Leslie Goes To Grad School!!!

Hi everyone,

So after ten incredible years dancing professionally with the Kate Weare Company, Punchdrunk’s Sleep No More and The Drowned Man, Keely Garfield, Kurt Hayworth and a range of other incredible artists, I have been awarded a scholarship to the University of Washington to begin studying towards a Masters of Fine Arts in Dance.  

This graduate program is so prestigious and I am so very excited and honored to be given the opportunity. Taking only three candidates a year we have been invited to teach, study and reinvent our careers. While the scholarship fully covers all tuition costs, many financial responsibilities remain such as University fees, books and various other supplies which add up quickly and become somewhat substantial. The huge cost of moving across the country including flights, a new apartment and furnishings and general living expenses are also all in front of me. While the intense and immersive nature of the program is extremely exciting it does also make the prospect of  outside employment  completely unviable.

This campaign is designed to give me the time and space to keep my focus on what’s important and to get the very most out of this incredible opportunity. Any help  would give me some breathing space to concentrate on my studies.

The field of study I want to explore is the fascinating and unexpected overlap between medical and dance training. The students I will be working with at the University of Washington are mostly students of science and many will enter the medical field. I am fascinated by recent studies and articles that examine the correlation and compatibility between a dancers and a doctors brain. I aim at exploring this relationship and build towards what I believe will be both a unique module of study for those in the medical field and an exciting and original application of the skills and training of professional dancers.  

When I visited the college, the students were telling me about how dance has influenced their consideration of the nature of touch and the importance of connection with between people on an intimate and sophisticated level.  I love the idea of teaching future doctors, nurses and surgeons to be embodied people and how the many skills of dance can translate into a more healthy and productive relationship between medical staff and patients.

Below I have included photos and video excerpts from my past ten years of dancing in New York, London, Ireland and throughout the US.  I am so honored and thankful for such a rewarding and exciting career so far and look forward towards an equally exciting next phase.  

A huge thank you to Kate Weare Company for being my home for eight years.  My passion for this company and its people is infinite.  Thank you to Punchdrunk and the massive brilliant community that produce and live in these full bodied and mind blowing shows.  And thank you to Kurt Haworth, Robbinchilds, Jason Somma, Alex Beller, Luke Murphy and Keely Garfiled for all the incredible works I had the opportunity to inhabit and live inside.  Thank you Lily Ockwell for being the brave soul to come with me into my own choreography:).  Lastly, thank you to my supportive family and friends.  I am so thankful for all this love.

Thank you to all of you who read this.  I truly appreciate any and all contributions, however small or large.  I live, breathe and love dance and to have this opportunity to reinvent my relationship to dance is one of the greatest gifts I have ever received.  

Your help can make it possible.

Thank you

University of Washington Graduate Program

Excerpts from Kate Weare Company "Bridge of Sighs"

Excerpts from Kate Weare Company "Lean To"

Kate Weare Company "Garden" 2011 photo: Keira Chang

Kate Weare Company "Dark Lark" 2013 photo: Keira Chang

Punchdrunk "Sleep No More"

Kate Weare Company "Lean To" 2009

Punchdrunk "Sleep No More" 2012 photo: Christopher Duggan

Punchdrunk "Sleep No More" 2012 photo: Christopher Duggan

Luke Murphy "Icarus" 2013  photo: Hope Davis

Luke Murphy "Icarus" 2013  photo:  Hope Davis

Kate Weare Company "Bright Land" 2010  photo:  Keira Chang

Kate Weare Company "Brightland" 2010  photo: Keira Chang

Kate Weare Company 10 Year Anniversary Concert 2015  photo: Keira Chang

Kate Weare Company "Garden" 2011
photo:  Keira Chang
Kate Weare Company rehearsal for "Dark Lark" 2013 photo: Keira Chang


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Leslie Kraus 
New York, NY
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