Photo by Micah Mackenzie
Stewart/Owen Dance seeks to enrich the community of Western North Carolina with contemporary dance by building a sustainable eco-system where professional dance artists can thrive. We work toward this purpose by hosting a nurturing, inclusive work culture; providing high-quality educational programming for newcomers and professionals alike; and reflecting the area’s vibrant culture through inventive, elegant, and rigorous performances.
IN THE COMMUNITY
Stewart/Owen Dance is the resident dance company of Asheville's beloved Wortham Center for the Performing Arts and is the first company commissioned by Wortham CPA to create a new work for their MainStage series, premiering April 2023. The company leads ongoing community dance classes for adults at the Wortham CPA and provides educational programming and performances for local schools, regional YMCAs and community organizations. They believe dance has a distinct ability to heal, inspire and connect individuals from all backgrounds and experiences.
ABOUT THE COMPANY
Gavin Stewart and Vanessa Owen, a husband and wife duo, are the co-founders of Western North Carolina-based Stewart/Owen Dance. Their bespoke repertoire includes an exciting collection of contemporary choreography that’s as “sensual” (Washington Post) as it is “humorous, elegant, and wild” (Seattle Dances).
Stewart and Owen's award-winning choreography has been presented by festivals and companies across the U.S., and their careers have taken them across the globe on fifteen U.S. State Department tours to teach, perform and choreograph contemporary dance with Washington D.C.-based Company E.
In 2017 they made North Carolina their home base where they work to cultivate the craft of storytelling through movement. Working with regional dance artists, writers, musicians, and storytellers, these cross-genre collaborators cultivate the craft of storytelling through movement — even choreographing music videos for Moses Sumney, Sylvan Esso, and Ben Phantom.
S/O Dance won the Audience Choice Award at the NYC Dance Gallery Festival 2018, were commissioned as Dance Gallery 2019 Level UP Artists, are recipients of a McDowell Regional Artist Project Grant, a North Carolina Artist Support Grant and were voted "Artists Who Most Pushed the Boundaries with the Human Body" by 2020 Asheville Fringe Arts Festival. Throughout the pandemic, they focused on producing COVID-conscious dance experiences for live audiences, including drive-up performances and guided walk-along dance exhibits presented by the Wortham Center for the Performing Arts.
MEET THE COMPANY