I am a dance and movement artist moved to understand myself, community, and world.
I move my body to oxygenate it. To soften my sternum and shift from my pelvis, repattern old neural pathways and build new ones. I dance because verbal processing is overrated, because it helps me sleep better at night, and because it returns me to myself.
I make work to scratch the itch, to spark conversations, and to honor silence. (And because I’m anti-consumerist, and I just told you I’m an artist, and that’s what we’re supposed to do.)
My creative process is research-based and collaborative. I investigate questions through a combination of improvisation, writing, conversations, and academic research and then begin the work of translation to the languages of body and metaphor. My* dancers, students, friends, family, ancestors, past teachers, students, audience members, are all co-creators in the process and the product.
*No one belongs to anyone here. But I needed a pronoun.
When I don’t have faith in myself, I have faith in this: by moving and making, we carve out spaces where we become a little more human, a little more open, and a little more compassionate towards each other.
Allyson Joy Yoder is a community-centered dance and teaching artist based in the Valley. As a performer, choreographer, facilitator, and teacher, Allyson works to ignite community dialogue and engagement. Her creative process is collaborative and research-based, grounded by practices in movement and improvisation, and driven by a desire for transformation. Allyson's work lives in shipping containers and on the Light Rail, in art museums and in her own home. Her creative work ranges from intersectional, identity-driven feminist performance, to large group dances for public spaces, to intimate improvisational works.
As a freelance teaching artist, Allyson works to expand access to meaningful dance experiences for movers across spectrums of age, physical abilities, and backgrounds. She has taught and facilitated classes and workshops at Oakwood Creative Care, the Mesa Arts Center, Phoenix Center for the Arts, the ASU Art Museum, the spark! festival, and more. In 2016, Allyson was selected by the Arizona Arts Commission as one of 11 teaching artists for the inaugural Creative Aging Teaching Artist Institute.
Allyson attended Arizona State University as a Flinn Scholar, where she studied dance technique and creative process with Liz Lerman, Mary Fitzgerald, Jessica Rajko, Karen Schupp, and guest artists Kathleen Hermesdorf & Albert Matthias. Other notable experiences include studies at the Bates Dance Festival, an internship and training at Varium Dance Center in Barcelona, Spain, and the 2016 Dance Exchange Summer Institute.
Allyson graduated with honors from A.S.U. with her B.F.A. in dance in May 2016. For three years, Allyson was on staff at [nueBOX] as a Artist Support and Development Director, where she helped to provide space, resources, and support for artists making interdisciplinary, research-based, collaborative work in the Valley. Today, she continues to partner and collaborate with other artists and organizations to create new work and expand opportunities for meaningful arts engagement in the community.