Emily Coates

Emily Coates's picture
Professor in The Practice of Theater and Performance Studies, Professor in the Practice of Directing at the David Geffen School of Drama

A dancer, choreographer, and writer, Emily Coates has performed internationally with New York City Ballet, Mikhail Baryshnikov’s White Oak Dance Project, Twyla Tharp, and Yvonne Rainer. Career highlights include three duets with Baryshnikov, in works by Erick Hawkins, Mark Morris, and Karole Armitage, and the span of Rainer’s work, from 1961 to the present. Moving across disciplinary and cultural divides, her performance work has been commissioned and presented by Baryshnikov Arts Center (2010), Ballet Memphis (2011), Carnegie Hall (2014, 2018), Danspace Project (2015, 2017, 2018), Works & Process at the Guggenheim (2016), University of Chicago (2017), Yale University Art Gallery (2018), Wadsworth Atheneum (2018), and Performa (2009, 2019), among other venues. Among her collaborators are Lacina Coulibaly, Sarah Demers, Liz Diamond, Josiah McElheny, Will Orzo, Emmanuèle Phuon, and Yvonne Rainer. Awards and fellowships include the School of American Ballet’s Mae L. Wein Award for Outstanding Promise; Baryshnikov Arts Center’s Martha Duffy Memorial Fellowship; Alfred P. Sloan Foundation grant for the Public Understanding of Science, Technology, and Economics; a 2016 Fellowship, Center for Ballet and the Arts; and a 2019 Dance Research Fellowship, Jerome Robbins Dance Division, New York Public Library for the Performing Arts. A frequent guest teacher and speaker, her writing has appeared in TDR, Theater, PAJ, Peak Performances Journal, programs for the Paris Opera Ballet, and in the Oxford Handbook of Contemporary Ballet (2020). With physicist Sarah Demers, she is co-author of Physics and Dance (Yale University Press 2018). Since 2006, she has been responsible for the development of the dance studies curriculum housed within Theater and Performance Studies at Yale. In 2011, she created the Yale Dance Lab, a co-curricular initiative that offers students across schools and programs opportunities for immersive, cross-disciplinary, interarts research in collaboration with guest artists. Currently, she is a professor in the practice and director of dance.