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The Equus Projects​ /OnSite NYC

The Equus Projects creates site-specific performance works for rural and urban landscapes.

The Equus Projects

The Equus Projects creates site-specific performance works that viscerally engage with the geographic and cultural environments. Their work often brings dancers and horses into shared landscapes. Equine works are created in collaboration with local equestrians and their horses.


The Equus Projects company is a core of highly accomplished professional dancers who have extensive natural horsemanship ground skills training. Horsemanship deeply informs all choreographic content, shapes the company's Physical Listening studio practice, and lies at the foundation their teaching.


The company brings a unique inter-species lens into the dance world and beyond. The Equus Projects has taught Physical Listening sessions for the Strategic Studies think tank at the Naval War College, offered workshops at NYU Medical School, done corporate leadership training sessions, performed as the keynote event for the Creative Problem Solving Institute and taught pre-med students in the School of medicine at Stanford University.


The Equus Projects dancers are actively merging sensing and thinking inside performance works constructed as a complex interweaving of scored events and rigorous choreographic material. The performers function in a constant state of real time decision-making, drawing audiences into a state of visceral sensory awareness.

Repertory Excerpts: 2003-2013

The Equus Projects has been commissioned by The Flynn in Burlington, VT, the Myrna Loy in Helena, Mt, Saratoga Arts Festival, Perry Mansfield in Steamboat Springs, CO, River to River Festival in NYC, Bates Dance Festival in Lewiston, ME and Klinten Kultur in Hassleholm Sweden.

Meditation Without Words

The Equus Projects has produced a series of small films including a series created by filmmaker Gabe Bienczycki

​The Equus Projects produces

site-specific performances for urban landscapes in their OnSite NYC series.

Since 2012 OnSite has brought dance to plazas, parks, stores fronts, lawns, and community centers throughout Manhattan, in Brooklyn and Long Island City.

Excerpts: OnSite NYC

Even in this highly choreographed piece there are many moments when the dancers are improvising

Inter-species Encounters

Elephant Shenanigans was performed in 2014 and in 2015 and traversed over 100 city blocks in Manhattan.

During the filming of IMPRINTED in 2021, JoAnna Mendl Shaw had the opportunity to spend quiet stall time with Lorenzo, just eight hours after he was born.

The Equus Projects Interesting & Unusual  Facts

  • The Equus Projects performs works made for outdoor sites: Pastures, equestrian arenas, college plazas, city gardens and parks.

  • Equus performed on a polo field in for the Saratoga Arts Festival in 200, in an oval garden in downtown Manhattan for the NYC River to River Festival, on the banks of a canal in Ithaca, NY and as the prologue to the National Collegiate Dressage Competition.

  • Equus also performs in theaters: Most recently Equus has been touring Interspecies Journey, a theater -dance work that merges of footage from their documentary IMPRINTED and live dance and narrative storytelling.

  • In 2021 Equus filmed a documentary that followed their horsemanship training with two pregnant mares and their improvisational exploration with the newborn foals.

  • In 2014 and 2015 the company  presented a traveling performance piece titled Elephant Shenanigans that toured throughout NYC with four dancers and a giant inflatable elephant.

Elephant Shenanigans, 2014

OnSite works source content from the site history, its function in urban landscape, the flow of pedestrian traffic & spectator access.

​Equus Projects maintains a core company of dancers, who engage in on-going studio practice and are all trained in natural horsemanship.

In every performance the performers are merging precision choreography with real-time decision-making and horsemanship. strategies

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