Movement Makers:

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Paige Fraser

Paige Fraser was named by Dance Magazine as one of the “25 to Watch” for 2017. Fraser is a 2016 Princess Grace Foundation Dance Fellowship awardee. She was a scholarship student at ABT, DTH, Complexions, Jacobs Pillow, and Juilliard summer intensives. Fraser attended Dominican University/Alonzo King's Lines Ballet and has a BFA cum laude from Fordham University/Alvin Ailey. Fraser danced with Ailey II in 2011-2013. She is a founding dancer of Visceral Dance Chicago, currently in her fourth season. Fraser performed in Beyoncé's "Bow Down" 2013 tour opener and on an episode of Empire. She has been featured in Dance Magazine,, Essence, and Lucky.

Anita Gonzalez & Joel Valentín-Martínez

Anita Gonzalez is a director, writer, and head of the Global Theatre and Ethnic Studies minor at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Gonzalez’ is the editor of Black Performance Theory, (Duke University Press, 2014).  Gonzalez is also a director and writer who has staged dozens of productions. Current projects include the musical Ybor City, about Cuban cigar rollers, and the musical Ayanna Kelly, about Black and Irish cultural exchange. Her directing and choreography has appeared on PBS television, HereArts, Tribeca Performing Arts Center, and other venues. She has been in residency at Rockefeller’s Bellagio Center and completed three Senior Scholar Fulbright grants. Gonzalez earned her PhD in Theater/Performance Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.


Joel Valentín-Martínez trained at American Conservatory Theater, Alonzo King's LINES Ballet, Rosa Montoya's Bailes Flamencos, Oakland's Dimensions Dance Theatre, and San Francisco State University. He was a member of Tony Award winning Garth Fagan Dance and toured with the troupe throughout the United States and internationally. His choreography has been commissioned by Luna Negra Dance Theater, premiering at the Harris Theater in Chicago.  Valentín-Martínez has also choreographed for the Steppenwolf Theatre, the Joel Hall Dancers and for John Jota Leaños' multi-media performance Imperial Silence: Una Ópera Muerta, performed at El Museo del Barrio in New York City, California, and at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. He is director of the dance program at Northwestern University. Valentín-Martínez earned a BA in Dance Studies from the State University of New York and an MFA in Dance from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. 


J'Sun Howard

J’Sun Howard has presented his choreography in multiple venues around Chicago including Links Hall, Northwestern University, Sonotheque, Lincoln Square Theatre, Insight Arts/Center for New Possibilities, and Rumble Arts. His work has also been presented at Patrick’s Cabaret (Minneapolis, MN). Howard has performed the choreography of Darrell Jones, Asimina Chremos, and Paige Cunningham, among others. Howard was a 2014 Chicago Dancemakers Forum Lab Artist, co-sponsored by High Concept Labs. He has also held a LinkUp Residency at Links Hall, and is currently in residence with the City of Chicago’s DCASE. Howard’s collaborative duet performance, Utopic Monster Theory, with poet Jennifer Karmin, is documented in the first annual Emergency Index  (Ugly Ducking Presse, 2011) and appeared in the biannual IN>Time Performance Festival. Howard’s writing has appeared in many forums including Chicago IRL, Inkwell, Danspace’s Constellations and Influences, and Storyglossia.


Joshua Kent

Joshua Kent is an interdisciplinary artist working in live performance, writing, and sculpture. His/their practice explores poetics of the commonplace and material manifestations of the sublime. Kent received a BA from the performance department of The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and was a Presidential Merit Scholar. Kent has had artist residencies at Links Hall and ACRE. Kent’s work has been presented in Rapid Pulse International Performance Festival, EXPO Chicago, as a special feature for Chicago Artists Month, and at The Knockdown Center (NYC), Mobius Gallery (Boston), and Lightbox (Detroit). NewCity named Kent a Breakout Artist of 2014 and his performance piece at Sector 2337 (in collaboration with Matthew Goulish & Lin Hixson) was highlighted in Imperceptibly and Slowly Opening (The Green Lantern Press).



Adrienne Brown is Assistant Professor in the University of Chicago Department of English Language and Literature.  Brown earned her PhD from Princeton University. Brown specializes in American and African-American cultural production in the 20th century. She is currently exploring the influence of architecture and urban planning on literary form, and the ways that narrative intervenes in our historical and experiential understandings of space. Brown's work also considers a range of objects beyond the literary, considering the ways TV shows hear, journalists see, and class may be felt, and analyzing race's sonic and spatial dimensions. Brown is co-editor of Race and Real Estate (Oxford University Press), and is currently working on a book recovering the skyscraper's central role in structuring American social and aesthetic perception in the early twentieth century.


Robert Loerzel is a Chicago-based freelance journalist and photographer. He is author of the historical nonfiction book Alchemy of Bones: Chicago’s Luetgert Murder Case of 1897 (University of Illinois Press.) His reporting and writing have appeared in many publications, including The Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Reader, Chicago magazine, Crain’s Chicago Business, Playbill, the Chicago Sun-Times, Newcity, and The Huffington Post blog. Loerzel is a frequent contributor to WBEZ Chicago Public Radio, including stories for Curious City. Loerzel’s concert photography has appeared in many media outlets including Rolling Stone, the Chicago Reader, and The A.V. Club. Newcity has named @robertloerzel the “Best Chicago Twitterer for news,” and the Thrillest listed him as one of “The 50 Chicago Twitter Feeds That Matter.”


Bob Palmer is Policy Director for Housing Action Illinois, and has over 25 years experience in housing organizing, advocacy, training, and finance. He joined Housing Action in September 2002. In recent years, he's worked on successful efforts to create and fund a state rental subsidy program for extremely low-income households, secure money for affordable housing in Illinois' capital budget for the first time, pass state legislation protecting homeowners and renters during the foreclosure process and protect state funding for homeless service providers. He joined the board of the National Low Income Housing Coalition in 2013.



Ashlie Sandoval is a PhD candidate in the Department of Performance Studies at Northwestern University where she received a certificate in Critical Theory. She graduated from University of Cincinnati with an MA in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Sandoval served in the Peace Corps in the Republic of Georgia for two years after receiving a BA from San Francisco State University in Japanese and political science. Her dissertation interrogates how the performativity of work structures city spaces to service a wealthy minority at the expense of marginalized communities. Turning to the aesthetic, she investigates more equitable ways of inhabiting the city that would also change how we work. Currently, she is writing about tiny house villages for the unhoused.