No)one Art House Co-Founder Chris Emile Is Making Of-The-Moment Movement

May 4, 2021

Chris Emile, seen from the hips up, leans back and closes his eyes as his right arm reaches towards a blue sky streaked with white

Photographed by Lee Gumbs for
Dance Magazine

How he got his
start in dance:
“My mom would catch me mimicking Michael Jackson music videos throughout the house. Eventually she took me to see Lula Washington’s company in Los Angeles, and it was on after that. She enrolled me in Lula’s school, and I immediately began aspiring towards being like the company dancers.”

A standout choreographic moment:
Aluna & KAYTRANADA’s ‘The Recipe’ music video from last year. I got to cast, choreograph and really collaborate with the directors.”

Dream dancer to work with:
“Carmen de Lavallade. She is a force, and I think mature dancers have a depth that is highly undervalued.”

Dream project:
“I’d love to create a large-scale experiential show with a narrative like Punchdrunk’s Sleep No More.”

What’s on his playlist:
“Gabriel Garzón-Montano’s last record is a constant.”

His (not) coffee order:
“Coffee makes me crazy—it’s lavender tea all day for me.”

His creative process:
“I’m very instinctual; I don’t like to plan too much. Most times I have a broad outline of what I want to do, but it’s all about what comes out in the moment when I’m with my dancers.”

On cofounding
No)one. Art House:
“Three friends that I grew up dancing with had all returned to L.A. around the same time I did. We all felt L.A. was lacking a true contemporary dance community—especially a community that consisted of folks who look like us. We began No)one. Art House on the ideology ‘Not the efforts of one,’ to try and make what we produced truly about the work and not the CV of the person doing it.”

When he’s not dancing:
“I just got a bike, so I’ve been trying to ride that as much as possible. Meditation is also key.”

The one item he can’t live without:
“My weighted blanket—it’s infused with lavender and knocks me out instantly!”