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Rachel Bowditch

Program Dir (ACD) & Professor
Faculty w/Admin Appointment, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 2002
Instructor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 2002
Biography: 

Rachel Bowditch (PhD/Full Professor) is the director of graduate studies in the School of Film, Dance, and Theatre in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts overseeing eight graduate programs: MFA in Theatre for Youth, MFA in Dance, MFA in Directing, MFA in Performance, MFA in Dramatic Writing, and MFA in Interdisciplinary Digital Media as well as the PhD in Theatre for Youth and PhD in Theatre and Performance of the Americas. She was a fellow at the Harvard Mellon Institute for Performance Research in “Public Humanities,” in 2018 and was featured as one of the “Top 100 Creatives,” by Origins Magazine in 2015.

She is a theatre director and author of three books, "On the Edge of Utopia: Performance and Ritual at Burning Man" (Seagull/University of Chicago Press 2010), "Performing Utopia" co-edited with Pegge Vissicaro (Seagull/University of Chicago Press 2018) and "Physical Dramaturgy: Perspectives from the Field" co-edited with Jeff Casazza and Annette Thornton (Routledge 2018). She is currently working on her fourth book under contract with Routledge about Richard Schechner’s performance workshop and Rasaboxes with Paula Murray Cole and Michele Minnick (expected publication 2020).

Her scholarly work has been published in TDR (The Performance Review), Performance Research, Theatre Topics, the Journal of Media and Religion, Ecumenica, and Puppetry International as well as book chapters in "Festive Devils in the Americas" edited by Milla Riggio and Paolo Vignolo, "Playa Dust: Collected Stories from Burning Man" edited by Samantha Krukowski, and "Focus on World Festivals" edited by Chris Newbold. She wrote the catalogue essay for two Berlin-based artists, ROMER + ROMER (translated into German) for their Burning Man: Electric Sky exhibit in Berlin in 2019 at Haus am Lutzowplatz, where she also gave a lecture. She regularly presents both her scholarship and theatre research at theatre conferences nationally and internationally.

Her performance and directing work specializing in devising, site-specific, and physical theatre, tackles challenging social issues from suicide, addiction, madness, forced relocation, the death penalty, and colonization has been seen at theatres and venues such as Childsplay, Mixed Blood, Northwest Children's Theatre, the Denver Center, Mesa Arts Center, Phoenix Art Museum, IDEA Museum, and Scottsdale Public Art. Her artistic work has been featured and reviewed in the The Director's Vision by Scott Shattuck, Digital Media, Projection Design, and Technology for Theatre by Alex Oliszewski and Daniel Fine (Routledge), New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Theatre Journal, Newsweek, American Theatre, The Sun (NYC), The Village Voice, Time Out New York, Live Design, Rolling Stone, Vogue Italia, U.S. Airways Magazine, Channel 12 News, Channel 8/PBS, ABC 15 News, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Minneapolis Daily Planet, Aisle Say Twin Cities, TYA Today, the Phoenix New Times and Arizona Republic among other publications. 

She received her bachelor's degree in theatre (directing) from Skidmore College, a certificate of completion from Ecole de Jacques Lecoq International School of Physical Theatre in Paris, France, and her master's degree and doctorate in performance studies from New York University. 

To see more of her work, visit: www.vesselproject.org and www.rachelbowditch.com

 

Education: 
  • Ph.D. Performance Studies, New York University 2006
  • Masters degree. Performance Studies, New York University 2006
  • Certificate, Ecole de Jacques Lecoq, Paris 1999
  • B.A. Theatre Directing, Skidmore College 1998 
Research Interests: 

Devising, directing, experimental performance, avant-garde history, ritual and festival theory, utopian theory, movement pedagogy (Rasaboxes, Lecoq and physical dramaturgy). 

Publications: 

Books

On the Edge of Utopia: Performance and Ritual at Burning Man (Seagull books/University of Chicago Press 2010)

In On the Edge of Utopia, Rachel Bowditch—performer, theatre director, scholar, and Burning Man participant—explores the spectrum of performance and ritual practices within Black Rock City from the everyday to spectacle, the profane to the sublime. Bowditch argues that Burning Man can be understood as a contemporary galaxy of happenings, a site for rehearsals of utopia, and a secular pilgrimage. As Burning Man continues to grow, it is creating new paradigms for performance, installation art, community, and invented rituals in the twenty-first century. 

