choice, and accountability as humans in various contexts. PreTense exists as a “flex piece” in that it purposefully evolves from time to time based on the particular performers in the cast and the venue where it is shown.
Et Tu (2008). Give an inch, but take a mile. Why do we go too far and cross the line? Why are we often so cruel to the people we are closest to? Sexy and Athletic, this duet explores the dynamic between two people as they experience occurrences of comedy, melancholy, fun, betrayal, and the tragedy of it all. (This piece was created in honor of Nick Simons).
Once (2008) is a peering in to the currently separate lives and memories of two, who once lived as one.
At Rest Relative to Aether (2008). Based on a romantic metaphor of J.C. Maxwell’s theory from the late 1870s, this male-female duet captures the essence of the intangible muse. A man, distraught with his lack of inspiration falls into himself and his sense memories of another time. We witness his journey back into life as his own artist. Using a mix of classical, contemporary, and wave-work techniques, the dancers move in an orbital pattern first individually, then combined, and back again thus exemplifying this interpretation of the coordinate system.
Hope (2008). Innocence and optimism can be a beautiful thing, but when things go wrong how does one respond? What we see here is a young person who is oblivious to life’s potentially less than ideal circumstances. With a bit of humor and a touch of sadness, he/she is repeatedly knocked down and must get back up, as doing so gracefully grows increasingly challenging.
Modern Technique and Repertory
BARKIN/SELISSEN PROJECT’s class provides a progression from the inside out. The body and mind are enlivened, using forces both internal and external to create space for dynamic shifts. There is attention placed on center, expansiveness, opposition, grounding, movement quality, floor work, athleticism, and subtlety. Combining principles from classical, modern, yoga, and various martial arts techniques, we allow room for action and reaction within a shifting environment. Playing with intention, impulse, and initiation, we explore how they cause and affect weight transfer, what exists in the space and time between, and how to maintain strength and focus through challenges. Following a warm-up for sound mind and body, students are led through a series of exercises, which incorporate vocabulary and workshop specific skills. Utilizing the senses and the energy that moves into, through, and beyond the body, individuals are encouraged to explore their own unique approach and build upon it throughout class. This class acts as a practice, a platform for crafting one’s art, and an experience to expand upon. Movement from the repertory may be incorporated in the technique class or may be offered, in fuller form, as a separate class/workshop culminating in an informal performance.
B/S P talks about the process, the work, and how to use the lessons within it to find an intelligent and healthy physical and mental approach to its entirety. The company performs, sometimes straight through, and sometimes with pausing for discussion and workshopping particular points of focus., then leaves time for Q & A and various other interactive plans based on venue.
Creating dances, using tools, and moving beyond them. Concept development, movement invention/selection, sound choices, architecture & design in dance, finding one’s own voice, editing one’s self to create the most relevant product and aligning goals/mission with process.
Integration: Techniques, The Art and Science of Performance, and the Creative Process
Here we work on understanding commonalities and differences between various techniques/forms. Often dancers are required to be versatile across projects. After being trained in multiple specific techniques then entering the professional world, it may be unclear how to integrate all approaches to best suit each moment, and bring maximum quality to each style asked during various projects. Also discussed are methods to work in a new environment or with an artist in the creation of new work, discovering your own process, allowing your process to evolve, obtaining the access to your ideal process, and adapting your process to current circumstances. Performance preparation/ “cool down”, theater etiquette, and practices to enhance focus and character embodiment are also covered.
Injury Prevention, Functional Training, and Post-Rehabilitation
Specific exercises and feedback for the recovery of a variety of injuries and/or their prevention will be introduced. Also emphasized, are meditation and other practices toward being at peace with a challenging situation and respecting the healing process. Participants are guided through programs designed for strength, endurance, coordination, agility, functionality, range of motion, and healthy systems. Exercises are given in a sequence that is appropriate for beginner through advanced levels of fitness. This class is appropriate for students as well as teachers who would like to gain knowledge in order to assist and educate their own students.
|JAN 8, 2012||Pentacle Gallery Showcase
The Theater at Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis High School
120 West 46th St (bet 6th & 7th Aves)
7:00 – 10:00 pm
Barkin/Selissen Project: 7:36 pm
|AUG 3, 2012||Jacob’s Pillow Inside/Out
|SEP 6, 2012||American Dance Guild Festival
Ailey Citigroup Theater, New York, NY
|SEP 21, 2012||Pentacle/River City Artists Independent Showcase
Performing Arts Exchange Conference
Little Haiti Cultural Center, Miami, FL
|OCT 1, 2012||Pentacle Gallery Showcase
Ailey Citigroup Theater, New York, NY
|OCT 12-14, 2012||Dance Gallery Festival
Ailey Citigroup Theater, New York, NY
|OCT 25-27 2012||SHARE 4
Dance New Amsterdam, New York, NY
|DEC 13, 2012||Women in Dance
Ailey Citigroup Theater, New York, NY
|JAN 13, 2013||Pentacle’s APAP Gallery Showcase
Ailey Studio 5B, 405 W. 55th Street @ 9th Ave., New York, NY
7:00 pm – 8:45 pm
Barkin/Selissen Project: 8:24 pm
|MAY 4, 2013||American Dance Guild Bare Bones Concert
The Construction Company, New York, New York