Master's Thesis: Social Media as a Performance Space

by Gabriela Simich in , ,


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