Cat’s Paw 2019

An Experimental Aerial Dance Meeting


A very spontaneous decision…


January 2nd - 6th 2019
Košice, Slovakia

Earlier this year I discovered the work of Terry Sendgraff, a pioneer of aerial dance in America. I was amazed that I had not heard of her before now. So much of how she approached teaching and performance resonated with me. This among other things has inspired me to collaborate with one of my favourite aerial pioneers, Ariadna Vendelovawho is an artist based in Košice, Slovakia, to create the Cat's Paw.

We connected through Instagram and immediately recognised in each other something we ourselves felt missing - a deeper philosophy, a spiritual aspect in aerial dance. We started a shared document to discuss our thoughts and ideas. In the Summer of 2018, we finally met at Les Rencontres de Danse Aérienne in France, where I took classes with Ariadna for 1 week and was further inspired by her earthy passionate personality, connection with body, nature and sensuality and her vigorous choreographical creativity. 

Back in Dublin, Creation Aerial’s own Monika Palova (Slovakian based in Dublin) and I were training hard together and talking about dreams, plans and philosophies around our aerial practice and creativity. Monika talked a lot about the Slovakian nature as being intrinsic to her creativity and how much she longed to spend time in the Slovakian mountains again. 

I was also longing to connect the wilds of nature with the studiousness of my aerial work. I posted something on Instagram stating - “I just want 1 week with the rope” - and immediately Lena Selivanova from Aerial Silk Vienna replied saying “me too”. And so, the Cat’s Paw idea began to form. 

Dublin, Slovakia, Vienna are all places that have no history in Aerial Dance or Acrobatics. We are in a unique position to invent it afresh, from a personal and cultural point of view, but we are also without peers or support for this practice. The international element of this meeting is designed to provide support to each other and recognition of our work, through this physical meeting. Cat’s Paw 2019 is a pilot project and we hope it could become an inaugural international meeting for Aerialists who want to try doing things differently. 


A meeting for Aerialists who:

are or feel isolated creatively or geographically

have an interest in critically engaging with their practice

want to find new methodologies

want to establish an intention for their creativity throughout the year 2019


Use the time together to share methodologies

Critically engage with our work

Share experiences and thoughts regarding our current practice

Give ourselves time to explore, create and set practice intentions going forward

Create a manifesto for the coming year

Present an open studio/ public sharing of our processes or anything else we want to share

We are currently in discussions with three cultural spaces in Košice, all of whom are open to hosting. An initial two days spent in the wilds of Slovakia’s forests near Kojšov is planned for: dancing, fire building, long walks, writing, and discussions. The energy of the wild and inspired material will be brought to the studio for the remainder of the time, culminating in an open studio, public sharing of our discoveries in Košice. 

Coming together at the beginning of the year is symbolic. It is powerful to do something strong at the very beginning of the year and so the 2nd – 6th January have been chosen for Cat’s Paw 2019. 

Artists committed to attending and participating in Cat’s Paw 2019 are primarily from Ireland, Slovakia and Austria. The maximum number of participants is fifteen of which currently four are committed.