 

Performing Utopia co-edited with Pegge Vissicaro (University of Chicago Press/Seagull Books 2018)

Building upon her first book, On the Edge of Utopia: Performance and Ritual at Burning Man (University of Chicago Press/Seagull Books 2010), Performing Utopia, is a volume of nine essays edited by Rachel Bowditch and Pegge Vissicaro, that expands Jill Dolan's theory of the utopia performative to encompass performance in public life—from diasporic hip-hop battles, Chilean military parades, commemorative processions, Blackfoot powwows, and post-Katrina Mardi Gras to the Philadelphia Mummers Parade, Festas Juninas in Brazil, the Renaissance Fairs in Arizona, and neoburlesque competitions. How do these performances rehearse and enact visions of a utopic world? What can the lens of utopia illuminate about the potential of performing bodies to transform communities, identities, values, and beliefs across time

To develop the book, she was awarded a competitive $45,000 ASU Institute for Humanities Research Fellowship (2009-2010) on the theme “Utopia, Dystopia, and Social Transformation” with Pegge Vissicaro (Clinical Professor of Dance) and Tracy Fessenden (Associate Professor of Religious Studies). The book was further developed through an international working group, Popular Fiestas and Carnivals of the Americas, which she helped to form in Argentina in 2007 that convenes festival scholars bi-annually at the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics. The research group has convened at the Hemispheric Encuentro in Argentina (August 2007), Bogotá, Colombia (August 2009), American Society for Theatre Research (ASTR) in Seattle (November 2010), Santiago, Chile (June 2016), and Mexico City, 2019.

 

Physical Dramaturgy: Perspectives from the Field co-edited with Jeff Casazza and Annette Thornton (Routledge 2018)

A significant departure from her research on festivals, utopian theory, and Burning Man, Physical Dramaturgy expands upon her life-long research on movement pedagogy, devising, and physical dramaturgy. Physical Dramaturgy: Perspectives from the Field (Routledge 2018) co-edited with Jeff Casazza and Annette Thornton, contains 20 essays by leading directors, choreographers, and movement specialists in the field. While the traditional dramaturg shares research intellectually, the physical dramaturg does so viscerally and somatically. By combining elements of text, history, dramatic structure, and the author’s intent with movement analysis and physical theatre pedagogies, the physical dramaturg gives actors the opportunity to manifest their work in a connected and intuitive manner and creates a field that is as varied and rich as the theatre itself.  Physical Dramaturgy: Perspectives from the Field explores the ways in which this unique role can benefit the production team during the design and rehearsal phases of both traditional and devised productions. Individual chapters look at new ways of approaching a wealth of physical worlds, from the works of Shakespeare and other period playwrights to the processes of Jerzy Grotowski, Lloyd Williamson, Richard Schechner, and Michael Chekhov, and devising original works in a variety of contexts from Pig Iron, Dell’Arte International, Bill Bowers and mime, Tectonic Theater Project, and Liz Lerman’s Dance Exchange. The anthology gives dramaturgs, actors, and directors new ways of looking at existing methods and provides examples of how to translate, combine, and adapt them into new explorations for training, rehearsal, or research. She contributed three chapters, “Devising Madness: Physical Dramaturgy in The Ophelia Project and Asylum,” which details her eight-year project, the Muse Trilogy and examines her devising and dramaturgical process through an exploration of the body; an interview with Moisés Kaufman, artistic director of Tectonic Theater Project, “Moment Work: Exploring the Full Potential of the Stage”; and an interview with Liz Lerman which resulted in the chapter, “Dramaturgy as Litany”.

 

PEER REVIEWED BOOK CHAPTERS

2016   

“Commemorating the Ancestors: Performances of Death at the Tucson All Souls’ Procession.” Focus on World Festivals. Edited by Chris Newbold, Goodfellows Books, Oxford, 2016, pp. 28-289.

 “Republic of the Imagination: Burning Man and the Culture of Radical Self-Expression.” Focus on World Festivals. Edited by Chris Newbold, Goodfellows Books, Oxford, 2016, pp.64-76.

2014   

“Elemental Performance: Realms of Fire at Burning Man.” Playa Dust: A Burning Man Comprehensive History, edited by Samantha Krukowski. Immedium, 2014, pp.160-173.

