Jody Sperling

Jody Sperling

Jody Sperling is the Founder/Artistic Director of Time Lapse Dance. She has created 40+ works including many furthering the legacy of modern dance pioneer Loie Fuller (1862-1928). Considered the preeminent Fuller stylist, Sperling has expanded the genre into the 21st century, deploying it in the context of contemporary performance forms. She was nominated for a 2017 World Choreography Award for her work on the French feature film “The Dancer” (premiere 2016 Cannes Film Festival) inspired by Fuller’s life. Years of working in Fuller’s idiom, which involves kinesphere-expanding costumes, has influenced Sperling’s awareness of the body’s relationship with the larger environment.

In 2014, she participated in a polar science mission to the Arctic as the first, and to date only, choreographer-in-residence aboard a US Coast Guard icebreaker. During the expedition, she danced on Arctic sea ice and made the short dance film “Ice Floe,” winner of a Creative Climate Award. Following that experience, Sperling developed programs transporting the icescape to the stage and incorporating climate literacy outreach (see Bringing the Arctic Home). Current projects focus on using visual-kinetic narratives to connect choreography and climate science.

Sperling has received commissions from the Vermont Performance Lab & Marlboro College, The University of Wyoming through the NEA American Masterpieces Program and the Streb Lab for Action Mechanics. Her works have been in the repertory of Holland’s Introdans ensemble and Ice Theatre of New York.

As a dancer, Sperling has performed in the works of other choreographers including Sarah Michelson and Yvonne Rainer. Sperling has served on the Board of Directors of the Society of Dance History Scholars (SDHS) and has presented at the Society’s conferences. She holds an MA in Performance Studies (Tisch School of the Arts, New York University) and a BA in Dance and Italian (Wesleyan University). Her dance writings have appeared online and in print in Dance Magazine, The Village Voice, The SDHS Conference Proceedings, The International Encyclopedia of Dance and the award-winning book Birds of Paradise: Costume as Cinematic Spectacle (British Film Institute, 2014). See publication page.