Let us introduce KC Lyphout, winner of our first ever Movers + Makers choreography intensive! Read on to learn more about KC’s dance background and read her review of the Movers + Makers choreography workshop. KC’s work was adjudicated and selected by our panel of judges after only 12.5 hours of rehearsal over 4 days’ time! Her winning choreography, “Pasture”, will be performed November 11-12 at the Orem Library Hall. Don’t miss her stunning work this November!
My name is KC Lyphout, and I’m a 23 year old choreographer from Ohio. I earned an undergraduate degree in dance last year and have been trying to find my voice as an artist since long before then. After searching for months for the right choreography-focused intensive for me, learning about the first annual Movers + Makers with Wasatch Contemporary Dance Company gave me such high hopes. After anxiously awaiting the results of my application, I was offered the amazing opportunity to participate in the intensive as a choreographer. Having now successfully completed the intensive and gained so much more than a professional commission, I can say with confidence that my experience with WCDC and Movers + Makers was nothing short of incredible.
The choreographer track was tailored perfectly to my needs as a rising dance maker with ample time for private reflection and group discussion alike. The morning classes covered a wide range of choreographic topics spanning from partnering to props to prepare us for our rehearsals in the evenings. We spent valuable hours experimenting with varied techniques for generating movement and creating unique compositions. Some of the classes that were most unexpectedly beneficial to me weren’t even classes that involved dancing. For example, musician and composer Michael Wall’s class on communicating with musicians for dance, Utah Valley University’s class on lighting and design for dance, and Katie Bruce’s presentation on dance and film all widened my horizons on topics that I had prior knowledge of but wasn’t confident in.
For me, part of the draw to Movers & Makers was the opportunity to receive professional mentorship while creating new work. My choreographic mentor for the week was esteemed BYU professor of dance Keely Song. Throughout the week Keely and I communicated about my inspiration, my process, and my approach to creating and conducting rehearsals. I am so grateful for the guidance that Keely offered, and I owe her a huge thanks for helping me problem solve in rehearsal. Keely knows what she’s talking about. Her observations and suggestions were thoughtful, genuine, and exactly what I needed to create a stronger work.
In regards to rehearsals, the cast of dancers that WCDC provided to me was more perfect than I could have dreamed. From the first rehearsal to the final performance, every dancer was committed, trusting, and down for the cause. The environment that they created for me felt so safe and it made trying new things easier. Putting together an entirely new 8 minute work in under 12 hours was daunting, but once we got into the process it seemed to flow effortlessly. It was so cool to be in a space where everyone was rooting for me and actively fighting to lift me up. It was their commitment that took the visions in my mind to the next level.
WCDC has my deepest gratitude for welcoming me into Movers + Makers. I truly cannot sing my praises high enough. It’s been overwhelming trying to navigate life post-Covid and post-undergraduate as an artist, but Movers + Makers was a safe haven for me. My spirit feels so full after this time of exploration, creation, and support, and I can’t wait to see my work hit the stage again. See you soon!
Join us for Movers + Makers in 2023! Dancers and choreographers come together to train, rehearse and perform. Choreographs compete for a commission with the company and dancers are considered for paid dance contracts with Wasatch Contemporary Dance Company for the upcoming year. Read more about it here!