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Breegan Kearney - Carving Out a Place in the Dance World

Breegan Kearney - Carving Out a Place in the Dance World

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Breegan Kearney has been through the New York City run- around and has come out with this conclusion: doing her own thing is much more satisfying than subscribing to someone else's vision.

The youngest of three children and the only girl, as a child Kearney constantly found herself in the role of little sister. Growing up in a warm and welcoming Midwestern family, her parents would often be fostering homeless children; she quickly grew comfortable making friends with strangers. Kearney's relationship with her brothers and with the various people constantly in and out of her childhood home, would later have a strong impact on her choreography.

As a child, Kearney was always dancing- around the house, at the grocery store, for hours and hours at family weddings... Her parents saw an article about a dance school in her small town Michigan newspaper and decided to enroll her in dance lessons. Her first dance classes were held in a working factory. Kearney's passion for dance remained steadfast, and she went on to attend the Interlochen Arts Academy (a private boarding school for dance), followed by the prestigious Conservatory of Dance at SUNY Purchase.

Kearney’s four years at SUNY Purchase really helped broaden her range of capability as a dancer and choreographer. Before coming to Purchase her training was mostly in ballet, but while in the Conservatory she was exposed to a wide variety of dance forms and influences. It was also at Purchase that Kearney started to choreograph more seriously.

With top notch conservatory training and lots of great connections, Kearney graduated in 2010 hopeful of fulfilling her life dream of making a career out of dance. However, she soon realized that NYC was a greater beast than she had anticipated. After participating in hundreds of auditions and countless uninspiring projects, Kearney came to the realization that she needed to take her dance career into her own hands in order to find artistic fulfillment.

"I realized that I was auditioning for a lot of projects that I wasn't actually interested in, just because I wanted a paying dance job. I think that my lack of enthusiasm showed at the auditions."

This fall was an important land mark for Kearney in her creative development. In October she and two other bright young choreographers produced a full length show of their work at Chen Arts Center in Manhattan. Sharing her creative vision with the world re-inspired her to continue the fight to make and share art in this difficult city.

In general, Kearney's work can be described as clever, quirky and humorous. She is inspired by story-telling, science-fiction books, music and comedy television, among other things.

The piece she will be presenting for "For Locals by Locals" is a departure from her usual light-hearted creative process. In making this piece Kearney hoped to expand her capacity as a choreographer and push herself to explore more emotional content. The piece, entitled “Seamus Died Later,” is an exploration of suicide.

"I was all of a sudden getting infiltrated with information about suicide, that I didn't seek out- podcasts, news stories, etc. It was actually kind of overwhelming,” says Kearney. “It seemed like some sort of sign."

Seamus Died Later" is a rare opportunity to experience a more vulnerable side of Kearney’s personality. She is excited to share such an intimate piece with the Crown Heights community. Come check it out, tonight at 830pm!

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Alex Wintz - embracing variety and creating transformative music

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