Skip to main content Skip to secondary navigation
Scene in Action performance. Photo by Nicholas Salazar, '15.

Scene in Action: Dance, Fashion and Visual Art as Performance

Main content start

Course Description

A dancer jumps in the air

This course is a choreographic workshop and performance seminar, inspired by the abstract expressionist art found in the Anderson Collection at Stanford set to open in fall 2014, and the Cantor exhibit of Robert Frank’s photography on view also in fall 2014. The period between the 1950’s and early 1960s was a rich time for painting, dance, conceptual and interdisciplinary art movements. Through this course we will consider how contemporary dancers/performers might express these ideas as a direct response the impulses seen and felt in the art of this period.  We will create a site-specific dance performance and runway show throughout the exhibition spaces, in celebration of the opening of the Anderson Collection building at Stanford.

Students will be encouraged to identify and investigate similar currents in contemporary dance, music, fashion and visual art. The goal would be to integrate the historical and the contemporary into the choreography and performance. Students should be prepared to present, justify and challenge what they see as viable artistic content from their contemporary world of dance, fashion, art and music.

The course will include studio practice in the galleries, guest lectures with Stanford faculty, curatorial staff, and outside experts in fashion and music, as well as field trips to San Francisco.  Culminating performances will be presented during the fall quarter, at the program showcase, in collaboration with the Robert Frank exhibition at Cantor Arts Center and coinciding with the grand opening of the Anderson Collection. 

As of May 1, we will be accepting applications for this course on a rolling basis.

Apply Now

Instructor Bio

Aleta Hayes

Aleta Hayes is a contemporary dancer, choreographer, performer, and teacher. Before her appointment at Stanford, Ms. Hayes taught for eight years at Princeton University in the Program in Theater and Dance and the Program in African American Studies. While at Princeton, Ms. Hayes developed pedagogically innovative courses that combined cultural and performance history, theory, and performance. She has also taught at Wesleyan University, Swarthmore College, and Rutgers University. Ms. Hayes holds an M.F.A. in Dance and Choreography from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and a B.A., with Departmental Honors, in Drama, Dance and the Visual Arts from Stanford University (1991). In 2009 Hayes founded the Chocolate Heads Movement Band --an interdisciplinary, collaborative  performance troupe that has been presented at Stanford Ted X, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in S.F. and at the inaugural season of the Bing Concert Hall.

More to Explore

View Highlights Reel from the Being Scene performance