"The Garden of Forking Paths," conceived, written and directed by Nichole Canuso; choreographed by Nichole Canuso in collaboration with the ensemble. Photo by Matt Saunders.

Nichole Canuso

Artist in Residence, 2022
Artist in Residence, 2020

person standing in a desert landscape

Artist Statement

We are alone in our experience yet ultimately interconnected. These two forces guide my practice. I am a choreographer concerned with creating moments of connection across distances, honoring the intimacy and immediacy that can come from simple exchanges. I believe that all bodies are wise, and I create interactive performance structures to invite that wisdom to unfold in community. My dedication to dance is an expansive relationship that manifests as performances, installations, films, gatherings, and intimate dialogues. I make art as a reminder to stay curious, inviting participants to embrace a state of reflection, play, wonder, and care.

While at Headlands

My recent work explores multiple ways that live, embodied presence can interface with emerging technologies with an emphasis on intimate encounters and the power of listening. While at Headlands I’ll be in the early research phase of a roaming performance ritual that will unfold alongside a body of water. This new work will invite the audience/participants, guided by prompts on headphones, to encounter their surroundings and themselves through the lens of loss and transformation. Sometimes we have to move forward despite being in a state of unresolved conflict or deep grief. But can we build our own personal rituals to acknowledge and heal or to pause and then continue? Sometimes sitting with a stranger and holding a small piece of their story, or wordlessly moving in parallel with someone else, can influence our trajectory, and keep us in touch with our curiosity. If we accept that remembering is a creative act that occurs in collaboration with our present surroundings, in what ways can the presence of a stranger shift our relationship to our own story?

Selected Works


The Garden:Invisible Branches.

Conceived by Nichole Canuso, commissioned by The Philadelphia Museum of Art.


Nichole Canuso and Geoff Sobelle, Pandæmonium, 2016; documentation from performance at New York Live Arts

Performed by Nichole Canuso and Geoff Sobelle; music composition and live performance by Xander Duell; choreographed by Nichole Canuso; directed by Lars Jan; video and interactive software design by Pablo N. Molina and Jesse Garrison; lighting design by Mike Inwood; costume design by Olivera Gaijic; props design by Alicia Crosby; set design by Philipp Schaerer


Conceived and Directed by Nichole Canuso in collaboration with Mikaal Sulaiman (Sound Designer/Composer), Pablo N. Molina and Jesse Garrison (Video and Interactive Software Designers), Christopher Ash (Scenic Designer), Maiko Matsushima (Costumes), Emily Schuman (Object design), and Jennifer Turnbull (Outreach Coordinator).


Nichole Canuso and Lars Jan, TAKES, 2010; performance with installation

Conceived and directed by Nichole Canuso and Lars Jan; performed by Nichole Canuso and Dito VanReigersberg; choreographed by Nichole Canuso; sound design and original composition by Michael Kiley; video software design by Pablo N. Molina; costume and props by Maiko Matsushima; production and stage management by Sarah Chandler