(Performer) Monica Bill Barnes is a choreographer, performer, and the Artistic Director of Monica Bill Barnes & Company, a NYC based contemporary dance company. Barnes founded MBB&CO in 1997 with the mission to celebrate individuality, humor, and the innate theatricality of everyday life. The company creates full-length shows that tour the country’s biggest stages and tiniest rooms, bringing dance where it doesn’t belong. Her work has been performed in venues ranging from Upright Citizen’s Brigade to The BAM Opera House, and has been presented in more than 75 cities throughout the US. Current projects include a collaborative show with radio host Ira Glass that combines radio stories and dance, Three Acts, Two Dancers, One Radio Host, a collaboration with author/visual artist Maira Kalman creating a guided Museum Workout, and Happy Hour, the world’s first-ever karaoke office party dance show featuring Barnes and her dancing partner, Anna Bass.
(Performer) Anna Bass, Associate Artistic Director/Performer, has worked with MBB&CO since 2003, performing all over the country on stages ranging from public fountains and city parks to comedy clubs and Carnegie Hall. Anna wears the grey suit in Happy Hour, tours the country with Monica and Ira Glass in Three Acts, Two Dancers, One Radio Host and juggles many of MBB&CO’s day-to-day operations. She also served as company Rehearsal Director, Assistant Choreographer for productions at The Atlantic Theater, The Public Theater and Yale Repertory Theater and a roller-skating mouse alongside comedian Mike Birbiglia in This American Life’s The Radio Drama Episode at the BAM Opera House. Anna hails from Forest, Virginia, where she studied almost every dance style from classical ballet to country line dancing. She lives in Brooklyn, NY.
(Lighting Designer) Jane Cox has designed with MBB&CO for more than a decade, and her collaboration with the company is central to her creative life. In 2014 Jane was nominated for both the TONY and the Drama Desk awards for her work on Machinal, and she also designed All The Way on Broadway. In 2013 Jane was awarded the Henry Hewes Design Award for her work on The Flick. Other recent designs in NYC include Picnic and Dinner with Friends for the Roundabout, Passion at CSC and The Whale at Playwrights Horizons. Opera designs include Sydney Opera House, Houston Grand Opera and New York City Opera. Jane has a long-standing relationship with The Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and has been teaching about light and design at Princeton University since 2007.
(Set/Costume Designer) Kelly Hanson is an original company member of MBB&CO, and has been collaborating with Monica since 2001. She is also an Emmy-nominated Art Director for television. Kelly currently spends most days directing art for The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. Kelly was born in Bryan, TX, earned her MFA in Set Design at University of California, San Diego and joined the New York community in 2001. She lives in Brooklyn, NY with her husband, two children and a big black dog.
(Host) Robert Saenz de Viteri has been working with MBB&CO and Ira Glass since 2013. He began working in theater as an audio script assistant to Anna Deavere Smith while she developed Let Me Down Easy. He has created performances and toured productions throughout the world with the Obie Award winning Nature Theater of Oklahoma. As a director in New York he has worked at the Ensemble Studio Theater, The Flea, The Atlantic Theater, Office Ops, and Access Theater where he directed the NYTimes Critic’s Pick production of Michael & Edie. In 2014 he joined Ira Glass and This American Life producing Episode 528, “The Radio Drama Episode” live on stage at BAM. He recently created The Spiritual Life of Modern America, based on Knut Hamsun’s mostly unread book of the same title and the experiences of many people moving to America. The show premiered at the Brageteater in Norway.
Monica Bill Barnes & Company is a contemporary American dance company that brings dance where it does not belong. We create and produce each work entirely from its own rulebook—dancing to radio interviews on the biggest stages in the world, hosting a weekly show in a crowded office party, or leading a choreographed exercise routine in an art museum. Within each of these new contexts and borrowed environments, we constantly find humor in our awkward, everyday triumphs and failures. The company consists of a team of collaborators – Artistic Director/Choreographer, Monica Bill Barnes; Associate Artistic Director/Performer, Anna Bass; designers Kelly Hanson (Set/Costume) and Jane Cox (Lighting); and the newest company member, Robbie Saenz de Viteri (Creative Producing Director). Together, this team creates the most unlikely experiences for every kind of audience. MonicaBillBarnes.com
Gibney Dance, founded in 1991, is a trailblazing organization whose mission is to bring the possibility of movement where it otherwise would not exist. Through three interrelated fields of action—Center, Company, and Community Action—Gibney Dance is “Making Space for Dance” in studios, on stages, and in underserved shelters and schools. GibneyDance.org
The Joyce Theater. founded in 1982, was created by dancers for dance. Today, The Joyce is considered one of the premiere performance venues for dance and attracts an annual audience of more than 140,000. Since its inception, The Joyce has welcomed over 270 New York City-based, national and international dance companies to its stage. It would be difficult to imagine the dance world today without The Joyce Theater. In addition, The Joyce now oversees DANY (Dance Art New York) Studios, eleven affordable studios, located at 38th Street and Eighth Avenue, that are appropriate for rehearsals, auditions, classes and workshops. Joyce.org