2015   

“The Inferno: Burning Man and the Tipping Point.” Festive Devils of the Americas, edited by Milla Riggio, Paolo Vignolo, and Angela Marino Segura, Seagull Books (University of Chicago Press), 2015, pp. 299-316.

Website created for the book: http://www.diablosfestivos.org with funding from the Hemispheric Institute, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, and the University of California at Berkeley. Published in Spanish by the Universidad Nacional de Colombia Press in 2013.

 

PEER REVIEWED ARTICLES

2018   

“Four Principles about Site-Specific Theatre: A Conversation on Architecture, Bodies, and Presence,” co-authored by Rachel Bowditch, Daniel Bird Tobin, Chelsea Pace, and Marc Devine. Theatre Topics, Volume 28, Number 1, March 2018, pp. E-5-E-19 (Article). John Hopkins University Press. muse.jhu.edu/article/690019/pdf

2013   

“Phoenix Rising: The Culture of Fire at the Burning Man Festival,” Performance Research, Routledge, an imprint of Taylor and Francis, Vol. 17, No. 6, ‘On Fire’ (Jan 2013), pp. 113-122.

2010   

"The Somatic City: Rehearsing Utopia at the Burning Man Festival." in Cross-Cultural Poetics: Streetnotes, University of California (Special issue on Urban Culture and Aesthetics guest edited by Blagovesta Momchedjikova). Spring 2010.

2007   

"Temple of Tears: Revitalizing and Inventing Ritual in the Burning Man Community in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada.” Journal of Religion and Theatre, December 2007.

 “Dancing With Fire: The Ultimate Effigy.” Puppetry International Magazine Issue 22, November 2007, pp. 16-19.

 

INVITED ARTICLES

2018   

“Phoenix Rising: Reflecting on The Conference of the Birds,” Eucumenica Journal of Theatre and Performance, Special Edition,  “Muslim Worlds,” edited by Hesam Sharifian and Claire Pamment. Submitted Fall 2018. Printed Spring 2019.

 “Republic of the Imagination: Burning Man and the Culture of Radical Self-Expression,” Electric Sky catalogue for ROMER + ROMER, printed in English and translated into German. Submitted Fall 2018. Printed Spring 2019.

2015   

“Utopia/Dystopia,” Eucumenica Journal of Theatre and Performance, “Journal Anthology of Critical Terms,” Fall 2015, pp.125-132.

2011   

“The Creative Conundrum: How the Arts Fit into a Research University.” American Society for Theatre Research/ASTR-Online. August 2011.

2009   

“Performance Studies International 13: Happening/Performance/Event.” Everywhere and All At Once: An Anthology of Writings on Performa 07. Edited by RoseLee Goldberg. Zurich/New York: JRP/Ringier, 2009. Pp348-349.

 

BOOK REVIEWS

2016   

“Media and Ritual: Death, Community, and Everyday Life,” by Johanna Sumiala. Journal of Media and Religion. Taylor and Francis, 2016.

2011   

“Psychophysical Acting: An Intercultural Approach After Stanislavski.” by Phillip B. Zarrilli. The Drama Review (TDR) 55:1 (T209) Spring 2011, pp. 159-161.

 

Research Activity: 

 

Devised and Public Art Performances

Professional Original Devised Work (Funded)

2017   

  • The Conference of the Birds, a devised, immersive site-specific adaptation of Farid ud-Din Attar’s 12th Century Sufi poem. Two-year development process. The Unexpected Gallery, February 2017.
  • Shooting Columbus produced by Borderlands at La Pilita, Tucson. Three-year development process. March-April 2017.

2015  

  • The Sun Serpent by José Cruz Gonzalez at Northwest Children’s Theatre. Three week run. September 2015.

2014   

  • The Sun Serpent, bi-lingual version by playwright José Cruz González and composer Daniel Valdez. Remounted at Mixed Blood Theatre, featured performance of the Second’s Festival in Minneapolis, MN. February 2014.

2013   

  • Asylum, a site-specific immersive performance about women, writing, and madness. Part 3 of The Muse Trilogy. The Ice House, Phoenix. November 2013.

2011   

  • The Sun Serpent, a two-year (2010-2011) devising project with Childsplay by playwright José Cruz González and composer Daniel Valdez. Premiered at the Tempe Center for the Arts in October 2011.

