Robin Prichard History

Robin Prichard is an international artist/scholar who strives to present inscrutable, unruly dancing bodies in order to reveal the complexities of bodies in motion. As a performer, she danced with Guggenheim award winners Victoria Marks, Donna Uchizono, and David Rousseve, danced with Opera Australia, and performed works by Doug Varone, Doris Humphrey, Paul Tylor, and Mark Morris. She has been hailed as “a significant contemporary artist with an expressive vocabulary and an entrancingly total engagement” (Dance Australia). Her choreography, “noted for its wit and vulnerability” (L.A. Weekly), has been seen at American Dance Festival, Movement Research/Judson Church, Joyce/Soho, Guggenheim Museum Los Angeles, The Sydney Opera House, The Kennedy Center, American Dance Guild, Highways, Dance/USA, and other national and international venues.  She has won awards and fellowships including an Australian Federation of University Women Fellowship, the Kahn Fellowship, the Harkness Award, Ohio Individual Artist Award, and Puffin Individual Artist Grant. Her commissions include Parramatta Riverside Theaters (Australia), State University of New York, Morehead State University, Dublin Arts Center, the intergenerational company The Dance Generators, and University of Western Sydney. Her most unlikely commission was for American Idol, where she served as the choreographer and performer via motion-capture for the interactive video game.

Her scholarly and choreographic interests straddle the worlds of contemporary concert dance and Indigenous dance. She started creating professional choreography while dancing in New York; choreography was a way of claiming the indigeneity she felt she had to give up to become a professional dancer. In the following thirty years, she has created solo work, and occasionally group work, that combines Native American themes, movements, and concepts with contemporary concert dance. Her Indigeneity is defined through a blood, memory, land complex. She inherits her blood from Tsalagihi Ayeli and the Shawnee, her Indigenous memories from (non-blood) relatives of the Shawnee and Ute, and her connection to the land is Southern Ute. She received her first Fulbright Fellowship in 2002 to study intercultural choreography between Aboriginal and contemporary dance. In 2023, she received a Fulbright to Aotearoa/New Zealand to Study Māori dance innovations and indigenizing dance education. She continues to research and write about Indigenous dance to highlight these crucial American dances that have been left out of scholarship and dance curricula.

With more than two decades as a professor of dance, she has taught at Arizona State University, Australia’s National School of Dance for Aboriginals and Islanders (NAISDA), Sydney Dance Company, and Smith College. She has served as a grant reviewer for the National Endowment for the Arts and for the MAPFund, and she is a reviewer for Journal of Dance Education.  Her scholarship has been published in numerous dance education journals and books; in 2022, three books in which she contributed book chapters won national book awards. She holds an MFA from UCLA and a BFA from SUNY Purchase.

Land Acknowledgement: I honor my ancestors, the Tsalagihi Ayeli, the original inhabitants of the Southeastern U.S. I honor the original inhabitants and stewards of the land on which I live: the Wyandot, Delaware, Shawnee, Ottawa, Miami, Eel River, Wea, Chippewa, Potawatomi, Kickapoo, Piankashaw, Mingo, Seneca and Ojibwa people. I honor with gratitude the land itself and the people who lived and cared for it. I honor the plants, animals, human, non-human, and extra human inhabitants of this land and the reciprocity needed for the survival of all beings.


Graduated from SUNY Purchase with a BFA in dance.
Danced in NYC for individual choreographers, created solo work, much of it indigenous solo work, including "when sandstone sings".
Attended UCLA for MFA in Choreography; created solo and duet works, including Indigenous work "a prayer"
Danced for independent choreographers Donna Uchizono, David Rousseve, Victoria Marks, Simone Forti, and others.
Received Fulbright Fellowship to Australia to study intercultural choreography between Aboriginal and contemporary dance.
Taught, danced, and choreographed in Sydney Australia, including dancing for Opera Australia, teaching for Sydney Dance Company, University of Western Sydney, NAISDA (Australia’s National school for Aboriginal Dance). Created and performed Indigenous dance; created group Indigenous dances, such as "Creation Myth".
Held visiting positions at Arizona State University, Smith College, and Columbia College; continued to create and perform solo and duet work; performed with Victoria Marks
Dance Professor at University of Akron
Wrote "Honoring the Past, Changing the Future: Incorporating Native American Dance In Dance Theory Courses," first article on Native American dance for Journal of Dance Education
Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award
Serves on the Journal of Dance Education Editorial Review Board.
Djerassi Residency
2020 & 2022
Served as reviewer for NEA and Mapfund dance grants.
Fulbright Fellowship to Aotearoa/New Zealand for project: Maori Dance Innovations and Indigenizing Dance Education.

Bibliography of Robin Prichard’s Indigenous scholarship:

  • 2022. “Native American Dance and Engaged Resistance.” In Viewpoints/Outlooks on Dance in the USA,* edited by Elizabeth Macpherson. New York: Routledge.
    *Winner, 2023 NDEO Ruth Lovell Murray Award
  • 2022. “Masculinities and Performativities in Native American Powwow Dance.”  In Why Boys (Don’t) Dance: Intersectional Masculinities*, edited by Douglas Risner and Rebecca Watson. 145-163. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
    *Winner, 2023 NDEO | Ruth Lovell Murray Award
    *Recipient, 2023 Board of Governors Faculty Recognition Award, Wayne State University (US)
  • 2023 “Native American Intertribal Powwow Dance.”  In Cultures of Dance, edited by Lynn Frederickson and Shih-Ming Li Chang.  Human Kinetics.
  • 2021. Socially Distanced Powwows. Dance Education in Practice, 7:4, 4-9, DOI: 10.1080/23734833.2021.1988284
  • 2020. “Teaching, Researching and Writing Indigenous Dance: The Native Writes Back.” Journal of Dance Education, Aug-Sept, 20(3).
  • 2019. From Color-Blind to Color-Conscious: Advancing Racial Discourse in Dance Education.  Journal of Dance Education, 19(4): 168–177.
  • 2017. Redefining the Ideal: Exquisite Imperfection in the Dance Studio. Journal of Dance Education, 17(2): 77-81.