Jill Sigman

Jill Sigman is a choreographer, performer, improviser, and teacher. Trained in classical ballet, modern dance, analytic philosophy, and the visual arts, Sigman has been making dances and performance installations since the early 90s. In 1998 she founded her company jill sigman/thinkdance as a vehicle for these artistic experiments. In the same year she received her Ph.D. in philosophy from Princeton University.

Sigman juxtaposes physical movement with elements such as video, text, and light to create layered landscapes of meaning that explore pressing questions of our time. To engage audiences as intellectual partners, she has gravitated to alternative spaces, socially conscious topics, and work that plays with the boundaries of dance.

Born in Brooklyn, Sigman was trained extensively in classical ballet at the Joffrey Ballet and Ballet Center of Brooklyn. She discovered modern dance at Princeton University where she received a Certificate in Theater and Dance and studied with Ze’eva Cohen, Jim May, Mark Taylor, and Sally Hess. Sigman went on to perform with Ze’eva Cohen Chamber Projects before forming her own company. She has also been rehearsal director of the Belgian Irma Vandenbroucke! Danstheater and has collaborated with the Brooklyn-based collective Red Dive.

Known as a compelling solo performer, Sigman has created numerous solo shows. "Sigman is riveting," the Village Voice wrote of Vision Begins, "an elf with the rebelliousness of the '60s avant-garde, the piscine fluidity of a Tharp dancer, and the charisma and athleticism of today's virtuosos." Her work for large groups grows out of her exploration of solo performance.

As an educator, Sigman gives workshops in technique, improvisation, composition, and dance theory, as well as educational presentations at colleges, high schools, and community centers. She has been a member of the dance faculty at Princeton University, a Movement Tutor at the Imaginary Academy in Grozjnan, Croatia, a professor of aesthetics at Brooklyn College, and a frequent guest teacher in Belgium. Sigman writes and lectures on art theory and has been published in The Journal of Philosophical Research and Midwest Studies in Philosophy, and profiled for her integration of body and theory in the Serbian feminist journal Pro Femina. She has been a guest editor of the Movement Research Performance Journal.

In 2003, Sigman left 200 texts about why she makes art around NYC- in buses, phone booths, public bathrooms, and supermarket freezers.

Choreographic Fellow | October 9 – 23, 2005


Sigman mined solo movement material for RUPTURE, a multi-media dance developed to capture the personal, local, and global senses of breaking and healing that hang in our air. She also experimented with new ways of presenting her work and choreographic process. Through public events with other company members and the creation of a short video based on the documentation of these events, Sigman researched new formats for introducing her work to audiences without the resources and context necessary for a full-scale production.

RUPTURE premiered at Danspace Project on February 8-11, 2007. 

Collaborators in Residence: Eric Breitbart [video artist + editor]; Victoria Murphy, Anna Brady Nuse [dancers]

Featured Artist

Faye Driscoll

February 22 - 24
Carolina Performing
Arts, UNC Chapel Hill


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