Catherine Cabeen, MFA, is an artist and teacher. She directed her interdisciplinary performance company Hyphen from 2009-2019. As a choreographer, Cabeen has received commissions from On the Boards, Donald Byrd’s Spectrum Dance Theater, Seattle Art Museum, Gallery Galleon in Vieques PR, the Visa2Dance Festival in Dar Es Salaam, Alsarab Dance Company in Byblos Lebanon, and Texas Women’s University, among others. In 2011, the New York Times called the work of Cabeen's Hyphen, “highly kinetic, complex... visually exquisite,” and “beautifully performed.”
Cabeen was a finalist in The A.W.A.R.D. Show! Seattle: 2009. During the summer of 2011, she was Emerging Choreographer at Bates Dance Festival. Cabeen’s 2011 evening-length work Into the Void, commissioned by On the Boards in Seattle, was documented for On the Boards’ on-line performing arts library. The full work can be seen at ontheboards.tv. Hyphen's other evening-length works include: Fire! 2013 commissioned by On the Boards, Where They May 2013 commissioned by Seattle Art Museum, Framed 2014 commissioned by the Mahaney Art Center, Arts Triangle 2016 commissioned by Texas Women's University, and the self produced 2018 Give Me More.
In 2019, Cabeen shifted away from the company model in order to focus her energies on teaching as a form of activism. However, she still performs and creates, most visibly in Glitter in the Gutter, a two-woman comedy show, regularly performed, and continuously developed and revised, with her rhinestone encrusted collaborator, Kristina Berger.
Cabeen has received support for her choreographic work from the Seattle Office of Arts and Cultural Affairs, 4 Culture, The Washington State Arts Commission, the National Performing Network Creation Fund, The Bernstein Foundation, The Mellon Foundation, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and generous individual donors.
Cabeen is a former member of the Bill T Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company (1997-2005), and was Jones’ Assistant Choreographer on the original production of Spring Awakening at the Atlantic Theater. She is also a former member of the Martha Graham Dance Company, and Richard Move’s MoveOpolis!, among others. In Seattle, where Cabeen was based from 2006-12, she performed in her own work and as a guest artist with Donald Byrd’s Spectrum Dance Theater.
Cabeen is currently an Associate Professor of Dance at Marymount Manhattan College (MMC) and a repetiteur for the Bill T Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company. She has been on the faculties of the Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance, Cornish College, University of Washington, and Middlebury College. In her time at MMC, Cabeen has created numerous new courses for the college that explore dance and embodiment through the lenses of race, gender, and social justice. Cabeen has been an active member of the college’s Action Committee for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, since its inception in 2017. In addition to teaching at MMC’s main upper East Side campus, Cabeen teaches at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility, a maximum-security prison for women, through MMC’s prison education program. Cabeen's engagement with Somatic approaches informs her use of mindful, kinesthetic pedagogy in one on one, and group, classes with a wide array of dance and non-dance students, including those who are justice-impacted.
Cabeen is also a Somatic Coach and Mentor. She has studied Vinyasa Yoga and meditation for 26 years and became a certified yoga teacher with OM Yoga in 2005. She has practiced and performed Contact Improvisation for over twenty years working with artists such as Nancy Stark Smith and Bill T Jones. She began her study of the intersection of experiential anatomy and environmental activism in 2014 with Andrea Olsen. Cabeen is honored to have worked with Martha Eddy and Dynamic Embodiment since 2018, becoming a Registered Somatic Movement Therapist (RSMT) and Dynamic Embodiment Practitioner (DEP) in 2021. She is currently in training (class of 2023) to become a Certified Mindfulness Meditation Teacher with Tara Brach and Jack Kornfield. Cabeen combines these skills with her experience as a professional dancer and choreographer in her one on one work as a somatic coach and mentor for student and professional dancers and non-dancers.