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Graduate Fellows

Kiran Bhumber
MA Program in Media Arts

Kiran Bhumber is a media artist, composer, musician and educator from Vancouver, Canada. Her work examines emotions and memory through the physical nature of sound. Kiran constructs interactive installations and performance systems; allowing performers and audiences to embody these themes through multimodal states of awareness. As a CWPS Graduate Fellow, Kiran conducted research for the development of “ The Electronic Shawl” or “E-Shawl”, a wearable electronic textile that aims to envelop South Asian cultural identity, tradition, andmemory within the present digital realm.

AJ Covey
MM Programs in Percussion Performance and Chamber Music

As a CWPS Graduate Fellow, AJ Covey traveled to Karnataka, India and Bali, Indonesia to conduct preliminary research in musical pedagogy of non Western cultures. AJ’s research interests include the exploration of Eastern music pedagogy methods and ideas to help music teachers in the US cultivate a connection between musical study and self identity, love, life, culture, humanity, and Earth.

Laura-Ann Jacobs
PhD Program in Educational Studies

Laura-Ann Jacobs is a doctoral student in the School of Education at the University of Michigan. She explores how performance and expression can be integral parts of learning. The focus of her CWPS Graduate Fellow project is learning how local Hawaiians perform their local Hawaiian identities, and investigating how these performances of local Hawaiian identities counter, challenge, and disrupt the destination image of Hawaiian native culture.

Ruby MacDougall
PhD Program in Asian Languages & Cultures

Ruby MacDougall is a professional ballet and contemporary dancer with an MA in Chinese studies from the University of Hawaii, and almost a decade of experience engaging in intercultural exchange with Chinese dancers. Her current research looks at how identity and culture are embodied or resisted through the corporeal performance of ethnic minority dance forms in China.

Ellen Myers
MA Program in Southeast Asian Studies

Ellen Myers entered the Masters Program in Southeast Asian Studies after previously studying Indonesian dance, gamelan, and living in Indonesia as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant. As a CWPS Graduate Fellow, she is exploring the ways in which Facebook contributes to new and imagined spaces of freedom or confinement for young Indonesians.

Sydney Shiff
MFA Program in Dance

Classically trained dancer and choreographer Sydney Schiff began rigorously studying and practicing Brazilian Zouk in 2016. During her CWPS summer research, she will conduct preliminary ethnographic field study of international influences on Brazilian Zouk dance movement and culture in Canada and Europe.

Adam Shead
MM Program in Improvisation

Adam Shead is an American Improviser, Percussionist, Composer, and Electronicist specializing in improvised and interdisciplinary performance. Adam has performed at renowned venues domestically and internationally such as The Jazz Showcase, Experimental Sound Studio, The Whistler, Bimhuis, and De Ruimte as well as performing at such festivals as The Present is Present in Amsterdam and The Chicago Jazz Festival. Adam has had the pleasure of performing with such musicians as Mary Oliver (ICP Orchestra), John Dikeman (William Parker, Joe McPhee), Jasper Stadhouders (Ken Vandermark, Andy Moor), and Ed Sarath; and is the founder of such groups as Dod Kalm, Adam Shead Octet, and The Adam Shead String Quartet. His current research looks at the way in which improvisational communities function and inform their meta-community from a Performance Studies perspective.

Fabiola Torralba
MFA Program in Dance

Fabiola Torralba is a choreographer, educator, and activist that is dedicated to the transformation and empowerment of our communities.  With deep commitment of the power of story and the power of people coming together, she facilitates opportunities for movers of all backgrounds to create and engage in issues that affect their every day lives. Fabiola's current research focuses on Afro-Mestizo and Black (im)migrant identities in the southern coastal region of Mexico.

Alyssa Wells
PhD Program in Musicology

Alyssa Wells is a musicology PhD student whose primary research focuses on socialist realism in the German Democratic Republic. As a CWPS Graduate Fellow, she is also researching the performance and rehearsal practices of drum and bugle corps in Netherlands and Japan, seeking illuminate how members of the groups Jubal and the Indigoes understand their relationship to their drum corps and its members, the community in which they are based, and the drum corps community as it is conceived globally.