Photo: © Stephen Donahue

Photo: © Stephen Donahue

THE LECTERN

Premiering at American Dance Festival | Durham, NC | June 20 & 21, 2017

Living according to rules is the demand on all of us. We are surrounded by the rules of our laws, protocols, manners and expectations. But what are these rules? What are the rules of the game we’re playing? And what happens when rules take over?  Using movement, text, sound, song, and a catwalk runway, acclaimed comedic performers, Claire Porter and Sara Juli, upend our day-to-day, necessary-to-survive, rule-rituals in The Lectern, and find the hilarious in the rule-bending of our daily lives.  "The piece maintains it’s comedic high throughout, as the women enact etiquette lessons and lecture us on proper manners. Porter and Juli are a hilarious, dynamic pair." (The Dance Enthusiast)


Photo: © Alban Maino

Photo: © Alban Maino

TENSE VAGINA: AN ACTUAL DIAGNOSIS

Premiered at SPACE Gallery | Portland, ME | October 23rd & 24th, 2015

Tense Vagina: an actual diagnosis is about motherhood- its beauty, challenges, isolation, comedy and influence on the human experience. This evening-length solo uses humor, movement, sounds, songs, text and audience participation to reveal “all that is awesome and all that sucks” when it comes to being a mother. Tense Vagina focuses on the seldom-discussed and taboo aspects of motherhood, such as loss of bladder control, libido, tears, monotony, loneliness and dildos. With an original set, Lighting by Justin Moriarty and Costume by Carol Farrell. "She had the audience laughing out loud as she lay bare her personal secrets." (The Portland Press Herald, Portland, ME).


Photo: Grant Halverson © ADF

Photo: Grant Halverson © ADF

SMALL STORIES

Created and performed with Claire Porter
Premiered at American Dance Theater | Durham, NC | 2015

Two friends in big dresses tell, retell and tell again, small stories about little events with big impacts. Music by Gioachino Rossini and Giacomo Puccini sung by Luciano Pavarotti. Costume Alteration by Carol Farrell and Lighting by David Ferri. "Whether detailing anxieties over a job interview or the frustrations of motherhood, the two had delightfully funny characterizations and zany senses of physical comedy" (The News & Observer, Durham, NC).


Photo: © Andrea Fischman

Photo: © Andrea Fischman

DEATH

Premiered at Performance Space 122 | New York, NY | 2008

Death, a dance-theater piece that addresses the taboo topic of death.  After losing her father tragically to cancer, Juli experienced first-hand our culture’s inability to deal with death.  She was amazed that something inevitable was so uncomfortable for people who, in particular, seemed to struggle to find the right thing to say and do.  In this 50-minute solo performance, Juli uses movement, text, song, gesture, sounds, humor and audience interaction to present a reflection on the awkwardness of death.  Juli was six months pregnant for the premiere adding a layer to the piece about death while pregnant with life. Directed by Chris Ajemian, Costume by Maggie Dick, and Lighting by Owen Hughes.


Photo: © Derek Anderson

Photo: © Derek Anderson

DEEP THROAT

Premiered at American Dance Festival | Durham, NC | 2006

Liar. Gossip. Hypocrite. Sara Juli reveals insider information about the administration of the arts in her “latest permutation of words caught in her throat” (Gay City News) and the movement that follows. Deep Throat reveals the gossip behind the girl. Juli, “…a light of the downtown dance and theatre scene” (New Yorker), in her newest solo Deep Throat fusing movement, text and song to expose the humor and danger in leaking information to others. Directed by Chris Ajemian and Lighting by David Ferri.  “A Dance Comic” (Durham Herald-Sun, Durham, NC).


Photo: © Rachelle Roberts

Photo: © Rachelle Roberts

THE MONEY CONVERSATION

Premiered at Performance Space 122 | New York, NY | 2006

If you risk losing everything, you stand to gain so much more in return.  In her riskiest piece ever, Sara cashes-out her entire savings account of $5,000 and gives it away to audience members as a way to overcome her “money issues”. Directed by Chris Ajemian, Costume by Roxana Ramseur and Lighting by Owen Hughes.  “A Truly Generous Performance… Onstage Sara Juli gives of herself.  And her bank account” (The New York Times, New York, NY).


Photo: © Andrea Fischman

Photo: © Andrea Fischman

SHADOW ARTIST

Premiered at The Bushwick Starr | New York, NY | 2004

Is she an artist if she spends so little time making art?  The character faces her fear of being an artist.  Lighting by Jay Maury. Shadow Artist has good bones…Her fearless audience intrusions are different interactions each time and give the piece much of its edgy immediacy and comic brilliance” (offoffoff.com, New York, NY).


HOW TO FORGIVE YOURSELF IN BED

Premiered at Williamsburg Arts Nexus | Brooklyn, NY | 2003

This piece is the reconciliation of a promiscuous past using movement, text and song. Costume by Roxana Ramseur and Lighting by Jeremy Morris.  “In her pomo vaudeville monologue How to Forgive Yourself in Bed, Juli casts herself as a zaftig, ebullient beauty in a raucously sequined swim suit who has “promiscuity issues”…its nerve is undeniable” (The Village Voice, New York, NY).


Photo: © Owen Hughes

Photo: © Owen Hughes

BURDEN

Premiered at Ontological-Hysteric Theater | New York, NY | 2003

On her grandmother’s deathbed, Sara promised she would marry a Jewish man.  Burden is the letting go of that promise as the character faces her true love for a non-Jew, and her realization that she must leave her Holocaust past behind in order to live her own life. Costume by Roxana Ramseur and Lighting by Owen Hughes.  “…some of the summer’s best work happened far from an ADF mainstage…Sara Juli’s engaging, experimental dance theater solo, Burden” (Independent Weekly, Durham, NC).


Photo: © Chris Ajemian

Photo: © Chris Ajemian

FIVE OF MY FORTY MILLION PARTS

Premiered at Dixon Place | New York, NY | 2002

Voted Best of Dance 2003 by the Independent Weekly, this work was created with the notion that, as emotional beings, our psyches are comprised of hundreds of “parts”.  This piece focuses on five universal parts: fear, isolation, shame, guilt and anger. Costume by Roxana Ramseur. “…a humerous, hyper-critical play-by-play commentary on the moves she made while making them, before arm and upper body gestures ultimately suggested that reaching for perfection is a lot like reaching for the moon” (Independent Weekly, Durham, NC).


©Andrea Fischman

©Andrea Fischman

RIGHTEOUS INDIGNATION

Premiered at Dixon Place | New York, NY | 2001

This piece marks Sara’s first dance that uses her self-developed movement-theater vocabulary.  With anger as its main theme, this work provides a platform for the character’s rage.  “…quintessential angry naked dance that everyone must have in their repertory” (Gay City News, New York, NY).