Mariana Valencia

Mariana Valencia works through dance. She was born in Chicago amidst multicultural collaboration, went to college with a vast constellation of queers in Massachusetts, and in 2006 moved to New York to live as a choreographer. Her studies in dance and ethnography influenced her early works that were wedded to postmodern dance, afro-diasporic, and pan-latin forms. Over the years, Valencia’s work has turned in on herself, making self-narrative performances that evoke algorithmic imagery consisting of choreography, ethnography, memoir, and observations of her cross-cultural identifiers. She’s performed nationally and internationally in Norway, the Balkans and the UK. Valencia has held numerous residencies and received awards for her choreography, the most notable being the 2023 Creative Capital Award, a 2019 Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Extended Life grant, a 2018 Bessie Award for Outstanding “Breakout” Choreographer, a 2018 Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grant to Artists Award, and a 2015–16 Jerome Travel and Study grant; she was also an artist in the Whitney Biennial 2019. Valencia’s choreography and work reaches beyond the stage: in 2019, she published two books of performance texts, Mariana Valencia’s Bouquet (3 Hole Press) and Album (Wendy’s Subway)

Multidisciplinary artist, Jazzy Romero was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA. She lives and works in New York City where she received a BA from Hunter College in 2021. Romero is a member of various music production and performance collectives, among them, COQUETA, which she formed in 2019. Romero’s work explores memory and familial experiences through the intersections of performance, music, and visual art. Her work has been presented at MOCA Geffen and Frieze Art Fair (LA); MoMa PS1 and Performance Space New York (NYC); and Miami Basel (FL).  Her solo show, “Servicios Express,” a presentation of film, ceramic sculptures, and performance was presented at La Pau Gallery in 2022 in Los Angeles.

Choreographic Fellow | March 18-31, 2024


Visiting Artist Mariana Valencia is coming to MANCC for the first time, as part of a multiyear residency structure, to further develop her latest project Arrival. As an improvisation project that surrenders to the unwitnessable through openness and freedom, Arrival is a practice of presence rather than production and projection. Choreographer Valencia and interdisciplinary artist and musician Jazzy Romero’s improvisation adapts to what’s physically possible in a pandemic time – losing the bodies we once had has led to this inquiry. Arrival is a performed experience, finding hope in the potentiality of refracture, and is a we/us exchange between Valencia and Romero as they create, revise and surrender to their forms in real time. Through improvisatory scores of choreography, music and text, Arrival ruminates on the return to shared space and unresolved grief; it is an embodied interplay between performative polish, rawness, rigor and distress. The practice is arrival, a constant showing up, and a promise to embodied practice.

  • Photos Coming Soon

Collaborators in Residence: Jazzy Romero [Musician]

Featured Artist

Faye Driscoll

February 22 - 24
Carolina Performing
Arts, UNC Chapel Hill


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