About this Artist
Ana María Alvarez, a 2020 Doris Duke Artist and an inaugural Dance/USA Artist Fellow, is a prolific choreographer, skilled dancer, masterful teaching artist, and movement activist who has achieved multiple accolades for her dynamic works. Her thesis work explored the abstraction of Latine dance, specifically Salsa, as a way to express social resistance as related to the U.S. immigration battle. This work became the impetus for founding CONTRA-TIEMPO Activist Dance Theater in 2005 in Los Angeles. Her most recent work with the company, ¡Azúcar! was commissioned by NC State Live in Raleigh. Alvarez and CONTRA-TIEMPO have continued to tour “joyUS justUS” (2017). This signature work is a radical celebration of humanity and the feminine, centering joy as a more loving and just future is imagined. Her work has been presented in theaters across the country and the world, including in Germany, Bulgaria, Cuba, Bolivia, Ecuador, Chile and El Salvador. She was selected as the 2018 BiNational Artist in Residence, connecting communities in the Sonoran Desert, Phoenix (U.S.),
Douglas (U.S.), Tucson (U.S.), and Agua Prieta (M.X.), through leading artistic workshops, collaborative performances, and public talks, and concluding with a performance at the U.S.-Mexico border. Alvarez and CONTRA-TIEMPO were also invited to represent the best of American Contemporary Dance Abroad through The Obama Administration’s U.S. Department of State cultural exchange program, produced by BAM, DanceMotionUSA. In the Fall of 2022, Alvarez was invited to join the UC San Diego Theatre and Dance Department as a tenured faculty member. In this exciting new chapter of her career, Alvarez, in collaboration with her colleagues and students, is imagining and designing a new future for embodied performance and practice at UCSD.
Alvarez has been recognized with a number of awards and grants including NEFA’s National Dance Project, the National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures, LA City Department of Cultural Affairs, Los Angeles County and the California Arts Council among others. She is the recipient of the Mujeres Destacadas award from LA Opinion and a Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival Rainbow Award for her work with CONTRA-TIEMPO called “Agua Furiosa.” She received a Bachelor of Arts in Dance and Politics from Oberlin College and a Master of Fine Arts in Choreography from UCLA’s Department of World Arts and Cultures. Alvarez lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two children.