Love Notes From the Skeletons in My Closet

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Love Notes from the Skeleton in My Closet

We all have something to hide. We all know the fear that your deepest secrets will be revealed. We fear that the identities and worlds we have created for ourselves will be destroyed if anyone ever knew the truth. From embarrassing stories to deeper secrets about sexuality or past trauma, we all have a skeleton waiting in our closet.

What if those skeletons could talk?

Love Notes from the Skeleton in My Closet is an evening-length duet created through a collaboration between Nicole Lawson and Dylan Reddish. Reflecting on their experiences with mental health disorders, Lawson and Reddish explore the cost of living with secrets and the process of learning to accept yourself and your worst moments. Focusing on the cyclical nature of mental health disorders, they use humor and candor and to express the frustration of learning to live with a mental illness and the fear of having others discover your weakness and vulnerability. Throughout the piece, Lawson and Reddish use movement to wrestle with their failings and maladaptive patterns and acknowledge the absurdity of thinking that normality as a possibility for existence. To this end, the collaborators experiment with tools of random selection, such as random number generators and drawing movements out of fish bowls, to create movement that captures the winding pathway toward being “OK” and the disappointing realization the “OK” is a status that will constantly be renegotiated throughout our lives.

Throughout the piece, the audience will see the collaborators vacillate between attempting to shove their skeletons to the back of their messy closets and welcoming the notes that ask them to accept even the things they hate about themselves. They will become angry with themselves and each other. They will lift each other up and tumble to the floor. All in the name of discovering whether their skeletons mean them good or ill or whether they just want to be acknowledged and accepted for what they are – evidence of their humanity.

About the Artists

Dylan Reddish grew up in Salisbury, MD. Her journey in dance started at Footsteps Dance Academy where she studied classical ballet, jazz, and traditional Irish step dance. In 2015 Reddish graduated from UNC Greensboro with a BA in Sociology and minor in dance. At UNCG she discovered modern dance and began to perform in the Triad. Reddish has performed with the North Carolina Dance Festival, Greensboro Fringe Festival, the Charlotte Women’s Showcase, the American Dance Festival, Nickerson-Rossi Dance East, Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company, and many more! Currently, she is a member of JOYEMOVEMENT Dance Company. She is a dance educator at Mineral Springs Elementary, Dance Project, and Triple Threat Dance Center. When she’s not creating dance with her friends or her students, Reddish likes to run, spend time in nature, or curl up to a good book with her cats and husband. 

Nicole Lawson, Artistic Director of Nicole Lawson Dance Projects, is a dancer, choreographer, teacher, and activist working in the Piedmont Triad community of North Carolina. As a choreographer, her work investigates the pathways between injustice and hope. The company’s first performance, “I am not a Monster,” was presented in Greensboro, NC at the Greensboro Project space on November 2 and 3. Additionally, Nicole was selected as part of the inaugural class Artists in Residence with the Greensboro Dance Project in January 2018.