Dance is a lens through which I reflect, refract, and absorb. I rewire the body to confuse the brain until I relocate myself on the map; I am woman, casual athlete, disaster, and polka-dot. I am all of these things and more amidst a complex web of contradictory geographies. Lately, I find myself navigating by choreographing attention towards that which always seems to be present; awkwardness. Awkwardness and all its bodily, spatial, and durational manifestations. Awkwardness is the body at the edge of reason, lingering in a gap the mind is not ready to comprehend. It lives in pregnant pauses, a laugh that becomes a cry, or a stuttering confrontation. In a world in which awkwardness is often overlooked, I seek to illuminate its presence in my art-making, if only to craft a breath that might be missing between us. Grounded in live performance, my research employs awkwardness to destabilize my own trainings in Western concert dance forms. By actively disallowing certain coded pleasures of conventional theater practices, my work often displays its own making, revealing the profound within the mundane and the mundane within the profound. All that to say, I have questions. I have questions that I don’t even know that I have yet, and I know I’m not alone. I want to ask questions together, and maybe making art is the best way to do so. I want to make art that participates at intersections. I want to make art that is bigger than itself.
Currently, Meredith is attending graduate school at the University of Iowa, working towards her MFA in Dance/Choreography.
Meredith Stapleton is a Philadelphia-based dance artist and teacher. She grew up in Harvard, MA training at Acton School of Ballet and performing with Commonwealth Ballet Company. In 2013, she graduated from Muhlenberg College as a Dance major and Women's Studies minor. In Spring 2012, Meredith studied in Arezzo, Italy at Accademia dell’Arte. She has attended many summer workshops, including Burklyn Ballet Theater, Alonzo King Lines School of Ballet, the Boston Conservatory, on scholarship with Summer Stages at Concord Academy, and Doug Varone & Dancers. Meredith has performed works by Corrie Cowart, Trinette Singleton, Meredith Rainey, Sean Curran, Teresa Fellion, The Bang Group, Heidi Cruz-Austin, Charlotte Boye-Christensen, Monica Bill Barnes, Melinda Myers, Armando Duarte, Shannon Alvis, and Jeffrey Peterson. Meredith has been a company member of DanceSpora, Nora Gibson Contemporary Ballet, Megan Flynn Dance Company, and The Naked Stark, and has collaborated with many independent artists and collectives in Philadelphia. She has presented her choreography across the northeast in various festivals, co-produced to Philadelphia Fringe shows, and “2 by 2” at The Iron Factory since Fall 2013. Meredith has taught at Happy Feet Dance Studio, Concord Academy, Haddonfield School of Dance, Muhlenberg College, Koresh School of Dance, Philadelphia Dance Academy, The University of Iowa, and PlayArts.