Dance into the Spring Performance Series

The Department of Theatre and Dance is proud to present the dance program’s Spring Studio Series at Harper Joy Theatre’s black box for three different experimental performances by Kristopher K.Q. Pourzal (New York), Anna Martine Whitehead (Chicago), and Heather Kravas (Seattle) on April 5th, 6th, and 7th at 8 p.m.  Whitman students kick off each performance with material developed in workshops with the artists that week, with Whitman Professors and Walla Walla community members Nina Lerman, Lisa Uddin, and Tia Kramer each leading one of three distinct post-performance discussions. Professor of Dance Peter de Grasse, organizer of the program, invites all to attend these performances as they culminate an exciting week of collaborative creation, experimental performance, and critical dialogue.

If you’d like to join one of the workshops that will take place the week of the performance, please send a message to We look forward to your participation.

Kristopher K.Q. Pourzal 
two lines barely touching do not make a ghost but do
make a passage (o, but i have such lines inside of me)

Thursday April 5 at 8:00 p.m.
Freimann Studio Theatre (black box)
Discussion led by Nina Lerman

two lines barely touching… is an evening-length solo performance in which
movement, live sound, and objects are continually rearranged and displaced;
material loops and suspends, recklessly-carefully. Pourzal conjures the castrato
—a male singer of the operatic tradition who has been castrated before puberty
to preserve his high singing voice—to probe the shaping of bodies by and for
labor and value. As he wrest(le)s this brutal history, his own severed selves
are thrown into relief.

Kristopher K.Q. Pourzal, born and raised outside of Washington
DC, is a performer/performance-maker living in Brooklyn, NY.
He uses movement, food/stuff, text, and song to make solo works
that feverishly reconcile his mind-body as a sculpture of socio-political
conditioning and queer potential. Fundamentally, he is interested in
what gets concealed in the appearances of things, from the macro
(e.g. capitalism) to the micro (e.g. a lemon) and the slippage between.
His work has been presented and/or commissioned by Danspace Project,
Gibney Dance, Movement Research at Judson Church, Roulette Intermedium,
AUNTS, Center for Performance Research, Dixon Place, and Brooklyn
Arts Exchange. Kristopher has also worked for other artists including
Simone Aughterlony, Catherine Galasso, K.J. Holmes, Aaron Landsman,
Jeff McMahon, Britta Joy Peterson, Will Rawls, Jen Rosenblit, and Eileen
Standley. He is a 2016-2018 Movement Research Artist-in-Residence.
Additionally, Kristopher holds an MFA in Dance from Arizona State University.


Anna Martine Whitehead
Notes on Territory
Performance on Friday April 6 at 8 p.m.
Freimann Studio Theatre (black box)
Discussion led by Lisa Uddin

Notes on Territory is a solo movement performance within the frame of a
PowerPoint presentation. Using video, sound installation, text and language-play,
in addition to set choreography and improvised movement, Notes on Territory
makes connections between gothic cathedrals, colonial fortresses, U.S. public
housing, and prisons.

Anna Martine Whitehead is a transdisciplinary artist interested in a body’s
presence before its arrival. They have been presented by venues across North
America and Europe, and contributed significantly to projects by Onye Ozuzu,
Jefferson Pinder, taisha paggett, Every house has a door, Keith Hennessy, and
Julien Prévieux, among others. Martine has written for Art21 Magazine, C
Magazine, Art Practical, and contributed chapters to a range of publications
including Meanings and Makings of Queer Dance (Oxford, 2017).
She is a recent grant recipient of the Foundation for Contemporary Arts and the
author of TREASURE | My Black Rupture (Thread Makes Blanket, 2016). They
teach, make, and build in Chicago. Find out more at


Heather Kravas
one solid object
Performance on Saturday April 7 at 8:00 p.m.
Freimann Studio Theatre (black box)
Discussion led by Tia Kramer

Punk, feminist, precise and extreme, one solid object is a choreographic
abstraction grappling with the messy and incontrollable inevitability of human emotion.  Utilizing borrowed movements, the dance is reduced to rhythm and essence then rebuilt through strict and sloppy repetitions.
Making room for a presence of failure, physical vulnerability tangles with
formal obsessions to embrace accidents, boredom, exhaustion and exuberance.

Heather Kravas is a choreographer and performing artist. Since 1995, she has
investigated choreographic, improvisation and collaborative practices in
contemporary dance to explore the limits of choreography as a form and her
abilities as an artist. Combining recognizable traditions, tasks and somatic
practices her dances grapple with structural idealism and uncontainable
emotions. In a renunciation of the spectacular, she strives to illuminate
actions such as labor, listening, concentration, failure and presence.
Kravas grew up in Pullman, Washington, where, under the tutelage of Deirdre
Wilson, she studied classical ballet and the experimental theater theories of
Jerzy Grotowski. Significant to her understanding of dance as a relevant and
complex form are the many artists/teachers/colleagues she has been privileged
to work with/for: Antonija Livingstone, DD Dorvillier, Dayna Hanson, Stephanie
Skura, Marina Abramavic, Okkyung Lee, Yvonne Meier among many.
Ms. Kravas has received support from Creative Capital, the Doris Duke Impact
Award, Foundation for Contemporary Art, MAP Fund, National Performance
Network, Seattle Arts Commission, 4 Culture, f.u.s.e.d, Bossack-Heilbron
Foundation, the Yard and Pact-Zollverein. Her choreography has been
presented at venues including American Realness, Base, Chez Bushwick, The
Chocolate Factory, Dance Theater Workshop, Danspace Project @ St.Mark’s
Church, Fusebox Festival, The Kitchen, Movement Research @ Judson Church,
On the Boards, Performance Space 122, Tonic and Velocity Dance Center as well
as internationally.

Heather currently lives in Seattle, Washington with her family.