Maui Arts & Entertainment

MACC Presents Series of Free Virtual Workshops Inspired by Christopher K. Morgan’s New Dance Work

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The Maui Arts & Cultural Center presents a series of five free virtual workshops available to the public from Saturday, May 15 to Friday, June 25. The series titled “TEK / TECH” shares the artistic collaborative tools used in the creation of choreographer Christopher K. Morgan’s new evening length dance, “Native Intelligence / Innate Intelligence” which will be performed at the MACC in June 2022.

  • Image courtesy of Christopher K. Morgan & Artists: TEK_TECH Workshops Christopher K. Morgan & Artists.
  • Image courtesy of Christopher K. Morgan & Artists: TEK_TECH Workshops Christopher K. Morgan & Artists.
  • Image courtesy of Christopher K. Morgan & Artists: TEK_TECH Workshops Christopher K. Morgan & Artists.
  • Image courtesy of Christopher K. Morgan & Artists: TEK_TECH Workshops Christopher K. Morgan & Artists.
  • Image courtesy of Christopher K. Morgan & Artists: TEK_TECH Workshops Christopher K. Morgan & Artists.
  • Image courtesy of Christopher K. Morgan & Artists: TEK_TECH Workshops Christopher K. Morgan & Artists.
  • Image courtesy of Christopher K. Morgan & Artists: TEK_TECH Workshops Christopher K. Morgan & Artists.

Workshop registration is via the MACC website and participants can choose to register for one or more of the five sessions. Space is limited and those applying will receive emails confirming their session. All workshops are for ages 16 and up.  

Maui audiences may remember Christopher’s performance of Pōhaku in 2016.

Working at the intersection of Indigenous informed practice (T E K : Traditional Ecological Knowledge) and multimedia technology for contemporary performance, the series shares concepts and creative tools from the visual artists, lighting designers, projection designers, cultural practitioners and movement makers creating Native Intelligence/Innate Intelligence. 

Each session involves opportunities for participants to learn from the multidisciplinary team of collaborators, as well as  moments for each participant to experiment with the tools in their artistic explorations. Materials for some sessions,  easily found around one’s home, will need to be gathered in advance by participants OR will be mailed to participants in  advance. 



1. Entwined Artistic Practices: threading personal story and culture into our work 

Saturday, May 15 at 10 a.m.

Kumu Hula Patrick Makuakāne (Native Hawaiian), visual artist Brenda Mallory (Cherokee), and choreographer  Christopher K. Morgan (Native Hawaiian) will conduct a 90-minute interactive workshop in lei-making, sculpture, and creative writing. Christopher will guide workshop participants through a creative writing exercise before Patrick and  Brenda guide participants in making a lei and a small-scale sculpture with the cloth and paper from Christopher’s writing exercise. The workshop will conclude with a special preview of Brenda’s scenic design live-streamed from the Dance Place theater, where Christopher will demonstrate how sculpture and lei-making will be incorporated into Native  Intelligence/Innate Intelligence.  

2. Experimenting With Light 

Monday, June 7 at 5:30 p.m. 


In this workshop, participants will delve into and participate in the relationship between lighting designer and  choreographer and learn principles and techniques to light their own performances at home. Guided by assistant director and company dancer Tiffanie Carson and lighting designer Peter Leibold through a hands on approach,  participants will use items already in their homes to shape and control light and color to add to their choreographic work. 

3. Crafting Aesthetic From Sensation 

Thursday, June 10 at 5:30 p.m.

In this session, participants will gain insight into the creative process of three artists from different mediums: multimedia & projections design, lighting, and movement. Projection designer Kelly Colburn, lighting designer Peter Liebold, and company dancer Abby Farina invite participants to get curious about where they pull inspiration from and what that says about their intuition and the values that guide their choice-making. Through sensation-based prompts that inform their creative processes, Kelly, Peter and Abby foster participants’ exploration in real-time, examine how each artist might create in response to one another and share ways of communicating between disciplines.  

4. Digital and Sculptural Collaboration 


Saturday, June 12 at 10 a.m.

In this workshop, projection designer Kelly Colburn and visual artist Brenda Mallory (Cherokee), will be in conversation  about concept, creative process, and collaboration. These two artists will discuss their own work and the journey of working with CKM&A to realize the visual landscape for Native Intelligence/Innate Intelligence. They’ll discuss some of the similarities and differences of working with visual imagery in the digital realm and the physical space of building set objects. Participants are invited to share in idea-generating processes with a research exercise and by creating a  miniature “set” or 3D collage that reflect some of the same methods Brenda and Kelly use in creating work. 

5. Moving Through Materials 

Friday, June 25 at 5:30 p.m.

Join costume designer Marques Marzan (Native Hawaiian) and company dancer Jamison Curcio as they invite  participants to interweave their own lived experiences through story sharing, movement making, and reflecting on one’s relationship to material objects. Moving between these activities, participants will engage in dialogue around the  importance of appreciating culture and place. 

About Native Intelligence / Innate Intelligence 

Native Intelligence / Innate Intelligence is a dance performance incorporating modern dance, hula, Hawaiian chant, and  live music to examine home and belonging. The research for the work began with questions around what it means to be  native in a time where this word is often politically charged, and yet everyone is native to somewhere. The piece  explores ideas around nature versus nurture: how does what we inherit genetically influence who we become, and how  much is shaped by our environment. Within all of these influences, where does instinct come from? Using the metaphor  of lei making for the strands of our DNA, the work looks to weave together stories from varied identities as a way to  build bridges that celebrate difference and respect unique individuality.  

With live music by electric cellist Wytold and Hawaiian chanter/percussionist Patrick Makuakane, scenic design by  Brenda Mallory, projection design by Kelly Colburn, lighting by Peter Leibold and costuming by Marques Hanalei Marzan,  the work creates a comprehensive picture of the multiplicity of identities individuals all navigate, and invite audiences to reflect on their perception of Native people, their own identities, and instinct.

The TEK/ TECH workshops are presented with the support of the County of Maui and Office of Economic Development.


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