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Abby Johnson

Bachelor of Fine Arts (Dance Performance) – with Distinction (QUT)
Bachelor of Arts (Dance) Honours – Second Class Division A (WAAPA/LINK Dance Company)

Abby is an independent dancer who has performed both within Australia and internationally. She is a founding member of MakeShift and bases herself in Brisbane. Abby was involved in Gemma Dawkins’ Fresh Ground residency during 2011, facilitated by the Judith Wright Centre of Performing Arts and performed at this venue at the culmination of the project. She also danced in Caitlin MacKenzie’s work Bodies In Waiting in both Brisbane and Canberra (Short Sweet + Dance festival). During 2011 Abby also co-devised and performed MakeShift’s The Testing Waterswithin Metro Art’s CROSS-STITCH program.

In 2012 Abby participated in a dance residency with Maya Dance Theatre, Singapore. She performed locally in Singapore and also toured and danced with the company in India and Indonesia. Whilst in Singapore, Abby presented her own work integrating live performance and dance film. Abby also performed The Present Past with MakeShift at the 2012 Brisbane Festival and a smaller excerpt of this same work at Short Sweet + Dance 2012 in Canberra.

Abby returned to Singapore in early 2013 to perform in Maya Dance Theatre’s production Release 2.0. During her time in Singapore Abby also assisted in conducting and performing for several Arts Education Programs and dance workshops for school students. She also worked closely with dancers from the Down Syndrome Association Singapore to develop and perform a professional dance work. The remainder of the year saw Abby collaborating with fellow MakeShifters to perform Three Easy Steps (Anywhere Theatre Festival), Paper Thin (DANCE. INDIE DANCE) and The Only Way Left is Right (Brisbane Emerging Arts Festival).

2014 saw Abby participating in MakeShift's first Sydney residency. This choreographic lab took place at DirtyFeet, Carlton and saw all dancers and choreographers mentored by Paea Leach. During July, Abby attended the World Dance Alliance (WDA) Global Summit as a choreolab dancer in Angers, France. She then spent one month learning from multiple teachers and choreographers at ImPulsTanz (International Dance Festival), Vienna with the help of funding from Arts Queensland.   

During 2015, Abby has performed for Iranian opera singer Shirin Majd’s production of Rebirth – Combined Art Performance (choreographed by Vanessa Mafe) both in Brisbane and on the Gold Coast.

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