Janet Skidmore

Biography: 

Janet Skidmore danced, choreographed, and taught extensively in Chicago, where she founded Add Water & Stir improvisation company. She then relocated to the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, where she became a certified leader of the InterPlay improvisation technique and a graduate of the Brave New Institute, the theater improvisation school founded by Dudley Riggs. Ms. Skidmore directed Just Add Water, a performance company which improvised movement, storytelling, and spoken word, for five years. In 2006, she created a one-woman children’s show about dance, “Marie Taglioni is Not a Dish of Pasta,” which has been performed in both the Minnesota and Iowa Fringe festivals. She teaches school residencies through Young Audiences of Minnesota, as well as through the Illinois Arts Council.

Artistic Statement: 

Although dance is my creative foundation, I am also trained in theater improvisation, sing professionally, and practice a variety of textile arts. These experiences have broadened my ability as a teacher and have made me a more versatile performer. I love performing improvisationally, weaving together stories, movement, and song.

My dance sequences for students focus on technical skills such as rhythm, change of weight, and use of space, without necessarily being of a specific genre. Most importantly, I have students compose dances of their own, teaching them ordering skills and self-evaluation. Once learned, these skills can be incorporated into many other parts of the school curriculum. At the conclusion of a residency, I like to structure an informal performance with teachers, parents, and children participating.

Residency Type: 
Individual Artist