Shannon Woods


Learn more about Shannon Woods, a dance artist, writer, educator, administrator and Ph.D in Performance as Public Practice candidate.

Shannon Woods (she/her) is a dance artist, writer, educator and administrator. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Theatre with a specialization in performance as public practice from The University of Texas at Austin, with an anticipated degree in 2025. Prior to this, she received an M.A. in Performance Studies from New York University Tisch School of the Arts in 2019 and a B.A. in English and World Literature and a B.F.A. in Dance, both magna cum laude, from Marymount Manhattan College in 2015. In spring 2022, she completed her portfolio in Women's and Gender Studies. Woods previously served as a research editor and contributor for Dance Media’s online and print publications, Dance Magazine, Pointe, Dance Spirit and Dance Teacher. Woods has presented at various academic conferences, including Dance Studies Association Conference, Mid-America Theatre Conference, Center for Women's and Gender Studies Conference and the University of California, Los Angeles Center for Performance Studies Conference. She has also contributed to creative works, including serving as co-dramaturg and co-choreographer for the Texas Theatre and Dance Studio Production: kin • song: ode to disability ancestors in fall 2021 and servings as a dramaturg during The Cohen New Works Festival. Furthermore, she has a background in ballet and freelance contemporary dance, performing with Work Horse Dance Project in works choreographed by Alexandra Cook and De Funes Dance. She was a Ph.D. Career Pathways Fellow in 2022, interning with the arts and culture nonprofit Texas Folklife, where she currently serves as the special programs convener. As a dance and performance studies researcher, Woods examines the intersection of choreography, public safety and the police state. She is interested in investigating “performances of protection” and their relationship to national identity and panic, as well as the ways in which the body can rehearse for crisis and perpetuate threat. She received the College of Fine Arts Graduate School Academic Excellence Fellowship for 2023–2024 to continue her research.


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