Michelle Dorrance | Artist-In-Residence At Vail Dance Festival

by | Jun 5, 2018 | Promotional Video

Michelle Dorrance was the Artist-In-Residence during last summer’s Vail Dance Festival.

Every year, Vail’s Artist-In-Residence collaborates with other artists at the Festival. They perform and create choreography they might not do anywhere else. The artist is constantly creating in a way that is so impressive and amazing!

When Michelle Dorrance was Artist-In-Residence at Vail Dance Festival, she learned a Graham piece, performed multiple collaborations, and choreographed a new work for a ton of dancers. Her new piece was performed by incredible artists like Herman Cornejo, Tiler Peck, Bill Irwin, BalletX dancers, James Whiteside, Lil Buck… Michelle really went full-out – making a piece with live music and 15 performers to premiere in the Vail NOW Premieres show.

It was so fun watching some of the biggest stars of American ballet perform her choreography. (Some of them living outside their comfort zones!!)

The Artist-In-Residence is able to present new work and collaborate with other dancers.

During her time as Artist-In-Residence, Michelle also presented her own company’s show ETM: Double Down.

She collaborated with Ron Myles and Lil Buck and with Damian Woetzel, the Artistic Director of Vail Dance Festival. It was great to see the synergy between Damian and Michelle, and to see tap as a big part of the Festival.

Photo Credit: Christopher Duggan Photography

“The idea behind having an Artist-In-Residence for a Dance Festival to me is to find someone who is a catalyst, who inspires creativity, who is making new work, who is performing, who is really energizing the entire engine that is the Festival. I don’t know what else to say, except Michelle Dorrance is that.”
– Damian Woetzel, Artistic Director

Interviewing Michelle Dorrance is so much fun!

I’ve interviewed Michelle a few times at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival and Vail Dance Festival and have gotten to know her over the years.

When I was editing this video, I laughed out loud multiple times. She is a firecracker!!! So much fun to interview.

As an editor, I lucked out with Michelle, because when I watched my footage, I had so many options and angles to consider – I really had to narrow it down in the editing room!!

I hope this film tells a side of Vail Dance Festival that people may not know.

It can show how much is actually created and premiered at the Festival each summer.

Plus, a story like this might also be used to help to promote Michelle Dorrance’s upcoming collaboration with American Ballet Theatre, coming up during the Festival this year!! We are so excited to be at Vail Dance Festival soon!!!

Nel Shelby is Owner & Filmmaker for Nel Shelby Productions, her New York City-based company dedicated to dance videography and editing. Nel shares her mission to preserve and promote the art of dance with her husband, Christopher Duggan, a dance and wedding photographer. They collaborate on projects with dance companies of worldwide renown, up-and-coming choreographers, dance educators, dance schools and more. Nel is Video Producer at Jacob’s Pillow and Vail Dance Festival and is also the proud Director and Producer of PS DANCE! — a New York Emmy-nominated documentary about dance education in NYC’s public schools.