Amy Saunder learned to dance in Harare, Zimbabwe, where she was born, and moved to the United States in 2002. She studied ballet at the North Carolina School of the Arts under the tutelage of Ethan Stiefel and after graduating, she went on to train with North Carolina Dance Theatre and Richmond Ballet. Amy has danced professionally with The Suzanne Farrell Ballet, Eugene Ballet, BalletNext, Traverse City Dance Project, Eglevsky Ballet, and Ballet NY. She has been freelancing in New York City since 2016, performing for companies like Gleich Dances, Brookoff Dance Repertory Ensemble, and MorDance. She co-founded konverjdans with Jordan Miller and Tiffany Mangulabnan in 2016.
I spent the first eleven years of my life in Harare, Zimbabwe, and this is where I learned to dance. I had the most adventurous childhood (thanks to my parents) and some of my fondest memories are of swimming in the cold streams of Nyanga and of building sand castles on the coast of the Indian Ocean in Mozambique.
Still, my biggest adventure has been with dance; I’ve always been a dancer. I started when I was about two years old, and it’s the only thing I’ve ever wanted to do full-heartedly in my life. The chase for this dream has fueled my entire existence and is the reason I live in New York City today.
Before I moved here I was living a rather nomadic lifestyle, jumping from state to state in search of stability and happiness in my career. I lived in Maryland, North Carolina, Oregon and Virginia, and I danced for companies I thoroughly admire: The Suzanne Farrell Ballet, Eugene Ballet, Richmond Ballet. But it wasn’t until I moved to New York City that I truly found freedom and joy in my dancing. I felt the buzz of the city influencing me, and I met and became friends with several other artists in different fields. I opened my eyes to new sights, and my mind opened too.
Whilst in New York I have had the chance to work with a few different companies, including BalletNext, Eglevsky Ballet and Ballet NY, and with every choreographer I work with I am given a new look and perspective into the beauty, strength and vulnerability of ballet.
All of these events are the stepping stones that have led me to this very moment - a moment I never thought would happen, where I have become a co-creator of a brand new company. This is my biggest adventure yet, and I’m overflowing with excitement at the chance to dive in headfirst, explore, and experiment (and probably fail a few times) with my two best friends, Tiff and Jordan, for whom my heart overflows with love everyday. I don’t know what the future holds for konverjdans, but I do know that this city has taught me how important it is to keep creating art, so that’s what I’m going to do. - A