Social Media as a Performance Space
Gabriela Maria Simich
Master of Fine Arts in Dance
University of California, Irvine, 2012
Professor John Crawford, Chair
Currently, social media provides an opportunity for artists to easily share their
work. Dance artists who have an online presence can upload work that is specific for
the theater or a dance event that one must leave the house in order to fully experience.
This thesis experimented with creating dance specific for the online environment.
My thesis project asked this question: Can I build a community of my Facebook
friends through personalized dance videos? The overarching objective was to expose
my Facebook audience to dance through the use of personal media and subject matter
by using my online identity. I produced twelve short videos of myself dancing over a
three-month period. The goal of the project changed halfway through from exposure to
conversation with an online community. I aimed to trigger responses and comments
from viewers in the hopes of raising participation. I was able to gather participation
from some of my Facebook contacts on and offline, but the comments were mainly
directed to me and not to the whole group. Facebook’s structure allowed me to expose
my social media dance, but was limiting since the majority of posts made were
exclusive to me and not a community.
©Gabriela Simich 2013