Watching the Clock (2017) 

Length: 40 min

Venues: Triskelion Arts Fall Split Bill Season, Movement Research at the Judson Church Winter Season

Choreography/Performance/Costume & Prop Design: Alyssa Gersony

Sound Engineer and Practical Effects Consultant: Connor McAlpine

Music CreditsDepth of my Soul by Thievery Corporation ft. Shana Halligan, In Heaven (Lady in the Radiator Song) by Peter Ivers and David Lynch

Author CreditsLife Doesn't Frighten Me At All by Maya Angelou, excerpts from Surrealist Women by Penelope Rosemont

AboutWatching the Clock is inspired by the poetic and visual art work of Surrealist artists Kay Sage, Simone Yoyotte, and Sheila Legge. Through rigorous physical interrogation with handmade masks, puppets and props, the work juxtaposes fragmented performance histories with lived, visceral conflict. It confronts notions of failure and control embedded in her personal history, while reaching for states of psychoanalytic embodiment as a means to transcend fear. This 40-minute, interdisciplinary work serves as a metacommentary on European-aesthetics in contemporary dance, childhood trauma, and self-coercion. Set for a proscenium stage presentation, Watching the Clock takes audiences on a journey of episodic and unforgiving memory.

this place with the pretty-sounding name (2015) 

Length: 14 min 30 sec

Venue: Work Up Emerging Artist Series at Gibney Dance

Choreography, Performance, Sound: Alyssa Gersony  

Outside Eye: Carmen Scott

Music Credit: Sound sampled from: Unforgotton: 25 Years After Willowbrook, directed by Jack Fisher in 1996, and Willowbrook: The Last Great Disgrace produced by Albert T. Primo and Geraldo Rivera on ABC in 1972.

The work’s primary influences include personal and historical accounts of the tenure (1947-1987) and subsequent deinstitutionalization of the Willowbrook State School, a state-supported live-in facility for children with disabilities located in the Willowbrook neighborhood on Staten Island. The themes of violence, memory, anonymity, and states of consciousness helped shape the physical rigor and research of the piece. The work is layered with sounds from everyday life – laughter, whispers, and private spaces. It features stories from Geraldo Rivera and family members of individuals admitted to Willowbrook. The final work is a palimpsest of stories, sounds, bodies, politics and events: an exploration of our relationship to otherness.

Truck / Duck (ongoing)

Length: varied

Performance: Alyssa Gersony

This piece is a Fluxus-like choreographic score that can take place in any Goodwill Store. The score involves finding a “duck”, 2 chairs, and then sitting and waiting for someone to listen to the "Truck/Duck" poem. My research interests for this work interventionist performance and allowing kinesthetic memory to inform performance in improvisation. 

Section 4

This performance needs to change

This performance hopes to change

This performance promises change

This performance questions change

it changes

Section 5

I would like to sit here just a little

bit longer

But I’m afraid of taking up time

Please give me a reason to sit here

and I hope that I’ll change my mind

not every show needs a plot (2012)

Arizona State University, BFA Dance Thesis

Performance & Choreography: Alyssa Gersony

The piece is an improvisational score with two parts.Both parts have evolved out of my personal interest in sign language, dialectical processes in relation to social interaction, and Laurie Anderson’s most recent book entitled “Night Life”.

“I’m trying to cut pearls into small pieces, but they keep skidding out from under the knife, when I cut them with scissors they pop and scatter, some of them are obviously fake, some seem like they might be quite valuable”

Part 1- “Map the space”

Part 2- “Trust the body to search for something to say”

Practicing: availability, wakefulness, awareness

a performance will dissolve (2012) 


Arizona State University, Interdisciplinary ChoreographyThesis

runtime: 25 minutes

choreography, light/costume design: Alyssa Gersony
Performers and collaborators: Jessica Bartholomew, Julie Arrendendo, Elisa Garibay, Brigitte Steinken

A Performance Will Dissolve is structured into two parts; the first is an original composition and the second is an improvisation. This piece is focused on two research questions:

What is performance?

How do people support one another?