Discipline: Interdisciplinary Art – movement

Dayna Hanson

Discipline: Interdisciplinary Art – movement
Region: Seattle, WA
MacDowell fellowships: 2017

Dayna Hanson, choreographer, has been creating work at the intersection of dance, theater, and film since 1987. Hanson is a resident artist and co-director of Base, a nonprofit dance and performance space in Seattle. She has toured her dance theater work throughout the U.S. and in Europe, including at On the Boards, Fusebox Festival, Miami Light Project, PuSh Festival, REDCAT, and Noorderzon Festival. Her films have screened at festivals worldwide; her debut feature film, Improvement Club, premiered in Narrative Competition at South by Southwest 2013. She also wrote, choreographed, and directed an episode of Room 104, an HBO television series that premiered in July 2017. Hanson’s episode was called “one of the most striking half-hours I’ve seen all season” by James Poniewozik in The New York Times. While in residence, Hanson worked on a range of screenwriting and choreography projects.

Among a range of honors, Hanson has received a 2012 Artist Trust Arts Innovator Award, a 2010 United States Artists Foundation Oliver Fellowship in Dance and a 2006 John Simon Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship. She has received grants from NEFA/National Dance Project, MAP Fund, National Performance Network and others. With Gaelen Hanson, she co-directed dance theater company 33 Fainting Spells from 1994-2006, performing at Dance Theater Workshop, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Walker Art Center, and dozens of other venues.



Dayna Hanson worked in the Nef studio.

Nef Studio, the first entirely new studio built after 1937, was donated by esteemed photographer, explorer, author, and MacDowell Fellow Evelyn Steffanson Nef in 1992. Endowed funds for the studio’s maintenance in perpetuity and an annual Fellowship for photographers were given in addition to funds for construction. Mrs. Nef said she had known about MacDowell all her…

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