I am an environmental choreographer inspired by place. I respond to the world around me, a world that changes and evolves and lies beyond my control. In other words I make work in the midst of life happening as opposed to being isolated in a studio. My sense of place includes objects, people, and the historical and psychological situations confronting me and these elements become the source material for my dances. My artistic choices are influenced by my experiences in the world such as travelling, reading and raising my family. And my family responds in turn. We are a creative colorful expressive highly connected tribe of five.

Soon after being accepted to the Masters Program of Choreography at UCLA I discovered I was pregnant. My daughter was with me during all of my coursework and my performance thesis incorporated high chairs, wading pools and her sweatshirt with a lizard spiked back. My first successful production “Laundromatinee” was created during this time of domesticity and I was fond of saying, “you can’t create art in a vacuum, only with one!”

Today my children are grown and live individual lives. Creative problem solving, a love of learning, curiosity about their world and empathy for the other continue to be driving forces in their development. I am told I am an empty nester, but it isn’t so. My company, my choreography, the characters I create provide me with pleasure and push me to new artistic discoveries.

Heidi Duckler