Courtney May Robertson (Scotland, 1992), is a performer and interdisciplinary maker based in Rotterdam. Courtney graduated from The Scottish School of Contemporary Dance in 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts - First Class Honours in Contemporary Dance Performance. Upon graduating she joined Club Guy & Roni’s Poetic Disasters Club (NL, 2013) and has since worked with a number of choreographers across Europe.
Since 2017 Courtney has performed in multiple works of Belgian choreographer Jan Martens. For her role in RULE OF THREE she was named ‘Female Performer of the Year 2017’ by Sceneweb (FR), and in 2018 ‘The first heroine of La Bâtie’ in Geneva (CH). Courtney performed in any attempt will end in crushed bodies and shattered bones, which premiered at Festival d’Avignon in July 2021 followed by an extensive international tour. Most recently, she collaborated with Martens on his latest work VOICE NOISE which is currently touring internationally following the premiere at De Singel Antwerp in March 2024. In 2021 Courtney began working with Austrian choreographer Florentina Holzinger. First on Festzug, a parade for the opening of the Wiener Festwochen with musician SOAP&SKIN, and later on a large-scale theatre performance, A Divine Comedy, which premiered at Ruhrtriennale (DE) in August 2021.
Alongside working as a performer, Courtney began experimenting with creating her own work in 2015. Between 2015 - 2019 her small-scale / DIY produced performances were shown at various underground venues in the Netherlands. In 2019 her work entered the theatre for the first time with ‘SUB’; a research project in collaboration with Tharim Cornelisse. Courtney’s own creations typically stem from a sociopolitical topic that touches her personally in a visceral way; the controversial sport of ‘horse taming’ (the pleasure of stepping off a horse when it’s moving at full speed, 2020), the ethical debate surrounding ‘generative art’ (THE WOMAN DESTROYED, 2022), and the theory of The Monstrous Feminine’ which reveals the history of misogyny in the horror genre (HUNTER, 2024). In these solo works, Courtney studies the ‘grey zones’ that exist between certain rigid dichotomies that dominate (western) society. She believes that the widely spread social pressure to define or position oneself in a world rife with binary thinking, often results in a loss of ambiguity and nuance. Courtney seeks to challenge such binaries and give space to spectrums, complexities and perhaps contradictions that those encompass.
Though Courtney trained as a dancer, the moving body is always in sincere dialogue with the other mediums she chooses to work with. For example, in ‘the pleasure of stepping off a horse when it’s moving at full speed’ she engages in a battle of sorts with video footage that acts as the singular light source for the performance. In ‘THE WOMAN DESTROYED’, she invites audiences to experience the unfolding of events simultaneously with her, as she responds to the demands of a digital system in real time. In ‘HUNTER’, she more literally engages in a physical duet with a puppet, a life-sized artificial replica of herself.
Courtney does not per se aim to communicate a clear standpoint in her performances, but instead is more interested in inviting audiences to engage with the questions that she finds herself stimulated and often perplexed by in her research processes. She aims to create emotionally charged sensorial universes that deal with complex themes in a rounded way; that evoke feeling first and thought thereafter. There is a raw, rough, gut initiated energy present throughout her work, perhaps influenced by her long engagement in the underground punk / metal music scene. In contrast, that wild unfiltered expression is mixed with a certain affiliation with discipline and structure, likely stemming from her background in competitive cheerleading and upbringing in a military environment. This paradox results in an eclectic blend of chaos and order in Courtney's work. 

Courtney sees herself as a nomadic maker and enjoys collaborating with different production houses in different ways. Her work is self-produced with the support of Dansateliers, Dans Brabant, ICK Artist Space, and as of July 2024 she will embark on a two year trajectory with the Grand Theater Groningen. For the concept of
THE WOMAN DESTROYED Courtney was awarded 'De Troffel Prijs' 2020 - Festival Cement’s incentive prize for young makers - and nominated for Het Theater Festival Belgium’s equivalent; 'Roel Verniers Prijs'. In 2021 she was awarded the 'Young Amsterdam Art Prize', and in 2022 was selected for 'Aerowaves Twenty22'. In 2024 HUNTER was nominated for the 'VSCD Mime / Performance Prize'. Courtneys recent work has been financially supported by Stimuleringsfonds, Gemeente Rotterdam, AFK, Fonds 21, Kickstart Cultuurfonds and NORMA Fonds.

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