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This project was successfully funded on January 1, 2013

Collision Theory :: reinventing the relationship between artist & audience

by KT Niehoff


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I am KT Niehoff – I live in Seattle and I make dance-dominant performance in mostly non-proscenium spaces.

Collision Theory is a 12-month performance series for audiences from one to hundreds that includes films, fashion shows, musical releases, dinner gatherings, movement installations, and the quiet exchange of handwritten letters. Collision Theory takes place throughout Seattle – it began at the 2012 NW New Works Festival, and culminates in April 2013 at On the Boards.

I think of Collision Theory as an invitation – an open love letter to the Seattle community that implores, take part in making something new.  We are creating continuous through lines with core audience members through regular personal correspondence, (a tangible “Passport” was gifted as means of tracking performances) and informal social gatherings follow most events. My aim is to provide ways of connecting, contributing, and comparing the myriad of experiences accumulated throughout the artistic journey so audiences deeply invest in its culture over time.

I am collaborating with musician/vocalist Ivory Smith and as a result of her phenomenal contribution, Collision Theory is more musically focused than anything I have made in the past. She and I are working with a great team: Hayley Young (Photography), Scott Colburn (Music and Engineering), Evan Ritter (Light) and dancers; Jul Kostelancik, Molly Sides, Emily Sferra, Sean Tomerlin and Markeith Wiley.

My formative training is in theater and music – specifically choral singing and the Experimental Theater Wing at NYU’s, Tisch School of the Arts. My dance training came post college. My works include a convergence of music, theater and dance and since 2006 have been joined by a consistent focus on audience/artist proximity – practically, metaphorically and emotionally. 

This slant has resulted in fundamental shifts of place, time and content. I have exchanged traditional stages for cabarets, bars, street corners, screens and letter writing. I have stretched time with performances scattered over seasons and films that last forever. I have become an event maker, party planner, space builder, gift giver and connection seeker. And I have talked to, touched, and known something about those I perform for.

Collision Theory is a continuation of this life’s work – an immersive artistic journey requesting an interactive evolution between artist and audience.

The money you donate today will pay these artists for the time, sweat and creative energy they infuse into this project. They are all really fantastic.

Collision Theory is unfolding as you read this. Become entangled—invest in the creation of a collective culture committed to spawning creativity, connections, and sustainable conversation. Collide.

Thank you.


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