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 Theater and Dance Department at the University of Vermont. She holds an MFA in Dance from UWM, a BS in Chemical Engineering in Brazil, a certification in PBT - Progressing Ballet Technique, and lots of experience within the arts field.
In 2016, she founded my dance company, PHD - Paula Higa Dance, and Encounters-- an improvisational work of music and dance-- in collaboration with trumpeter Arthur Brooks and double bass player Anthony Santor. As a performer, she danced in the works of Mark Morris, Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR), Larry Keigwin, Jennifer Monson, Tiffany Rhynard, Clare Byrne, among others. Her work has been performed at Triskelion Arts in NYC, Boston, Texas, Central Unite States, and Brazil.
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 recent creation, The One I Wanted To Be, in collaboration with visual artist Jenn Karson, was twice awarded Best Screendance in Los Angeles, and officially selected for the Genres and Performances Film Festival in Aveiro, Portugal, Diorama International Film Festival in India, 2022 Nukhufest in NYC, and the ARFF - Around International Film Festival in Berlin, Germany.
As a dancemaker, I believe choreography is research. I am interested in unraveling discoveries rooted in the intersection of dance and visual arts. My works awake my inquisitiveness by examining feminism and discriminatory issues in our society. I give voice to women by inviting my audience to reflect on power inequality, gender hierarchy, and patriarchalism. My creation process investigates the relationship between body, movement, and narrative. I create sophisticated provoking dances based on the information that surrounds me. I truly believe in the power of the arts.