Brenton Cheng is a movement explorer who has performed with many internationally-acclaimed and local heroes such as Contraband, Zaccho Dance Theater, Angus Balbernie, Epiphany Productions, Flyaway Productions, and many others, at such places as Jacob's Pillow, Bates Dance Festival, and the Avignon Festival in France. He teaches Laban/Bartenieff Movement Analysis, contact improvisation, and somatically-based performance skills to professional and non-professional movers in classes and workshops around the world. When not focused on movement, he supports efforts at the Internet Archive to provide universal access to the world’s knowledge.
Photo by: RJ Muna
Andrea Wang is a Chinese American musician, songwriter, and nonprofit brand strategist—a storyteller by trade. She currently works as a marketer for the de Young and Legion of Honor museums. A vocalist and pianist, Andrea has been a multi-genre performer for most of her life. She plays with the band Girl Swallows Nightingale and can be heard on their debut album, Shapeshifter.
Photo by: Jennifer Siu
Zachary Abelson is a half Chinese, half white musician originally from Cerritos, an asian immigrant town on the outskirts of LA county. He grew up playing jazz saxophone and enjoys jamming with other artists from all types of backgrounds. He spends his time with his loved ones and pondering life—always grateful for the opportunity to create and share.
Photo by: Lana Vasiljevic
Sonsherée is a dancer, choreographer, teacher, costume designer, and founder of the collaborative container, This Sweet Nothing. She enjoys making dances based on the observation of animals, landscapes, art history, and daily life experiences. Sonsherée has an MFA in performance/choreography from Mills College and from 2005-2015, she was a performing/teaching artist with AXIS Dance Company. In addition to dancing with MLD, Sonsherée has performed with Flyaway Productions, Lizz Roman & Dancers, Nancy Karp + Dancers, and more. She has taught contemporary dance in public school systems, institutions, dance festivals, and universities. Sonsherée has received an Isadora Duncan Dance Award for ensemble performance, and a Homer Avila Award for Excellence in the field of integrated dance.
Photo by: John Carnahan
Shira is a dancer, teacher, bodyworker, and facilitator. She enjoys encouraging people to be in their bodies while learning new skills, being creative, listening and adapting to the changing present moment. Shira is the co-founder and owner of Athletic Playground, a dynamic indoor place-space, inspiring physical play through a wide variety of movement classes. She offers private sessions, weekly group classes, workshops, bodywork sessions, and yearly retreats. In addition to dancing with MLD, Shira has performed with Scott Wells & Dancers, Sebastian Grubb/BodyWagging, Zoe Klein Productions, and more.
Photo by: Maurice Ramirez
GIRL SWALLOWS NIGHTENGALE
Girl Swallows Nightingale was hatched when Marica Petrey wrote too much music for one of her fantasy film projects and made it the perfect excuse to start a band in Oakland. With songwriting inspired by Japanese folklore, anime, science fiction, and epic saga, GSN conjures a cinematic experience, painting a vivid musical canvas that shifts its colors between modern rock, jazz, theater, funk, and pop, to underwater soundscapes and dreams of outer space. In addition to leading GSN, Marica is an award winning filmmaker, a journalist for CALIFORNIA Magazine, and founder of RADIX Troupe Productions.