2009   

  • The Ophelia Project: A Poetic Portrait of the Lives and Writing of Virginia Woolf, Anne Sexton, and Sylvia Plath.
    • Three-year script development November 2006–April 2009.
    • World premiere produced by Arizona Women’s Theatre Company, April 2009.
    • Taliesin West Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation in collaboration with the Taliesin Architecture apprentices.

2008    

  • The Ophelia Project: A Poetic Portrait of the Lives and Writing of Virginia Woolf, Anne Sexton, and Sylvia Plath. 
    •  Philadelphia Live Arts/Fringe Festival, Media Bureau, Philadelphia. September 2008.
  • The Ophelia Project: A Poetic Portrait of the Lives and Writing of Virginia Woolf, Anne Sexton, and Sylvia Plath
    • Phoenix Fringe Festival. Space 55, Phoenix. May 2008.
  • The Ophelia Project: A Poetic Portrait of the Lives and Writing of Virginia Woolf, Anne Sexton, and Sylvia Plath.
    • Work-in-Progress. Lyceum, School of Theatre and Film, Arizona State University. April 2008.

2002   

  • Arcana Downstairs Series, Ontological Hysteric Theatre. New York City. August 2002.          
    • Original devised work. Director, producer, and playwright.

2001   

  • A Woman’s Place by Susan Riskin.
    • HERE Performing Arts Center, New York City. April 2001. Director and producer.

2000   

  • Mastaba. American Living Room Festival, HERE Performing Arts Center.
    • New York City. July 2000. Original devised work. Director, producer, and playwright.
  • City of Bells: An Adaptation of Allen Ginsberg’s Poetry. HERE Performing Arts Center.
    • March 2000. Original devised work. Director, producer, and playwright.

 

Professional/Equity: Stage Readings (Funded)

2016   

  • American Mariachi by José Cruz Gonzalez. Colorado New Play Summit, The Denver Center. February 2016. Two weekends. Industry staged reading.

2012   

  • Savage Bond by Steve Holladay. Stage Reading. Arizona Theatre Company. Café Bohemia Reading Series, Tucson. November 2012.

 

Funded Public Art Commissions/Invited to Develop New Work

2019

  • Mystic
    • Devour Festival at Botanical Gardens. Funded by Celebrity Cruises and Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance (SAACA). Designed, built, and constructed four new costumes for atmospheric performance based on the garden of Eden.

2018   

  • Eden
    • Devour Festival at Botanical Gardens. Funded by Celebrity Cruises and Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance (SAACA). Designed, built, and constructed four new costumes for atmospheric performance based on the garden of Eden.
  • Twilight
    • Desert of Stars, Botanical Gardens Gala. April 28th. Designed, built, and constructed three fully illuminated costumes for atmospheric performance based on the stars and galaxy to align with the Gala theme.

2017   

  • Sanctuary, a new site-specific atmospheric performance
    • Designed, built, and constructed four new costumes for atmospheric performance based on the paintings of Julie Heffernan. Sanctuary imagines a post-apocalyptic world decimated by environmental catastrophe. Four figures dressed in fragments of recycled objects—burlap, plastics, twine—viscerally tap into unimaginable landscapes to allow us to reflect on the current moment poetically and somatically.  Commissioned by Mesa Arts Center for Season Kick-Off Event. September 8, 2017. 5,000 in attendance.
  • Paradise Lost: Transfix at the Salton Sea, site-specific atmospheric performance
    • Commissioned by EMERGE 2017 in collaboration with professional fashion photographer Chris Loomis. The Transfix figures roam the Salton Sea—an abandoned California resort town—as a stark reminder of the causes and consequences of the boom and busy economy. Center for Science and the Imagination, Arizona State University. February 2017. 

2016   

  • Worlds of Literature, a new site-specific atmospheric performance
    • Designed, built, and constructed five new costumes for atmospheric performance based on inspired by great works of literature (Alice in Wonderland, The Alchemist, House of Spirits, Wrinkle in Time, and the works of Hans Christian Anderson). Commissioned by Mesa Art Center for the Season Opening. September 2016. 4,500 in attendance.

2014   

  • The Naiads, a new site-specific masked atmospheric performance. Collaboration with Zarco Guerrero.
    • Puente Festival, Tempe Center for the Arts, Childsplay. September 2014. 

