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The Ruby is a catalyst for creativity and a home for making art at Duke.
Date & Time
March 26, 2021 at 12:00 pm1:00 pm
Free; no RSVP required. Everyone welcome. Join Event on Vimeo!

Courtney Liu ‘13, Broadway dancer and member of the inaugural cohort of Duke’s MFA in Dance, will present “SylphSense: Flow States, Body Image, and Ballet,” her choreographic and pedagogical masters research on flow states and their relation to body image and eating disturbances.  Liu will share how her dance instruction and choreographic inquiry have worked in tandem to uncover unexpected revelations. This presentation is ideal for dancers, artists, and researchers who are interested in flow states, body image, pedagogy, and how the creative process can inspire and influence other forms of academic inquiry. The program includes Liu’s research, excerpts from her performance for this work, and, in closing, a brief Q & A.

“As a teacher, I am striving to use language that is focusing on function rather than aesthetic. So instead of talking about a certain body part—like the stomach or thighs—I talk about the function behind the lifting up off the legs, or the function behind engaging the stomach.”—Courtney Liu quoted in “Real Talk About How Body Dysmorphia Affects Dancers,” Dance Spirit Magazine

Join program on Vimeo, no advance registration required.

About Courtney Liu

Courtney Liu is a performer, dance teacher, choreographer, and researcher who is currently pursuing her MFA at Duke University (expected graduation 2021). She has taught dance nationally and internationally for the past 15 years and has choreographed a variety of dance performances and films. In addition to working with university students, conservatory students, pre-professional dancers, and recreational students, Liu has facilitated dance experiences for children exposed to domestic violence, underserved children across the US, students from her grandfather’s hometown in Zhuhai, China, Special Olympics team members, and refugee students in New York and Durham. Courtney’s performance credits include the Phantom of the Opera Broadway Cast (Assistant Dance Captain, Meg u/s, Swing, Ensemble), the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake, Peridance Contemporary Dance Company, and the Cincinnati Ballet.

About In Coversation

This free online public conversation series is presented by Duke Arts and Duke Performances (Fridays at Noon, Jan 29 through April 16). Featuring faculty-invited visiting artists and artists from Duke Performances virtual Spring 2021 season.

Before life moved onto virtual platforms like Zoom, Duke Arts and Duke Performances hosted casual artist talks in Duke’s Rubenstein Arts Center and in a variety of Durham community venues like the Pinhook and Cocoa Cinnamon. We miss these opportunities to connect with our audiences and artists, and we hope you’ll join us for this new venture.


Featured photo by Chris Hildreth for Duke Magazine‘s story: “Exploring the Choreography of Everyday Life.”

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