Streb

From "Departure and Discovery: New Directions at the Apex of Creativity," a blog for the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society by Leah Hood.

With a decorated career in both dance and choreography, Elizabeth Streb has spent the last 20 years inventing an entirely new discipline of movement and machinery. She calls it “extreme action” — a fusion of dance and athleticism, combined with a precisely timed set of movements that pushes dancers’ bodies to new realms of discovery.

A visit to SLAM, the Streb Laboratory for Action Mechanics, is disconcerting and energizing, confusing and awe-inspiring. It is rare to witness something for which your brain has no paradigm, but that is exactly what happens in the presence of Streb’s dance company. 

Streb explains some of her philosophy that is built around rhythm and timing and risk: "My intention has always been: What story can action tell that no other discipline can tell? What is the iambic pentameter of action?… Our job is to confuse people and take them to new zones. New zones can be temporal and spatial and physical. … It does have to be extreme; it has to be dangerous."