Dance Alum Awarded Pina Bausch Fellowship

February 7, 2020

Majesty Royale BFA ’19 (Dance) has been named a 2020 Pina Bausch Fellow for Dance and Choreography. The fellowship is a program of the Arts Foundation of North-Rhine Westphalia and the Pina Bausch Foundation. Only three fellowships were granted this year from an international pool of applicants of all ages, open to single dancers and choreographers. 

The two foundations have been fulfilling the credo of acclaimed dancer and choreographer Pina Bausch since 2016 with this co-developed grant program and award: “It is not about art, also not about pure technique. It is about life, and therefore it is about finding a language for life.” 

Majesty Royale
Photo cred: William Hicks

As a sponsored recipient, Royale has been granted temporary residence as visiting student and placement with a choreographer in the studies of dance techniques abroad in France. “Receiving the Pina Bausch Fellowship grant means that I am supported moving into the next phase of my career,” Royale said. “I am now a part of an incredible network of diverse artists who have also won this award, including my 2020 cohort—McIntosh Jerahuni and Neve Mazique.”

Because the Bausch fellowship is not project-based or aimed at the development of new work, fellows must identify a cooperating partner to collaborate with, the plans of which must be pre-arranged. Royale has chosen to collaborate with artmaking partners Brennan Gerard and Ryan Kelly in Paris. Their fellowship centers around Gerard and Kelly’s ongoing project Modern Living, which explores intimacy and domestic space within legacies of modernist architecture and will occupy Le Corbusier’s Cité Radieuse in Marseille in June 2020. Acting as the choreographers’ assistant, Royale will engage the issues of queer liveness, exposure and occupancy; examining what it means to imagine alongside another. 

Royale’s work focuses on fashioning an alternate and ecstatic present/future condition for black queer bodies to inhabit. In November, they performed at the Getty Center in Bridge-s—also part of the Modern Living series—which was curated and scored by Grammy award-winning musician and visual artist Solange Knowles, featuring Cooper-Moore.

“I am excited to explore more of the France contemporary dance community and learn as much as possible from my mentors,” Royale said. “Having this grant allows me the freedom to dive fully into my work and give it my complete attention, which is truly a luxury as an early career independent artist. I am very grateful to the Arts Foundation of North-Rhine Westphalia and Pina Bausch Foundation for this honor.”

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Title photo: Constance Mensh