Michelle E. Parkins

Lecturer

Michelle E. Parkins
615-898-2640
Room G040A, Murphy Center (MC)

Degree Information

  • M.F.A., University of Texas, Austin (2012)
  • A.B., Washington University (1994)

Biography

Chell Parkins has had a career as a dance educator, choreographer, performer and dance scholar that has spanned over 20 years. She has danced with MADCO in Missouri, Steamroller and Bibliodance in California, Forklift Dance Works in Texas, and alongside Jack Black in the film Bernie.  She has collaborated with El Colegio del Cuerpo in Colombia and performed solo works at the Millennium Forum in Northern Ireland and at ZAWP and AZALA in Spain.  Since 1995, her choreography has been f...

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Chell Parkins has had a career as a dance educator, choreographer, performer and dance scholar that has spanned over 20 years. She has danced with MADCO in Missouri, Steamroller and Bibliodance in California, Forklift Dance Works in Texas, and alongside Jack Black in the film Bernie.  She has collaborated with El Colegio del Cuerpo in Colombia and performed solo works at the Millennium Forum in Northern Ireland and at ZAWP and AZALA in Spain.  Since 1995, her choreography has been featured at Dancers’ Footwork and Cell Space in California and in MOMFest, Frontera Fest, Dance Carousel, Coen’s New Works Festival, and Big Range Festival in Texas. As a graduate student, Chell began interweaving technology with dance through investigations of a disembodied versus an embodied choreographic process. Her investigations led her to work with Merce Cunningham's DanceForms, virtual technology, and motion capture while studying the effects of technology on cognitive development. She was invited to be Artist in Residence at AZALA and ZAWP in La Sierra and Bilbao, Spain where she experimented with virtual and corporeal travel. Her performed research involved site specific dance video footage created with the GoPro camera and edited in Final Cut Pro that was manipulated in live performance using the Microsoft Kinect, Isadora and Delicode. Chell recently spent three years as the director of dance and drill team at Manor High School in Manor, Texas where she taught students to use dance as a vehicle to overcome trauma and build positive communities. Students used technology in the classroom on a daily basis while exploring cultural identity and social issues through dance. While at the high school, she was a consultant and pilot teacher for Dance and Media Communications, a course in Texas public schools that guides students through a process of creating transmedia dance works.  Chell continues to write about her experiences in the public school using technology in collaboration with a feminist pedagogy underpinned by tenets of Pedagogy of the Oppressed. Her publications include “Dance Media Collaborations:Engaging At Risk Youth” which was published in the June2016 edition of Dance Education In Practice and “Dancing on the 50-Yard Line: A Feminist Perspective of Drill Team” which will be published in the premiere on line issue of Women In Dance. Chell holds a Masters of Fine Arts degree from The University of Texas at Austin and a Bachelors Degree in Arts and Sciences from Washington University in St Louis.

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