ROCKIN’ WOMEN: THE ARTISTS


Below is the information for those performing in the 2nd Annual Women Rock! event October 21st 2010.

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Michele de la Reza with Attack Theatre

Michele de la Reza is co-founder and Artistic Director of Attack Theatre, a company whose work has been presented throughout the US, Europe and Asia for over fifteen years.  Known for their “audacious athleticism” (Dance Magazine), original live music and multimedia arts performance, Michele and partner Peter Kope have choreographed works for the Avignon Festival, the 7th Next Wave Dance Festival (Japan), Indonesia Arts Festival, Monaco Danses Forum, the Spoleto Festival, the Broadway production of Squonk and over two dozen operas and symphonies worldwide.   Fusing choreography and composition with visual arts, Michele and Peter created “Some Assembly Required” in which the audience is a collaborator in the creative process. First commissioned 15 years ago by Carnegie Museum of Art, this program has been presented in Museé Oceanographique (Monaco), Ross Art Museum (Ohio), Blaffer Gallery (Houston), The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art (New York), Fairmont State University (West Virginia), Avignon Festival (France) and The Frick Museum, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and Andy Warhol Museum (Pittsburgh).
Attack Theatre has been named “Best Dance Performance and Company” for multiple years by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Pittsburgh City Paper; and was the recipient of New England Foundation for the Art’s “National Dance Project Award” in 2006-07 for their dance/rock opera “Games of Steel”.  Michele and Peter are recipients of the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts fellowship award, the Harry Schwalb Excellence in the Arts Award and the Hardie Award as Arts Educator of the Year. In addition to extensive performing and touring, Attack Theatre also conducts residencies in contemporary dance, creative movement and aesthetic education in universities, primary and secondary schools, arts festivals and community centers. The company’s outreach programs focus on demystifying the artistic process and building community with artists and artists alike.
Michele de la Reza holds a BFA from the Juilliard School and a Masters of Education from the University of Pittsburgh. She is on faculty at Carnegie Mellon University in the School of Music, where Attack Theatre is the company-in-residence. Trained at the Lincoln Center Institute, she has conducted aesthetic education workshops for teachers, artists and students for over a decade. Michele has taught master classes and conducted residencies at universities throughout the United States and Europe, and at hundreds of primary and secondary schools. Michele is an active board member of Arts Education Collaborative, The New Hazlett Theater, and the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council.
www.attacktheatre.com

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Christina Springer

Christina Springer is a text artist who uses poetry, dance, theatre, film and other visual expressions.    As an Outreach Artist for the Historic Royal Palaces, she delivered  four projects with youth: “Rapping On Walls,” “Black Birds & Bars,” “Bling & Beheadings”  at the Tower Of London and “Dragon Drap D’Or” at Hampton Court Palace.  She has also taught creative writing at CityLit College and The University Of East London. Recent dance-theatre scripts include: “Living Ancestry” produced by Umoja African Arts Company and “The Splooge Factory” produced by Composer’s Collaborative.   Cave Canem helped her hone her voices.  Poems have appeared in: “Gathering Ground: A Cave Canem Reader,” “Saints Of Hysteria,” “The Complete Idiots Guide To Slam Poetry CD,” Torch Literary Journal, Janus Head, Femspec, and Callaloo.  As a performance poet and longest reigning Pittsburgh Poetry Slam Champion, she coached the Pittsburgh Poetry Slam Team to the semi-finals at the National Poetry Slam in 2001.

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Laurie Klatscher

Laurie Klatscher has lived and worked in Pittsburgh for the past 19 years.   Most recently she performed with Unseam’d Shakespeare in “Mad Honey” and at City Theatre in “Shooting Star”.  Last fall she played the Old Lady in Quantum Theatre’s “Candide”.  Laurie has also performed with The Pittsburgh Opera, Playhouse REP, PICT and the Public.  NY credits include productions at Primary Stages, La MaMa ETC, and York Theatre.  She was a contract player on “The Doctors” opposite Alec Baldwin and recently did the TV pilot “Munhall” with George Wendt and the comedy film “If It Ain’t Broke, Break It” with Richard Kind.  She is married to Gregory Lehane and mother of Nicholas.