2013   

  • Urban Renaissance, a new site-specific atmospheric performance
    • Designed, built, and constructed three new costumes for atmospheric performance based on Renaissance paintings. Commissioned by Mesa Art Center Remix/Remaster for Season Opening. September 2013. 

2012    

  • Chrome, a new site-specific atmospheric performance.
    • Designed, built, and constructed three new costumes for atmospheric performance based on Oskar Schlemmer’s Bauhaus. Commissioned by Mesa Arts Center for the Mesa Winter Festival. December 2012. 

2010    

  • Spectrum: Sunset Ritual and Community Waterfall.
    • Commissioned by Scottsdale Public Art for the Soleri Bridge Dedication and Inaugural Ceremony with the Mayor of Scottsdale and Paolo Soleri. Soleri Bridge, Scottsdale, AZ. December 10-11, 2010. 
  • The Art of Maintenance: Fish Herding at Scottsdale Canal.
    • Commissioned by Scottsdale Public Art for canal clearing event. A site-specific performance of Transfix with 24 performers. Marshall Way Bridge, Scottsdale, AZ. January 2010. 

Funded Public Art Commissions/Competitive & Juried

2015   

  • Aurora, site-specific atmospheric performance
    • Commissioned by Mesa Arts Center for Spark Festival 2015.
    • Designed, built, and constructed three new costumes for atmospheric performance based on the colors of the desert; sage green, agave blue, and desert rose. Collaboration with Rolling Stone photographer Scott London. March 2015. Juried.
  • Equinox, site-specific atmospheric performance
    • Commissioned by Mesa Arts Center for Spark Festival 2015.
    • Designed, built, and constructed four new costumes for atmospheric performance based on the four elements: fire, air, earth, and water. March 2015. Juried.
  • Abraxa: Multi-media window installation and performance.
    • Commissioned by Scottsdale Public Art for INFLUX 5 and EMERGE 2015. Designed, built, and constructed one new costume for atmospheric performance based on historical utopian architectural plans. ASU Museum Brickyard and Sky Song. E.S.P. TV Live Stream to NYC and Philly. December and March 2014-2015. Juried.

2013   

  • Memory Room: A Performance Installation about Women, Writing, and Memory.
    • Commissioned by Scottsdale Public Art for IN FLUX 3. Marshall Way Gallery District, Scottsdale. March-June 2013. Juried. 

 

Site-Specific Performance

Transfix, site-specific atmospheric performance (established in 1996)

Transfix is an interactive, silent performance that transforms urban architecture into a poetic theatrical landscape. Performers break out of the traditional theatre arena into a public space where the audience becomes part of the performance, coming and going as they please. Weaving in and around urban architectural spaces and spectators, we transform the street into a stage, revealing the poetry and beauty of the mundane. Transfix is a collaborative, interactive urban intervention where the passerby, not expecting to see a performance stops in their tracks, transfixed.

TRANSFIX: Funded Public Art/Invited & Curated

2018   

  • Transfix, “Fantastic Planet” exhibit at the Mesa Art Center. Performance for the public, May 4. V.I.P. party for the American Alliance of Museums, May 6 with over 100 museum curators from around the United States in attendance.
  • Glitter and Glow Festival, City of Glendale. January 2018. Est. 65,000 people in attendance.

2017   

  • Association for Theatre in Higher Education Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada. Las Vegas Strip.

2014   

  • Phoenix Art Museum. Opening reception for Still/Life exhibition. February 2014.
  • Unreal City: Phoenix Art Museum.
    • Combining Transfix with images from Arizona ghost-towns, Unreal City explores the beauty, poetry, and fragility of the desert, the reality of water shortage, and the prospect of Phoenix becoming one of the largest ghost towns in the world when our water supply runs out–Phoenix as a mirage.
  • Featured performance group at the Association for Theatre in Higher Education.
    • Fairmont Hotel complex. Scottsdale, Arizona. July 2014.

2013   

  • Burning Man Opera tribute to Pepe Ozan with Butoh Troupe Bad Unkl Sista (San Francisco), Burning Man, Black Rock City, Nevada, August 2013.
    • **Featured 3 times in Rolling Stone Magazine. Pro-bono.
  • Spark Festival. Mesa Arts Center. March 2013.
  • Desierto Remix with Nemcataoca and Verbabala. Deer Valley Art Center, Phoenix, October, 2013.
  • The Void, FUSE Project. Galvin Mainstage, September 2013. Pro-bono.

