Courtney May Robertson (Scotland, 1992), based in Rotterdam, is a performer and maker working across Europe. She graduated from The Scottish School of Contemporary Dance in 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts - First Class Honours in Contemporary Dance Performance. Courtney has worked as an interpreter for various choreographers, directors, filmmakers and visual artists over the years. Upon graduating she joined Club Guy & Roni’s Poetic Disasters Club in Groningen (NL) where she performed works by Guy Weizman (now director of Noord Nederlands Toneel), Roni Haver, Edan Gorlicki, Adam Peterson and Hendrick Aerts. Later she went on to work with, amongst others, Konzert Theater Bern (CH, 2014), Conny Janssen Danst (NL, 2015), Cie. Woest (BE, 2016), Jan Martens (BE, 2017) Connor Schumacher (NL, 2019) and Coralie Vogelaar (NL, 2020).
For her role in Jan Martens' RULE OF THREE she was named ‘Female Performer of the Year 2017’ by Sceneweb (FR), and in 2018 ‘The first heroine of La Bâtie’ festival in Geneva (CH). Her second production with Martens’, any attempt will end in crushed bodies and shattered bones, premiered at Festival d’Avignon (FR) in July 2021 and is currently touring across Europe. Most recently Courtney worked with Austrian choreographer Florentina Holzinger on two projects; Festzug a parade for the opening of the Wiener Festwochen 2021 with musician SOAP&SKIN, and a large-scale 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 and gallery spaces in The Netherlands including Bob Smit Gallery Rotterdam, Hoboken, Garage Café, The New Current, The Performance Bar and De Geheime Tuin. In early 2019 she began exploring the crossover of choreography and technology in the context of the SUB Research Project together with Tharim Cornelisse. Research residencies were provided by CAMPO Ghent, Dansateliers Rotterdam, CLOUD/danslab Den Haag and Dansmakers Amsterdam as part of the New Adventures program.
2020 marked a significant step in Courtney’s trajectory as a maker when she was awarded De Troffel Prijs 2020, Festival Cement’s incentive prize for young makers, for her solo performance THE WOMAN DESTROYED. She was also nominated for Het Theater Festival Belgium’s equivalent - the Roel Verniers Prij.
THE WOMAN DESTROYED is due to premiere in February 2022 and will tour thereafter. The project was co-produced by ICK Artist Space / Dansateliers and supported by Dans Brabant / Grand Theater Groningen. Next to TWD, in November 2020 Dansateliers commissioned a short solo work the pleasure of stepping off a horse when it’s moving at full speed. To date, the work has been presented at Why Not x Julidans: OFF VENUE, Freshly Made, HBS Fest Rotterdam, and Frascati Theater Amsterdam. The film adaption was shown at Come Together #6 in Frascati in March 2021. the pleasure of stepping off a horse when it's moving at full speed, was selected for Aerowaves Twenty 2020.
As a trained dancer Courtney's work starts with the body, but spans numerous disciplines including video, generative art and writing. She sees herself as a nomadic artist and enjoys collaborating with different production houses in different ways, alongside continuing to work as an interpreter for other makers. Both THE WOMAN DESTROYED and the pleasure of stepping off a horse when it’s moving at full speed are part of her broader study into the widely spread phenomenon ‘the relentless desire to dominate’ - ranging from the micro; a patriarchal figure in the nuclear family, to the macro; totalitarian governments.