• "... her sophisticated sense of movement counterpoint sustained interest in her formal patterning."

    – Lewis Segal, LA Times

  • "Seda is a poetic genius."

    – Jodie Gates, Vice Dean/Director, Glorya Kaufman School of Dance

  • "Aybay displayed choreographic flair and a cutting-edge sensibility."

    – Victoria Looseleaf, LA Times

  • "Kina is a powerful and intense work... ."

    – Jeff Slayton, See Dance

  • "Kybele Dance Theater performed … for an entranced audience."

    – Michael Ray, Santa Monica Mirror

  • "As each couple danced, you seemed to be watching a summary of a complex relationship swiftly,
    lightly impressed upon your consciousness."

    – Lewis Segal, LA Times

  • "Plunging squats, deeply arching backs and lush turns ..."

    – Claudia La Rocco, New York  Times

  • "I have been to to the westside’s Theatre Raymond Kabbaz on several occasions over the past few years, and I have never saw it so packed as it was for last week’s performance by Kybele Dance Theatre!!!"

    – Karen Salkin, itsnotaboutme.tv

  • "Seda Aybay’s work is rich with movement, purpose and thought-provoking images. "

    – Jeff Slayton, LA Dance Chronicle

  • "... the movement was all so beautiful ..."

    – Karen Salkin, itsnotaboutme.tv

  • "Kina has beautiful moments and extraordinary dancing."

    – Jeff Slayton, LA Dance Chronicle

  • "Aybay shone throughout the piece, using her breath as an intense extension of her physicality ... that shook me to my core; and, her performance was matched by the rest of the cast."

    – Taliah Mancini, LA Dance Chronicle

  • "...impressive technicality ..."

    – Taliah Mancini, LA Dance Chronicle

  • "[Seda Aybay] is a beautiful dancer with a commanding presence."

    – Jeff Slayton, LA Dance Chronicle

  • "The entire company was technically stunning and impassioned in their performance ..."

    – Khayla Jordan Golucke, LA Dance Review

Seda Aybay

Artistic Director / Choreographer

 

Born and raised in Istanbul, Turkey, Seda Aybay founded Kybele Dance Theater's (KDT) in Los Angeles in 2003 and as the Artistic Director and Choreographer, she has produced, choreographed and performed multiple works.

Seda’s works have been toured and presented nationally and internationally in locations including Los Angeles, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Seattle, New York, and Istanbul, Turkey. Seda has been in residency at USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, Cal State Fresno and a recipient of the Marcus Residency at Washington University in St. Louis. Seda has choreographed and/or taught for NYU Tisch School of the Arts, Santa Monica College, Notre Dame Academy, Cerritos College, Pierce College, and LACSA, to name a few. She has choreographed/performed at the Staples Center four times and for commercial and music videos in both the US and Turkey. Seda was featured on KCAL channel 9, Univision Kmex34, and twice on Fox 11 News with her unique global perspective and eclectic dance background. Before starting her own company, Seda performed with Ney Nava Dance, Praxis Project, Lion's Pounce Theater, Lula Washington Dance Theater, Megan and Jeffrey Hornaday, Kin Dance, Bethune Theatre Danse, Paradigm Dance Theater and many others.

Seda is currently producing new works for Kybele Dance Theater alongside teaching modern dance classes at Santa Monica College as an Adjunct Professor, intensives and choreography for Debbie Allen Dance Academy, open classes at Danceline LA and various master classes. As a Horton Certified Teacher, The Ailey School, Seda can teach strict Horton as well as her own unique style of contemporary with Horton influence. Additionally, she prepares young students for Spotlight, Youth America Grand Prix (YAGP), Elite dance competitions as well as college dance auditions with both training as well as original choreography. Her students have been invited to perform her work numerous times at YAGP finals in New York, and won first place in Elite Dance resulting in her students receiving scholarships for various distinguished schools and intensive programs such as Alvin Ailey, Alonzo King Lines Ballet, Netherlands Dans and more. 

 

 

Artist's Statement

 

I am inspired to create works that build bridges between genders, races, cultures, and communities with themes and concepts that are relatable to each and every person. Born and raised in Istanbul, Turkey I grew up traveling all over the world being exposed to different cultures, traditions, and stories. Settling in Los Angeles with its multicultural DNA has created a perfect platform to share these stories. As a young artist, these experiences led me to find common ground connecting to many cultures, and I began to create different works with this perspective.

My desire is to awaken the audience’s emotions, spark imagination, and accent forgotten moments of life through a fusion of contemporary dance with deconstructed Turkish socio–cultural references and ideologies. I transform figurative language and ideas into gesture while infusing the DNA of my culture into movement vocabulary that also incorporates whispers of pop and lock, Afro-Cuban, and Indonesian. My work unites fearless physical risk-taking with moments of beauty and surprise as well as a dose of the unusual and bizarre.

The stage is my canvas where every moment should look like a painting filled with complex detail and composition. Lighting and costuming have always been an integral part of my vision alongside my choreography to create depth and architectural design on stage to accentuate the magic of live performance.  Striving to bring contemporary dance to the forefront of expression, I hope to inspire future generations of art lovers.

 

 

Awards

2019 Cultural Trailblazer, Department of Cultural Affairs, Los Angeles

2018 New Movement Residency, USC Glorya Kaufman International School of Dance

2018 Marcus Residency, Washington University in St. Louis

2018 Outstanding Choreographer, Las Vegas Youth America Grand Prix

2017 Outstanding Choreographer, Las Vegas Youth America Grand Prix

2016 McCallum Choreography Festival - 2nd Place

2016 Front and Main Festival - 1st Place

2016 Outstanding Choreographer, Los Angeles Youth America Grand Prix

2015 Elite Original Choreography Award

2011 RAW Los Angeles Performing Artist Award

2009 Dance Under the Stars Festival – Small Group Choreography Award

2007 MAD BAD Festival – Performance Award

1996 – 1997 Three national First Place prizes in Milliyet Choreography competitions, Istanbul

 

 

 

Seda Aybay