Rosemary Candelario writes about and makes dances engaged with Asian and Asian American dance, butoh, ecology and site-related performance. She was awarded the 2018 Oscar G. Brockett Book Prize for Dance Research for her book Flowers Cracking Concrete: Eiko & Koma's Asian/American Choreographies (Wesleyan University Press 2016) and received the 2022 Mid-Career Award from the Dance Studies Association.
Tell us about the classes you’ll be teaching this year.
I’m currently teaching TD 388, Research Methods and Resources for graduate students (MA, MFA, and PhD) across the Department of Theatre and Dance. In spring I will be teaching TD 387D, Practice as Research, which is again a graduate level course.
What attracted you to the Department of Theatre and Dance and The University of Texas at Austin?
The amazing faculty and strong students really attracted me to UT T&D. I’m excited to join a community committed to care-full and rigorous praxis that is joyfully collaborative and intentionally and ethically engaged with the worlds around us.
How did your professional pathway lead to your focus?
I had another career in sexual and reproductive health education and advocacy for over ten years before I went to graduate school. When I started looking into graduate school, I initially considered Master of Public Health programs because that made sense for what I had been doing. But one day I had lunch with a friend who said to me, “You’re always dancing. If you’re going to spend the time and money on graduate school, don’t go for the practical degree, go for your passion.” I never looked back after that conversation! From then on, my experiences as a dancer and an activist have formed the foundation of my research. But serendipity has also played a role as well. A chance conversation with another dancer in between rehearsals for an Urban Bush Women Summer Leadership Institute performance led me to the World Arts and Cultures department at UCLA. There, Eiko & Koma were in residence my first quarter, and I ended up writing my dissertation and my first book about them. Since then, I’ve shaped my research agenda around the things I want to spend my time doing (like dancing outdoors) and things that I just keep coming back to in my mind (like a little known collective of Asian American dancers).What’s something that students and colleagues should know about you?
If it’s not in my calendar, I will forget! Also: I have a snack drawer in my desk.
What do you enjoy doing when you’re not teaching/researching/working?
I love to travel, and I love that my research often affords me the opportunities to do so! I also love seeing performances, going to museums, going to the movies, basically anything that lets me be around creative folks and be inspired by artists. (Hmm, again that sounds a lot like research!) I also love hiking, cooking and eating good (vegetarian) food, hot springs, and being around water in general.