Chrysa Parkinson


Chrysa Parkinson lived in New York for a long time but chose for Brussels because there is more work for her there. In New York she sometimes felt underrecognized: it was often impossible to survive from the dance work while everybody she knew valued it very highly. She never met the journalists who wrote the halfhearted reviews nor the people who decided about funding. She is not sure whether financial support is ever a marker of the value of the work.

To Parkinson, the word ‘community’ implies a mutual responsibility: you have to do things for the community and it will give you things back in return. She feels part of a community that is not geographically determined. The basis of that community is affection and work. People she identifies with and who give her inspiration are part of her community. When rehearsing for a long period, she notices that she becomes less present in the larger dance community but all the more visible in the small group of people she is working with at that moment. She does not feel like she belongs anywhere and always feels slightly outside.

Performing has always been her top priority. In New York, she had to do other jobs in order to keep performing; now it is her main source of income. She does not have economical problems anymore and has the freedom of choice. She might refuse other work in favour of performing. Sometimes she feels that she spends too much time working in the studio and wished she would have more time to think and get inspiration for her work.

Working at P.A.R.T.S. means working in a very small and intimate group, which can also limit one’s point of view. She feels it is necessary to open up her taste in order to continue to grow artistically and personally. People know her in different roles: as a teacher, as a dancer or personally. The problem is that they sometimes identify her with only one role and project their assumptions on her. Her friends are almost all artists in the performance field. Most of all she values the recognition of her ‘peers’ (her ‘artistic contemporaries’). She feels recognized when they respect her work and feel interested in what she is doing.

responsibility – inspiration – affection – independent artists – insular – intimate – assumptions – privacy – misunderstood – teacher – identification – many layers – artistic contemporaries – reviews – funding – void – shallow support – suspension net – intensive working – business class - displacement


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