2012    

  • Mesa Festival of Creativity. Commissioned by the City of Mesa and the Mesa Arts Council.
    • Vessel performed 7 days of the site-specific performance. March 9-18, 2012.  Mesa, AZ.

2011   

  • Phoenix Art Museum. April 2011.

2010   

  • Transfix Retrospective 1996-2010: A Multi-Media Performance Installation in collaboration with Verbobala, SonicAnta, Chris Loomis Photography, Saskia Jorda, and Simon De Aguero. Monorchid Gallery. April 2010.    
  • Imperial Dunes Video and Photography Shoot with 8 performers, professional photography by Chris Loomis and installation artist Saskia Jorda. Imperial Dunes, California. Photos shown at Monorchid Gallery, Phoenix. February 2010.

2009    

  • Transfix: Where the Sidewalk Ends
    • Fashion photoshoot with photographer Chris Loomis, May 2009. Phoenix, Arizona. 
  • SMoCA Nights no.18: Valley Fever. Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art. March 2009.

2008     

  • Sound in the Ground. Mesa Center for Contemporary Arts. Vessel performed Transfix for outdoor public art evening. March 2008.
  • Phoenix Fringe Festival. Opening Night performance gala. Space 55. May 2008.
  • NightActs 1: Art Museum, Arizona State University. February 2008. Collaboration with Jacob Pinholster.

2007     

  • Bell Rock, Sedona and Sunset Point Film/Photography Shoot with Jacob Pinholster and Bruce Bowditch. Sedona, Arizona. March 2007.

 

Corporate Engagements (Paid)

2018   

  • Transfix, POP Art at the Westin Hotel. Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance (SAACA).
  • Transfix, for the Art of Sound at Frank Lloyd Wright Norman Lykes Houses. The Brand  Consortium PR. May 29.

2017    

  • VIP Hilton Executive Dia de los Muertos Party, Arizona Biltmore Hotel (Waldorf Astoria/Hilton Hotels). October 31st, 2017.
  • Arizona Biltmore Hotel (Waldorf Astoria/Hilton Hotels), Labor Day Weekend Event. September 2nd, 2017.
  • POP: Art, Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance. W Hotel in Scottsdale. May 12.

2012    

  • Macerich Employee Recognition Holiday Party, Biltmore Fashion Park, Scottsdale. December 2012.
  • Fashion’s Night Out, Biltmore Fashion Park, Scottsdale. September 2012.

2011    

  • Narcisse New Year's Eve Celebration. Scottsdale Quarter, Scottsdale, Arizona. January 2011.

2010    

  • Fashion Rules Gala. Neiman Marcus. March 2010.

 

Charity/Benefits (Funded)

2017    

  • CALA Alliance Fundraiser, The Van Buren. November 2017.

2014     

  • ASU President’s Club Holiday Fundraiser featuring the Herberger Institute. The Phoenician. December 2014.

2010    

  • Scorpius Dance Benefit, Catwalk. Phoenix Theatre, April 2010.

 

Spectrum, site-specific atmospheric performance (established in 2008)

Following in the footsteps of Transfix, an interactive atmospheric theatre performance, Spectrum is an atmospheric site-specific performance with performers adorned in elaborate costumes in every color of the spectrum, weaving in and out of audiences and public space creating a visual kaleidoscope.

2017   

  • Mesa Winter Arts Festival. Mesa Art Center. December 2017.
  • ASU Homecoming. October 2017.

2015    

  • Phoenix Art Museum, VIP Party for Andy Warhol Exhibit (March 1 and 2nd) 2015.
  • ASU Life Sciences/Spectrum. March 2015.
  • Mesa Winter Arts Festival. Mesa Arts Center.

2014   

  • Spectrum: Community Waterfall, site-specific atmospheric performance
    • Over the course of 2 hours, Spectrum performers collected water in 50 red buckets from the hotel pool and then the community poured the water back into the pool. Performers handed out small viles of water that drew attention to Indigenous water rights in Arizona and the wastefulness of the hotel’s water usage.
    • Featured performance group at the Association for Theatre in Higher Education; Fairmont Hotel complex, Scottsdale, Arizona. July 2014.
  • Create Academy Fundraiser. April 2014. 
  • I.D.E.A. Museum. Opening VIP reception of new museum. March 2014.

