Paula Higa is a Brazilian-born American choreographer who has been making dances, teaching, and performing for more than 30 years between Brazil and the USA. She is an Assistant Professor and Resident choreographer in the School of the Arts - Dance Program at the University of Vermont. She holds an MFA in Dance from UWM, a BS in Chemical Engineering from Brazil, a certification in PBT - Progressing Ballet Technique, and lots of experience within the arts field.
In 2016, she founded her dance company, PHD - Paula Higa Dance, and Encounters-- an improvisational work of music and dance. As a performer, she danced in the works of Mark Morris, Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR), Larry Keigwin, and Jennifer Monson, among others. Her work has been performed nationally and internationally.
She is the recipient of the NEFA - New England Dance Fund Grant, UVM - Coor Collaborative Fellows Award, Vermont Community Foundation's Artist Grant, Vermont Arts Council - Artist Development Grant, OVPR Express Grant, and others. Her accolades include Best Screendance in Los Angeles, the Genres and Performances Film Festival in Aveiro, Portugal, Diorama International Film Festival in India, 2022 Nukhufest in NYC, IMARP in Brazil, the ARFF - Around International Film Festival in Berlin, Germany, and Florence Dance On Screen Festival in Italy.
As a dance maker, I believe choreography is research. I am interested in uncovering themes rooted in the intersection of dance and the visual arts. My works are rooted in feminism and examine discriminatory issues in our society. I hope to give voice to underrepresented categories, inviting my audience to reflect on power inequality, gender hierarchy, and patriarchy. My creative process investigates the relationship between body, movement, and narrative. I create sophisticated but provocative dances based on the information around me. I genuinely believe in the power of the arts.
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