Sen Hea Ha

choreographer and dancer

Since age four Sen Hea Ha has been studying traditional and contemporary Korean dance, with an emphasis on ritualistic dance forms and ceremonial expressions. She is a graduate of the Arts Department at Kyungsung University and has worked with the Baegimsae Dance Company in Korea. In 1993 Ha moved to the United States. She earned her M.A. in Dance Ethnology at UCLA in 1996, completing her thesis on Korean American shamanism in Los Angeles, and her M.F.A. in choreography/performance at UCLA, receiving the Outstanding Graduate Student Award (Dance) from the National Dance Association.

As a performer and choreographer, Sen Hea Ha has performed in a variety of local and international venues. She has shown her own work at the Kaleidoscope Dance Festival in Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Women Festival, at LACEs Twisted Spring Dance Series, at the Southwest Regional American College Dance Festival (ACDF) in Arizona and Long Beach, and at California Plaza.

In 1997, Ha was invited to Wuppertal, Germany, to study with Pina Bausch. There she had the opportunity to participate in workshops and teach Korean dance to the company. She performed in Peter Sellars opera production Le Grand Macabre at Chatelet Theatre du Paris, France, Oedipus Rex/Symphony of Psalms at the Salzburg Festival (1994) and in Het Muziektheater, Amsterdam (1998), and is again invited by Peter Sellars to dance in an opera production at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, London, Great Britain.

In 1998, Sen Hea Ha was invited to choreograph and perform in Solo, Central Java and at the Makassar Dance Festival in Ujung Pandang, Indonesia. In June 1999, she performed with Paul Thompson at La MaMa E.T.C. Theatre in New York City and presented her own contemporary work at the festival Hammoniale 99 in Hamburg, Germany.

In 2001 Shaksfin Asia produced the world premiere of Sen Hea Has Labyrinth, her first own work as choreographer to collaborate with traditional dancers from the Kraton palace in Solo which was premiered at the Singapore Arts Festival and which was later presented in Berlin and Munich. Due to the big success at the Singapore Arts Festival Sen Hea Ha was re-invited to the Asia-Europe Dance Forum which took place in January 2002 in Singapore.