2013   

  • Mesa Winter Arts Festival, December 2013.
  • Spark Festival. Mesa Arts Center. March 2013.

2012    

  • Canal Convergence: Water + Air + Light. Scottsdale Public Art. Fall Equinox. November 2012.
  • Mesa Festival of Creativity. Commissioned by the City of Mesa and the Mesa Arts Council. Vessel performed 7 days of the site-specific performance. March 9-18, 2012.  Mesa, AZ. 

2009    

  • NightActs 2: Arizona State University Art Museum. Invited. February 2009.

2008    

  • First Friday and the Phoenix Fringe Festival. Invited. May 2008.

 

Corporate Engagements (Paid)

2018   

  • Spectrum, POP Art at Kierland Commons, Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance (SAACA). November 17
  • Spectrum, for the Art of Sound at Frank Lloyd Wright Norman Lykes Houses. The Brand  Consortium PR. May 31.

2017    

  • POP: Art. Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance. Kierland Commons. May 13, 2017

2014     

  • Visit Mesa Vendors Conference. Commemorative Air Museum, Mesa. September 2014. 
  • Spectrum, Film shoot for City of Mesa “Limitless” promotional video to be used by the Mesa Visitor’s Bureau. 
  • Visit Mesa Visitors Bureau Event Planners conference. Mesa Center for the Arts. May 2014.

 

Chrome, site-specific atmospheric performance

Originally commissioned by the Mesa Arts Center in 2012, Chrome is a site-specific, atmospheric performance based on the Bauhaus and the work of Oskar Schlemmer.

2018    

  • Winter Festival, Mesa Art Center. December 8 and 9, 2018. 3,000 in attendance.

2016   

  • Surprise Party, City of Surprise. December 2016. 10,000 in attendance.
  • Winter Festival, Mesa Art Center. December 2016. 3,000 in attendance.

2015    

  • Eat, Drink, & Be Pretty event for Food Week, Scottsdale Performing Arts Center. April 15, 2015.

2014    

  • Mesa Winter Arts Festival. Mesa Center for the Arts. December 2014. Invited.
  • I.D.E.A. Museum. Opening reception for Art of the Robot. May 2014. Invited.
  • ASU President’s Club Holiday Fundraiser featuring the Herberger Institute. The Phoenician. December 2014.

2013    

  • Phoenix Zoo Lights. January 2013. January 4, 2013.

 

Aurora, site-specific atmospheric performance

Since 2005, I have been collaborating with photographer Scott London (Rolling Stone, Vanity Fair, GQ, Elle Décor, Marie Claire, Outside, Sierra and National Geographic Traveler). Aurora is a site-specific collaboration with London originally commissioned by Mesa Arts Center Spark Festival. I designed and constructed three costumes inspired by the colors of the desert—sage green, agave blue, and desert rose. We spent a day at the Painted Desert/Petrified Forest doing a photoshoot. These images were then projected via hand-held projectors by the roaming performers on all the surfaces of the Mesa Art Center bringing the beauty of the desert back into the urban environment. 

2016    

  • Glitter and Glow Festival, City of Glendale. January 2016.
    • Est. 65,000 people in attendance.
  • Light the Night at the Phoenix Art Museum. December 2016.
    • 4,000 in attendance.

2015    

  • Botanical Gardens. Opening of the Bruce Munro exhibit. November 2015.
  • City of Mesa, Winter Garden. Mesa, December 2015.

 

Abraxa, site-specific atmospheric performance

Abraxa is a site-specific atmospheric performance originally commissioned by Scottsdale Public Art/INFLUX 5 and Emerge 2015. Costume inspired by utopian architectural designs with hand-held projectors of utopian blueprints.

2017    

  • The Bridge Initiative Gala. Pro-bono.

2015    

  • Conference on Complex Systems, Double Tree Hilton, Tempe. 800 in attendance.

 

The Naiads, a site-specific masked atmospheric performance

The essence of a Naiad was bound to her spring, so if a Naiad's body of water dried, she would die. Working with local Mesa-based master mask maker Zarco Guerrero, we created four Naiads combining Vessel’s Transfix with Zarco’s beautifully hand-crafted masks, the synthesis creating something entirely new. Adorned in all-white accented with organic elements—feathers, bones, twigs and other natural elements—the Naiads draw attention to the scarcity of water in a poetic, haunting way. 

