Olivia Shaffer

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Olivia Shaffer

Olivia Shaffer is a performer, choreographer, and teacher from Vancouver, BC.

Olivia’s movement philosophy and teaching is shaped by her extensive background in Contact Improvisation (CI), contemporary dance, improvisation, somatic practices (including Laban Movement Analysis & Bartenieff Fundamentals), and Pilates.

Olivia holds a BFA and a Liberal Arts Certificate from the School for Contemporary Arts at Simon Fraser University. Olivia teaches CI regularly at EDAM Dance in Vancouver. Additionally, she has taught CI at Leviathan Studios, SFU, Douglas College, Modus Operandi, Polymer DanceSeattle Festival of Dance Improvisation, the Berkely Jam, and the University of the Philipines

As a choreographer, Olivia is interested in creating living, embodied work, rooted in structured improvisations. By using the mediums of movement and performance, she aims to assimilate the human condition by harnessing emotions, probing paradox, and forming ephemeral yet penetrative bonds between audience and artist. Olivia considers movement as a metaphor for our ever-seeking nature, while experiencing continuous loss. Olivia has worked as a dance artist for over a decade, creating dance independently and performing with companies such as EDAM Dance, MACHiNENOiSY, and Helen Walkley, among others. 


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Olivia has trained daily in CI since 2011 under master teacher Peter Bingham, and has been performing with his company, EDAM Dance, since 2014. She has also studied CI with Alicia Grayson, Karen Nelson, Sara Shelton Mann, Andrew Harwood, Ray Chung, Chris Aiken, Frey Faust, Leilani Weis, Ruslan Baranov, John Faichney, Martin Keogh, Angelika Doniy, Delia Brett, Daelik, and Anne Cooper.