Independent Lens: Born to Fly - Elizabeth Streb vs. Gravity

About This Episode


As a choreographer of dance and performance art, Elizabeth Streb has consistently pushed the boundaries of her craft. Her work openly questions why dance can’t be explosive, action oriented, and extreme, yet just as captivating as ballet. Over the years she has worked to create a unique performance company that melds the physical with the sublime, and her troupe’s fearless performances in both public and private spaces challenge the notion of what the body can do.

Born to Fly: Elizabeth Streb vs. Gravity is the story of the groundbreaking choreographer sometimes called “the Evel Knievel of dance.” In over 30 years of practice, she has pioneered a movement form called “POPACTION,” which is couched in the exploration of human potential – both physical and emotional.

As seen in the film, Streb’s dancers become part acrobat, part gymnast, and part extreme thrill seeker as they walk on walls, dive through glass, and move so fast they seem to disappear and fly. Born to Fly culminates with Streb and her dancers preparing and presenting gravity-defying performances in London’s Cultural Olympiad leading up to the 2012 Olympics.