SALT HORSE (Seattle/NYC) is a dance, sound, visual-theater performance company created by dancers Beth Graczyk and Corrie Befort and musicians Angelina Baldoz and Jason E Anderson. Salt Horse creates visually rich, sensation-based works that illuminate the quiet, unseen, or hidden aspects of nature and the human experience. The company members rigorously merge improvisation and composition to create arresting narratives that weave between the literal and the abstract. Read more about our approach below.
Salt Horse was formed through a series of residencies and performances in Japan and Seattle between 2005 and 2008. Together they have created four-evening length works: This Was A Cliff (2008), Man On The Beach (2010), Titan Arum (2011), and Color Field (2014). In addition, they have been commissioned to make work through Cornish College of the Arts, Velocity Dance Center, Northwest Film Forum and most recently through the City of Seattle. Funders include Artist Trust, 4 Culture, Washington State Arts Commission, The National Endowment for the Arts and the SCUBA national touring network.
“Salt Horse has an amazingly raw stage presence and vulnerability that is etched with virtuosic articulation.” (Sean Ryan, OTB)
Primary Salt Horse collaborators:
Angelina Baldoz is a sound artist whose main instruments are electric bass, trumpet and vocals. She has performed internationally collaborating for the last 20 years in the Northwest with many artists, including Deborah Hay, Lori Goldston, Ellen Fullman. Angelina has scored numerous dance works and is the composer for the movement/sound company Salt Horse. She has worked extensively inside of the improvised music community as well as the contemporary dance scene in Seattle, with the trumpet, and since picking up the electric bass, she has studied with the legendary Carol Kaye and has toured through Europe and America with the visionary rock band Earth. She is currently the bassist for Seattle blues band Katahoula. For more visit: myspace.com/angelinabaldozmusic
Beth Graczyk (NYC/Seattle) is a dance artist who works as an improviser, dancer, choreographer, and biochemist. Since 2001, Graczyk has performed throughout the states including New York, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Portland, and Seattle and internationally in Japan, Ecuador and France. In addition to Salt Horse, Beth is choreographing The Withing Project (Seattle premiere fall 2015), an integrative science and art performance project with doctor/musician Hope Wechkin, neuroscientist Leanna Standish and director Cathy Madden. Beth recently collaborated on the performance piece Cacophony for 8 Players with Torben Ulrich and Angelina Baldoz. (Winter 2014) Through her collaborative work she has received funding from Artist Trust, 4 Culture, OAC, Washington State Arts Commission, and The National Endowment for the Arts. As a performer, Beth danced for Mark Haim (2009-2014), Scott Powell Performance (2004-2010), with San Francisco-based director Sara Shelton Mann and now with New York-based Raja Feather Kelly. Graczyk is also a Research Specialist at Rockefeller University. She has seven science publications in the field of mitosis, including a first author paper in Analytical Biochemistry. cacophonyfor8players.com + bethgraczyk.com
Corrie Befort is a dancer, choreographer, designer and filmmaker whose collaborative performance works have been presented and commissioned nationally and in Japan and Belgium. She builds movement-inspired, physically-activated visual art and effects, scenography and costuming within collaborative contexts. Her collaborators include Salt Horse, LIMITS (Jason E Anderson), Cherdonna/Jody Keuhner, Mark Haim, artists working with Deborah Hay solos (Shannon Stewart, Mary Margaret Moore), and with composer Tom Baker in iET+I Lab. Her award-winning dance films have screened internationally since 2002. She teaches filmmaking at Cornish College and through Seattle Youth Dance Collective. Corrie teaches dance classes for people with Parkinson’s Disease, children's Autism Movement Therapy and through Seattle’s Path with Art program for adults in recovery from homelessness and other trauma. Corrie received a danceWEB scholarship to Vienna's ImPulsTanz Festival and a choreographic residency at the Rosas/P.A.R.T.S.. She has danced for Scott/Powell Performance, Sheri Cohen and in Japan with Natsuko Tezuka. In the past year Corrie studied with Companie Marie Chouinard (Montreal), in SFDI with Eric Beauchesne (Kid Pivot) and Michael Schumacher (Ballet Frankfurt), and worked as a back-country chef in the High Sierra Nevadas. cBefort.com + limts.com
Jason E Anderson is a Seattle-based artist whose work includes performance, recorded works, video, installation, and music for dance. Emerging from the traditions of experimental music and sound art, his work employs conceptual and intuitive methods of investigating time and memory. He creates sound using synthesis, acoustic recordings, programming and text. Anderson performs and records music under his own name and as LIMITS. He works collaboratively with Matt Carlson and Jamie Potter. He has toured both coasts of the US and Japan, performing over 170 shows in the past ten years, while producing performance events in the Pacific Northwest and publishing the work of his contemporaries on his experimental record labels Gift Tapes and DRAFT, which include 63 releases to date. Anderson's recorded work can be found on these labels, as well as Locust, Digitalis, Aguirre (Belgium), SicSic (Germany), Börft (Sweden) and many others. pathoftheelk.com
More on our approach:
Salt Horse concocts pieces that oscillate between the dark and strange and the beautiful and poetic, always infused with a twist of humor. While their critically acclaimed stage and video effects are carefully constructed to disrupt the audience's perceptions, their richly layered sound and detailed, full-bodied dancing invite imaginative engagement.
Befort and Graczyk’s choreography continually oscillates the audience’s visual attention from expansive, full-body textures and complex spatial patterning to small, detailed and evocative gestures. Some of Seattle's most distinctive performers have been cast in larger work. The choreography emerges from image or scenario based improvisational structures that require the creation of very specific physicalities. For example: “You have birds in your head” or “the room is disintegrating.”
Baldoz's music, created simultaneously with the choreography, scores all the physical images. Played live, Baldoz’s music spans highly structured melodic song, electronic textures, crashing of tin pans and water sounds to create a diverse sonic topography.
Salt Horse often employs scenic "magic tricks" in their works. These arise from a desire to disrupt the audience's expectations in a way that invites them to question how they are perceiving what they are experiencing. It is a tool to open up the audience's imagination, and empower them to make choices in how they interpret the work.
Salt Horse was first created through an intense period of travel and exchange between Japan and Seattle. They intentionally sought the heightened awareness that displacement fosters as the source from which Salt Horse would emerge.
Salt Horse receives funding from: Artist Trust, 4 Culture, Washington State Arts Commission, The National Endowment for the Arts and the SCUBA national touring network.