2018   

  • The Naiads: An atmospheric performance with masks by Zarco Guerrero. Dia de los Muertos Celebration at Indian Steele Park, October 2018.
  • Dia de los Muertos Celebration at the Botanical Gardens, November 2018.

2017    

  • Dia de los Muertos Celebration at Indian Steele Park, October 28 2017.
  • Dia de los Muertos Celebration at the Botanical Gardens, November 4, 2017.

 

EVENT CURATOR

2017   

Wicked, Spark After Dark at the Mesa Art Center. Curated an entire evening of DJs, activities, food trucks and family-oriented events. October 21st, 2017. 800 people in attendance. 

 

**For work older than 2006, see www.vesselproject.org

Fall 2021
Course NumberCourse Title
THF 397Prof Development Seminar
THP 483Acting: Viewpoints/Composition
THP 484Internship
THE 499Individualized Instruction
THP 505Graduate Colloquium
THP 580Practicum
THP 590Reading and Conference
THP 592Research
THP 598Special Topics
THP 684Internship
THP 693Applied Project
Fall 2020
Course NumberCourse Title
THP 494Special Topics
HUL 494Special Topics
SOS 498Pro-Seminar
THE 499Individualized Instruction
THP 505Graduate Colloquium
THP 580Practicum
THP 590Reading and Conference
THP 592Research
SOS 594Conference and Workshop
THP 598Special Topics
HUL 598Special Topics
THP 684Internship
THP 693Applied Project
Fall 2019
Course NumberCourse Title
THF 220Principles/Dramatic Analysis
THP 494Special Topics
THE 499Individualized Instruction
THP 580Practicum
THP 590Reading and Conference
THP 592Research
THE 598Special Topics
THP 598Special Topics
THP 684Internship
THP 693Applied Project
Fall 2018
Course NumberCourse Title
THF 220Principles/Dramatic Analysis
THE 499Individualized Instruction
THP 580Practicum
THP 590Reading and Conference
THP 592Research
THE 598Special Topics
THP 598Special Topics
THP 684Internship
Spring 2017
Course NumberCourse Title
THF 220Principles/Dramatic Analysis
THP 494Special Topics
THE 499Individualized Instruction
THP 499Individualized Instruction
THP 590Reading and Conference
THP 684Internship
THP 693Applied Project
Honors / Awards: 

Bowditch received awards for her work directing Childsplay’s 2011 production of The Sun Serpent. With a $25,000 National Endowment for the Arts grant, she directed the world premiere of The Sun Serpent with Childsplay written by José Cruz González and composed by Daniel Valdez at the Tempe Center for the Arts in October 2011, which was remounted at Mixed Blood in Minneapolis in 2014 and Northwest Children's Theatre in 2015. The production was featured in American Theatre (January 2012) and TYA Today (2012).  It received 11 Arizoni Award nominations and won 6 for Best Direction, Best Costume/Masks, Best Lighting, Best Sound, Best Set, and Best Overall Professional Production in 2011. It is now a published script by Dramatic Publishing.

Work History: 

Prior to ASU, as an artistic associate of Richard Schechner’s theatre company East Coast Artists, she had a lead role in Yokastas (2003) and Yokastas Redux (2005) directed by Richard Schechner at LaMaMa Annex (reviewed by the New York Times, the Village Voice, and Time Out New York). As one of the six nationally certified rasaboxes instructors, she has studied and assisted in rasaboxes presentations and workshops with Schechner, Cole, and Minnick since 2002. As an education associate of RoseLee Goldberg’s Performa (author of "Performance Art: From Futurism to the Present"), she was the liaison between Performance Studies International at New York University and Performa Performance Art Biennial ‘07 in 2007 and worked with Performa for several years organizing Performa ’05 in New York City. She also has worked as an actor with award winning psychologist Paul Ekman (Author of "Emotions Revealed") and was featured in his March 2005 National Geographic article on the Mind.

She was the founder of M.O.V.E. (Movement. Observation. Vision. Experimentation) Arizona Laboratory for Movement Research Winter Intensive at ASU in collaboration with Sara Romersberger and the Association for Theatre Movement Educators (ATME) in 2008 and 2009.