Amy J Lambert on isolation, marimba and fitting in

Illustration by Tom DesLongchamp

Amy J Lambert, the director and choreographic force behind AJnC Dance-Theater, channels technical rigor and a playful sense of humor into her own works and her many collaborations across the dance and theater worlds.

What show(s) are you working on this fall?
This fall I’m in research and development for a few new works, none of which have titles yet. But ideas center around using text and literature as choreographic prompts.

What fall show are you most looking forward to seeing?
I always look forward to the Fall Kickoff at Velocity Dance Center. It’s an awesome sampler and a glimpse into works I may have missed from the previous season.

What do you wish civilians knew about your job?
Working as an artist can be very isolating. When balancing multiple jobs and projects there’s rarely a consistent routine. Although you can make strong connections during projects, often when the show or rehearsal process comes to a close you can lose your sense of community and worth. I quite enjoy solitude, but isolation has a negative and recurring place in my psyche that I often struggle with.

Best (or worst) advice you ever got:
It can be hard but try to be yourself despite your brain telling you to try and “fit in” or be “cool” or “try to make something that people will like.”

I would give anything to work with:
Did you know Charlie Chaplin’s grandson is a dancer/actor/director/circus performer who makes interesting and vivid work?! In the fictional world where I get a phone call from James Thiérrée I am terrified and elated.

What is your hidden talent?
I know how to play the marimba and a variety of percussive instruments.

My one wish for Seattle is:
That folks who think they aren’t related to art or performance felt compelled to participate and attend events. Being the viewer or witness is a true and fabulous way to feel impacted and involved in the life around you.