Keith Hennessy is an independent artist-scholar-activist-teacher dancing in and around live performance. Born in northern Ontario, he lives in San Francisco since 1982 and tours internationally. His performances engage improvisation, ritual, collaboration, and protest as tools for investigating political realities. Practices inspired by anarchism, critical whiteness, post/Modern dance, activist art, the Bay Area, wicca, punk, contact improvisation, indigeneity, and queer-feminist performance motivate and mobilize Hennessy’s work. Keith’s 2016-17 collaborators include Peaches, Meg Stuart, Scott Wells, Jassem Hindi, J Jha, Annie Danger, Gerald Casel, and the collaboratives Blank Map and Turbulence. Awards include the Guggenheim Fellowship, United States Artist Fellowship, a NY Bessie, multiple Isadora Duncan Awards, and a Bay Area Goldie. Recent gigs include New Tretyakov / VAC Foundation (Moscow), Impulstanz (Vienna), Warsaw Flow Festival, TBA Festival (Portland), Movement Research (NY), American Realness (NY), and the colleges UC Riverside, San Diego State, and Hollins.
Keith’s recent teaching in universities, independent studios, and festivals includes Ponderosa (Germany), FRESH (SF), HZT (Berlin), Movement Research (NYC), Impulstanz (Vienna), Portland State University, Sandberg Institute (Amsterdam), St. Mary’s, and MA Exerce (Montpellier France). Keith’s writings have been published in Contact Quarterly, Movement Research Journal, Performance Research (UK), Society of Dance History Scholars Journal, Dance Theatre Journal (UK), Itch, Front, and In Dance. Hennessy directs Circo Zero and was a member of Contraband with Sara Shelton Mann. He is a co-founder of CounterPULSE (formerly 848 Community Space) a thriving performance space in San Francisco. He earned an MFA and PhD from UC Davis.