her body as words (New York Premiere)
Peggy Baker’s new work, her body as words (2021), is a sound and film installation that fragments and explodes notions of female identity as expressed by nine Canadian dance artists. Inspired by the 2009 translation of Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex, Baker entered a deeply collaborative process involving personal conversations with the performers. Dancing the complexities of their lived identities, these artists offer gestural renderings touching on themes of race, gender expression, sexual orientation, sexual appetite, pregnancy, miscarriage, motherhood, disability, physical labor, and aging. her body as words was filmed by Jeremy Mimnagh and features sound design by Debashis Sinha.
Peggy Baker is acclaimed as one of the most outstanding and influential contemporary dancers of her generation. Her unique abilities are the product of an education in both dance and theater, pursued initially through the drama department of the University of Alberta, with The School of Toronto Dance Theatre, and in New York at the Martha Graham School and the Herbert Berghof Studio.
Born in Edmonton in 1952, she began her professional career in Toronto in 1974, as a founding member of Dancemakers, toured internationally as a prominent member of Lar Lubovitch’s celebrated New York company throughout the 1980s, and joined Mikhail Baryshnikov and Mark Morris for the inaugural season of their White Oak Dance Project in 1990, subsequently forging important creative relationships with Paul-André Fortier (Montreal), James Kudelka (Toronto), and Doug Varone (New York) through numerous performance projects.