Raissa Simpson’s PUSH Dance Company Builds Vibrant Contemporary Dances To Gain A Deeper Understanding Of The Challenges Attributed To Mixed Heritage.


In Conversation with Hannah Young

PUSH Dance Company is proud to present choreography by Hannah Young on September 20-22, 2019 for PUSHfest Program A at ODC Theater in San Francisco. Photo by Kena Frank.


Tell us a little bit about your dance background.
Growing up, I took classic little-kid dance classes, and then my parents decided to put me into Irish Step Dance. Once I left the house, I found modern dance, fell in love, and haven’t looked back. Here in the Bay I’ve been lucky to find a great community where I can learn and grow as an artist.

What can audiences look forward to seeing in your work at PUSHfest?
I think this work is a little tangly–I have the most fun watching the moments where the dancers are kind of all just caught on each other. I think there’s something to pull out in how the movement changes from jumbled to ordered.

What are the major sources of inspiration for your choreography?
I draw a lot from personal experience and my attempts to work through what’s going on in my life. I’m constantly absorbing the dance created around me, and I also like to pull from film in the stylization of my work.

If you hadn’t chosen this career, what might you have been doing in your life?
I work as a fundraiser for a dance organization–if I weren’t making dance, I’d still be doing my best to stay around it and to support other dance artists.

What advice would you pass on to an aspiring choreographer?
Lean into who you are.

Learn more:
@hannahsayswhy on instagram or hannahsayswhy.myportfolio.com