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Erin Drummond is Assistant Professor of Dance and Dance Program Director at Winona State University, where she teaches courses in contemporary dance practices, performance, composition, and meditation. She specializes in improvisation, mindfulness and interdisciplinary approaches. She is an active performer and choreographer based in Minneapolis, Mni Sota Makoce, and has danced with Rosy Simas Danse, Leila Awadallah, Sharon Mansur, and Robin Stiehm, among others.

Erin creates interdisciplinary artwork in places ranging from deserts and forests to the stage and continues to be interested in the body’s communicative power within the complexities of place, using movement research as a catalyst for personal, political and environmental change. Her work often explores mystery and the unknown, drawing inspiration from forces of nature.

Born in Minneapolis, Erin studied at Ballet Arts Minnesota and Zenon Dance before moving to New York to study film and religion at Columbia University. A series of significant experiences led her to change her concentration to dance. As an undergraduate student, she became interested in the body's relationship to place and capacity for ritual, especially in indigenous cultures. She studied environmental science and art at the Biosphere 2 Center in Oracle, Arizona and Pacific Island Studies in Samoa. She trained in West African Dance, Jazz, Graham technique, Limón technique, Dunham technique, and Contact Improvisation, and also studied folklore and Latin American literature. Her research was mentored by Lynn Garafola and her performance thesis, Afterwake, was mentored by the late, beloved Mary Cochran. Afterwake was chosen for presentation at the Loft into Theater (LIT) Series curated by Colleen Thomas.

 

After graduating, Erin worked as a dancer and choreographer in New York and Minneapolis, with a variety of companies and collectives including multiple projects with Rosy Simas Danse and as a guest performer for Dhamma Theatre West in Bangkok. In 2010, she joined Dancing People Company, directed by Robin Stiehm and based in Ashland, Oregon, where she danced for five years. With DPC, she performed throughout the Pacific Northwest, toured to Minneapolis and to St. Petersburg, Russia, and served as interim Artistic Director in 2016. 

In 2014, Erin received a fellowship to pursue an MFA in dance at Hollins University, in collaboration with institutions in Frankfurt, Germany. After performing in EarthBodyHOME, choreographed by Amara Tabor Smith and inspired by Ana Mendieta, she focused her research on animism in contemporary dance. Her written research was mentored by Gina Kohler, may she rest in peace and power. Her thesis performance, DEAD LIZARD WOMAN, was mentored by Leah Cox of Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company and presented at the Choreographer's Evening at the Walker Art Center in 2016. 

 

Since 2016, Erin has been a visiting and resident artist at Savanna Moon Wildlife Refuge (Pepin, WI), Dhamma Dena Meditation Center (Joshua Tree, CA), Casa Cultural La Chispa (Medellín, Colombia), and Kultur Räume Berlin. In 2018, her choreography, Xx, was featured at the American College Dance Association (ACDA) Gala Concert at University of Wisconsin-Madison. She received a grant from the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council in 2021 to develop Loon, a solo project blending poetry and movement. In 2022 she created Fault Lines, a duet for Courtney Armani and Brianna Rae Johnson that was presented at the Winona Arts Center and St. Olaf College. In 2023, she received a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board to develop her choreography into a dance film. From 2021-2023, she danced in Rosy Simas' multiyear project she who lives on the path to war.

 

Erin will join the Body Watani research lab this spring and perform in a new project by Meryl Murman curated by The Cedar Tree Project in July, 2024.

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