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Choreographer; artistic director of SHIFT>>>Physical Theater; dancer
As a dancer, choreographer and artistic director, Manuelito has been very active in Bay Area dance since founding the contemporary dance company SHIFT>>>Physical Theater in 1998.
Through SHIFT>>>, Manuelito pursues the ongoing evolution of an ensemble company whose members share equally in developing choreography, narrative and structure for each project. Under his direction, company members are encouraged to draw upon their personal experience in using dance to examine the relationships among people in contemporary culture—touching upon very real and personal levels of identity and struggle.
The company has received critical acclaim and has performed to sold-out crowds in the Bay Area, as well as in various festivals and shared programs in California. In 2004, the company was nominated by the Isadora Duncan Awards Committee for Best Ensemble Performance for the project Giving Strength to this Fragile Tongue.
SHIFT>>> has been awarded grants from the American Composers Forum (2003, 2005), Zellerbach Family Foundation (2003, 2005), William and Flora Hewlett Foundation (2005), and Theater Bay Area-CA$H (2006). The company is currently resident at ODC Theater in San Francisco.
Born in the Philippines, Manuelito has worked with such artists as Jean Isaacs, Russell Maliphant and DV8 Physical Theatre, and has appeared in works of Bay Area choreographers Nancy Karp, Joe Goode, Robert Moses, and Margaret Jenkins, among others.