performance projects luke murphy dance gortnaclasha
Luke Murphy
Resume: Luke Murphy Drenched 2012 - Luke Murphy

Luke Murphy and Gortnaclasha

Originally from Cork in Ireland, Luke is a performer and choreographer currently based between New York City and Ireland.

In 2012 Luke chose the moniker "Gortnaclasha" as an umbrella for his choreographic and collaborative projects.


In 2002 Luke was supported by the Legat Fund to train at the Legat Ballet School at St Bede's in East Sussex, England. In 2005 he received scholarships from Point Park University and the Bank of Ireland Millennium Scholars Trust to attend Point Park's Conservatory of Performing Arts in Pittsburgh where he studied with Doug Bentz, Judith Leifer Bentz, Jason McDole and Mark Taylor and earned a BFA in Dance and English in 2009. In 2007 and 2008 Luke also attended the school at the American Dance Festival in Durham, NC with support from the ADF Scholarship Fund and the Arts Council of Ireland's Travel/Training Award.


After moving to New York in 2009, Luke performed with Punchdrunk in award winning productions of "Sleep No More" in Boston ('09-'10) and New York ('11-'12), with Martha Clarke in "Angel Reapers" ('10-'11) and John Kelly in the 2010 revival of "Pass The Blutwurst Bitte". In addition Luke has danced with Jannis Brenner and Dancers, Heidi Latsky Dance, Erick Hawkins Dance Company and in projects with Sean Curran, Douglas Dunn, Bill T Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company and many others. He is currently working with Kate Weare Company and Pavel Zustiak's Pallissimo whilst his his first film project 'Five Dances' directed by Alan Brown and choreographed by Jonah Bokaer recently premiered at the Dance On Camera Festival at Lincoln Center.


In 2009 Luke was selected to present work at the New Moves Contemporary Dance Festival as part of the Emerging Choreographers Program at The Kelly Strayhorn Theatre. As well as premiering two additional pieces at New Moves in '10 and '11, Luke has presented his work throughout NY at venues such as DanceNow Joes Pub, Lamama Moves Festival, Danspace St Marks Church, Construction Company, The Flea, Greenspace, DNA wip, 60x60, Webster Hall and Silk City Arts Festival. He has received support through residencies and commissions from Step Up Project (Partner Organisations: University of Limerick, Arts Council of Ireland), DanceIreland, Tribeca Performing Arts Center, Duo Multicultural Arts Center, Firkin Crane, Dragons Egg, Shawbrook School, KHDT, Revolve Dance Theatre, International Youth Arts Festival and Kelly Strayhorn Theatre. His first evening length work "Drenched" premiered at the Absolut Fringe Festival, Dublin Sept 20-22 2012 and toured to the Kelly Strayhorn Theatre, Pittsburgh Nov 2012 and will be presented as part of the Lamama Moves Festival July 5-7 2013.

In 2013 Luke was commissioned by Maiden Voayge Dance Company in Belfast to create a new work based on Stravinsky's Les Noces in collaboration with composer Christian Fredrickson. The work titled "Fragile Ghosts, Mild Acquaintances" will premiere Feb 7th at the MAC in Belfast and tour throughout Northern Ireland, in June 2013.

He will premiere a new evening length quartet based on the story of Icarus at the Cork Midsummer Festival, June 2013.

Collaborators Past and Present

  • Carlye Eckert
  • David Fishel
  • Ching I Chang
  • Phil Atkins
  • Cassie Shafer
  • Emily Diers
  • Ian Spring
  • Natalie Mackessy
  • Christian Fredrickson
  • Leslie Kraus
  • Adam Wile


"Murphy's dance-making can match sharp words with edgy moves any day. There is edited pace and clean lines in Eckert and Murphy's passionate, full force body exchange and their lifts, body wraps, floor tussles are handled with a mesmeric control, equally as arresting as anything on screen. Star rating: ****"
-Seonna Mac Reamoinn, Irish Theatre Magazine, Sept 23rd 2012.

"The performances themselves are strong enough to take all of the irony bound up in the multimedia and pitch it against something creatively solid and engaging. Very little is left unexplored- the dance builds to a vigorous crescendo, creating striking imagery along the way. ****"
- Sinead Finnegan,, Sept 24th 2012.

"A movement to Luke Murphy and his dancer Carlye Eckert, high quality athletic, masterfully designed, vibrant tones that unexpectedly enchant the eyes of the audience. A play set in a well-articulated poetic tale...One of the finest performances of this year's festival!"
- Roberta Bagnali- Sipario Magazine,(trans. from Italian), Sept 23rd 2012.

"His athleticism is impressive, but his comfort with bringing emotion into his work, without drama, is even more inspiring.. Simple gestures combined with incredibly concise yet fluid floor work gave the phrasing a meditative quality.. Murphy's work is not to be missed."
- Adrienne Totino, The Dance Examiner, July 8th 2012.

--- also listed as #3 in the top productions of the year in Pittsburgh by the same reviewer:-

"3. "Drenched" by Luke Murphy: The Kelly Strayhorn Theater hosted Murphy, a Point Parkgraduate who now splits his time between NYC and his native Ireland. This honest and beautiful duet about romantic relationships impressed me with its heavy dose of realism, at times hilarious, but mostly moving."

"A powerful strength coupled with intricate attention to detail in movement made this show stand out. An emotional performance through movement with music and background speech adding to the effect. Dealing with the destructive nature of natural disasters, Luke gets the room's undivided attention as he expresses himself through dance. This was a truly mesmerising show.*****"
- Bethany Pochin, Three Weeks Edinburgh Magazine, Aug 11th 2012.

"Driftwood adds a cheeky humour and poignancy..Driftwood is the show for those who say they don't like dance: it kicks off in the disco - Luke Murphy is hilariously uncomfortable strutting his stuff, until the training asserts itself and he throws down a groove. Suddenly disaster strikes, he tumbles and the remainder of the show has him struggle to rescue the personality that only moments before was a fool on the dance floor. An evocative spoken word interlude, reflections on childhood, the spectre of natural disasters. It's like a short twenty minute essay on identity in the face of nature's immensity, and an object lesson on the power of choreography to express grand ideas in a small time and space."
- Gareth K Vile, The Vile Blog, 8th Aug 2012.

"Murphy presents a personal work, a fearless solo piece of physical theatre. Completely investing, both physically and through his presence he gives us an emotive performance exploring the power of vivid memories. ****"
- Jo Turbitt, Across The Arts, Aug 8th 2012.

"Luke works seemingly with everybody (Kate Weare, Martha Clarke, Pavel Zustiak, Sleep No More) - his amazing twitchy movement quality makes it unsurprising that he's one of the current most busy dancers."
- Leigh Witchell, New York Post - June 8th, 2012

"Luke Murphy also returned (for the third time) with a solo where he was very cool yet hadn't lost the social conscience he has always displayed. His theatrical sensibilities have become more contemporary and more profound as he works his way through a career in New York and Ireland.
In a way, his career seemed to be moving parallel to the growth of NewMoves -- onward and upward."
- Jane Vranish, Pittsburgh Post Gazette, May 18th 2011