PUSH FOLDArtistic Director | Samuel Hobbs | Portland, Oregon USA
Behind the scenes photograph of the Union PDX - Festival:20 live-streamed artist panel discussion at Polaris Dance Theatre in Portland, Oregon | Photography: Jingzi Zhao



Union PDX | Learn More

Festival of Contemporary Dance

Established in 2019, the Union PDX - Festival of Contemporary Dance was born with the mission of creating a platform for artists to achieve greater work, to increase visibility and access for artists and audiences, and to expand the creative influences and voices here in Portland. Providing a much-needed platform for supportive cross-pollination in the Pacific Northwest dance community, the Union PDX festival breaks down barriers for boundary-pushing dance artists, offering important artistic and administrative resources and opportunities to address major needs for professional artists.

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“push/FOLD's festival drew national and international contemporary-dance ideas from Brooklyn to New Jersey to Portland to L.A. to the Dominican Republic and Taiwan… If there’s one thing Festival:21 wasn’t short on, it’s talent… In all, the festival performance was a success... As push/FOLD and the festival collaborators continue to make a name for themselves, Union PDX is beginning to fit into the annual autumnal patchwork of the city.”

Elizabeth Whelan - Oregon ArtsWatch

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Visceral Movement Theory™

Power, Movement, Flow

Visceral Movement Theory™, created by Samuel Hobbs, forms the basis of push/FOLD's movement education and choreography and reframes the biomechanics of movement in all forms of dance and athletics. Based on current fascial research with our blood vessels, nerves, and organs as the primary motivators of action and power, and Samuel's training in Osteopathy and background in dance and competitive athletics, push/FOLD's classes guide students through structural anatomy in an accessible format tailored for age, ability, focus, and movement form. Through meditations, partnering tasks, and phrase-work, students learn to increase efficiency and power in all forms of movement disciplines and experience the momentum-based power of Visceral Movement Theory.

Available Formats:
  • 1 to 5 Hour Movement Classes, Lectures, and Demonstrations
  • 2+ Day Series

We tailor classes specifically for desired skill-set focus, age, and experience. Classes engage and challenge all students, regardless of experience.

Community and athletics-based programs and lectures open up the world of health and informed training.

Who We've Worked With:
  • Nia — Instructor Training Program
  • Oregon Ballet Theatre
  • The Portland Ballet
  • Western Oregon University
  • Vancouver Public Schools
  • La Infinita Compañia
  • Oregon Dance Educators of Oregon
  • Columbia Dance Center
  • Polaris Dance Theatre
  • The National University of Taiwan
  • and many others...

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Education & Mentorship

School Shows, Masterclasses, Workshops, Presentations, Mentorships

push/FOLD’s educational programming draws from Samuel’s background in education, sports, visceral biomechanics and anatomy, working with at-risk youth, and mentoring students and professional artists. Our educational programs include:

Performances & Professional Development
  • Student preview performances during our self-produced shows and the Union PDX festival.
  • Professional development classes in Grant Writing and Leadership Development.
  • Professional mentorship with arts professionals.
Visceral Movement Theory™
  • Workshops and Masterclasses that expand on dance techniques and pedagogical foundations that reframe our understanding of movement in dance and athletics.
  • Community and professional classes, talks, and lectures regarding movement and health.

Our student and professional-level classes build on existing dance techniques in all forms of dance. We introduce the importance of our organs to the application of power in movement and partnering, instilling an understanding of the principles of safety and physical utility for career longevity and injury prevention.

Speak with us today about we can help serve your community.

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Film Production

Dance-for-Film, Performances, Education, and Live‑Stream Productions

push/FOLD produces high-quality live-streamed events and film works for schools, artists, and arts and education-focused organizations and projects. Using the latest film and live-stream equipment and editing and coloring-grading software, collaborations can include:

  • In-person and Live-streamed Fundraisers and Performances
  • Educational Films and School Modules
  • Dance-for-Films & Music Videos
  • Marketing & Instruction Videos

Speak with us today for information on our equipment and how we can work together. Rates are based on project scope, budget-size, and your mission and vision.

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Jingzi Zhao | 2020 Union PDX Festival Artist Panel Discussion
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