Rebecca Stenn, dancer, choreographer, educator, writer, founded Rebecca Stenn Company in 1996. The company has since performed to critical acclaim and sold out houses in over 50 cities including such venues as The Copenhagen Festival, The Edinburgh Festival, The Joyce Theater, BAM Fisher, The Kitchen, Danspace Project, New York Live Arts, Joyce SoHo, Symphony Space, Dance New Amsterdam, La MaMa ETC and Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival among many others. The company has received support from the National Endowment for the Arts, The New York State Council for the Arts, The Joyce Theater Foundation, and the American Music Center and has been hailed in The New York Times as a company with “Wit, concision and gutsy passion…a collective force.” Recent performances include a return to the Edinburgh Festival, The Joyce Theater Family Matinee series, and solo performances at the Rubin Museum.
As a principal dancer with MOMIX from 1989 to 1996, Stenn performed in over 30 countries and throughout the U.S. and appeared as a featured performer in films for Italian, Spanish and French television. Also with Momix, Stenn assisted in the choreography of and performed as a principal dancer in Lina Wertmuller’s production of Carmen at the Munich Stats Opera, was a featured performer in the first ever 3D Imax film, Imagine, and assisted in the choreography of the Emmy Award Winning PBS Special, Pictures at and Exhibition. Stenn is a founding member of Pilobolus Too with whom she toured throughout the world from 1996 to 2002, creating and performing numerous works for the repertoire and a piece for the Radio City Rockettes. Stenn has been a contributing editor at Dancemagazine and has published work in the International Journal of Dance and the Brooklyn Rail. She has been the Choreographic Mentor for the National Young Arts Foundation in Miami and with them has choreographed numerous performances presented at the Kennedy Center. Stenn is currently on faculty at The New School and Princeton University and is Choreographer-in-Residence at Dartmouth College. She has enjoyed Artist in Residencies at Barnard College, Manhattanville College, Stockton College, Montclair State University (New Works Award), Univerisity of Wisconsin (Alumni Award), Keene State College and Lafayette College among others. Stenn most recently choreographed the new multi-media opera Cracked Orlando at the Juilliard School and premiered a new duet at BAM Fisher, and is currently making a new evening length work for Rebecca Stenn Company, to be premiered June 2018 at the Gowanus Loft. Stenn holds a BFA from The Juilliard School and MFA from The University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. She is the proud mother of Jonah and Elie Weissman.
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Fran Kirmser has worked as a consultant and dance producer with artists and arts organizations for 20 years and has facilitated the work of hundreds of artists to stage. She began her professional career at the age of 14 as a dancer. After a career-ending injury, she started working on the other side of the stage. In 1997, she founded Fran Kirmser LLC, one of the first consulting companies dedicated to fundraising and promotion efforts for the emerging artist. Past and present consulting clients include Francesca Harper, Lisa Giobbi Movement Theater, Shen Wei Dance Arts at Lincoln Center Festival, Pascal Rioult Dance Theater at The Joyce Theater, Lucinda Childs Dance Company at BAM, Helen Simoneau Danse at BAM/Fisher, Doug Varone and Dancers, Darrah Carr, and Jessica Chen. In 2002, she launched The Biography Project, a series of biographical plays that tell the stories of artists in an effort to recognize their voices, better archive their creations, and explore their influence on culture. The first was Isadora …No Apologies about American dance icon and feminist Isadora Duncan, choreographed by Lori Belilove.
On Broadway, Kirmser co-produced August Wilson’s Radio Golf and earned a 2009 Tony Award for Best Musical Revival, Hair, choreographed by Carol Armitage. In 2008, off the heels of the financial crisis, Kirmser conceived a sports series for stage to explore leadership, competition, teamwork, drive and resilience. Developing first Lombardi, based on the life of the iconic leader and renowned football coach Vince Lombardi, starring Dan Lauria and Judith Light. Produced by Kirmser/Ponturo Group and in association with the National Football League, Lombardi opened in 2010 and was the longest running play of the 2010-2011 Season where it brought an estimated 146,000 new patrons to the theater for the first time.
Additional Broadway credits include Magic/Bird, Bronx Bombers, Glengarry Glen Ross, and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? which earned the 2013 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play. Fran serves as Executive Producer of the feature film Lombardi, based on the Broadway play and produced by Legendary Pictures, and the feature film Louis Vs. Schmeling.
She has served on funding panels in the fine and performing arts such as New York Foundation for the Arts and has taught at Columbia University, The New School, Fordham, and colleges across the country as well as Commercial Theater Institute and The Field where she sits on the Advisory Board. Fran serves as a 2016 Tony Voter and is a member of the Broadway League. Having started out her performing arts career as a young professional dancer and self- produced choreographer, her passion is teaching self-producing and fundraising to emerging artists and helping them to realize their projects to stage!
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