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Tammy Ryan

Tammy Ryan’s award winning plays have been developed, commissioned and produced across the country.  She has received support from the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council, The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, The Heinz Endowment, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the Sprout Fund.  Currently Ryan is working on a commission for International Culture Lab, entitled LINDSEY’S OYSTER to be produced at The Kitchen in Ithaca, NY, Irondale Ensemble in Brooklyn, NY and garagistanbul, in Istanbul in 2011.   Ryan is a Dramatists Guild representative for the Pittsburgh region and often teaches playwriting at Point Park University.

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Kenia Ashby

Born in the exotic city of Rio De Janeiro, KENIA is one of the most excitingly unique performers you can hear today.   Her deep tone and excellent choice of repertoire is a sure sign of expertise.  Kenia’s voice has an infectious charm and persuasive whisper that takes more power in her native Portuguese but it’s equally evocative in English.  She single handedly describes the essence of Brazilian Jazz.  Kenia’s captivating blend of venerable choro and samba and bossa nova captivates audiences around the world. Kenia has been noted as one of the most popular and successful US based Brazilian musicians since the heyday of Sergio Mendes and Brazil 66’.

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Marci Woodruff

Marci has directed over 200 professional and academic productions in the United States, Europe and Japan.  She is the Founder and former Producing Director of THE PUBLIC THEATRE OF KENTUCKY, a professional Equity company now in it’s 23rd season.  Woodruff lives, very proudly, in Pittsburgh and works as a professional director, acting coach and grant writer.

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Phat Man Dee

Photo Credit : Renee Rosensteel

Phat Man Dee’s most recent project,  “How to Survive the Apocalypse, a Burning Opera” sold out a month long run at San Francisco’s Teatro Zinzanni. She’s also appeared with Foxy Moxy’s Cabaret Risque, The Boiler Bar Stage at the Maker’s Faire in San Matteo, CA, The Neverwas Haul Exposition Stage in the Black Rock Desert, the lovely LA River, The Madagascar Institute of Brooklyn, NY, Alex Skolnick, Zafira Dance Company, Carolina Loyola-Garcia, Candye Kane, the Goddess Perlman’s Nice Jewish Girls Gone Bad, the Fat Bottomed Girls Burlesque Review, Chicken John’s Circus Ridiculous, Wolgemut, Jazz Mandolin Project, the Bindlestiff Family Roadshow, The Bull Seal! Collective, SEEMEN, the Flaming Lotus Girls and Heavy Pedal Cyclecide. She is currently raising funds to complete her third cd and dvd project featuring her own original compositions as well as new jazz compositions by Pittsburgh based musicians. Her first cd “Life Just Goes On” and her second “Torch of Blue” (produced by Tony DePaolis) are available on CD Baby and iTunes. She also sings on the original cast album of How to Survive the Apocalyse, a Burning Opera which should be released in 2011.

http://www.phatmandee.com

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Maria Eugenia “Geña” Nieves Escoriaza

Photo Credit: Aaron Arthur Tyger

Geña hails from Quebradillas, Puerto Rico where she was the lead singer for “Cannabix” and “Doppleganger”. She moved to the mainland in 1997, bringing her music with her. Having grown up with a fully musical family it was not hard for Geña to achieve a full scholarship to attend a theater arts program at the Lee Strasberg Theater Institute in New York City. While in the Big Apple, Geña was honored to sing on the bulk of the soundtrack for the film “The Believer”, musically directed by Joel Diamond. She recently graduated with amusic major from the University of Pittsburgh in spring of 2009. She is currently the music director and singer of a Puerto Rican rebel roots and riot salsa band called Machete Kisumontao. You may also catch her singing lead for America’s Latin Orchestra.  She duets regularly with Carlos Peña, their project is called “Geña y Peña” and they perform boleros corta-venas all over Pittsburgh. Her recordings with Tuff Sound Recording Studio and collaborations with DJ Soy Sos in the documentary film “New Muslim Cool”, led her to sing along El Mujahideen Team on one of the songs in the film’s soundtrack.  Currently she is busy composing new music and hoping to record her debut album. Keep your eyes and ears peeled for more from this fiery  and inspiring singer in the genres of Jazz, Latin Jazz, Salsa, Bomba,  Plena, Rumba, Cha-Cha, Boleros, Hip-Hop, Techno, Rock and more……To keep up with her activities find her online at http://www.facebook.com/MacheteKisumontao

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