Refusing to be Disposed — RADFest 2019
“Closing the night, Ashley McQueen anchors her solo “Refusing to be Disposed” with video of “Sufferin’ Til Suffrage” from School House Rock, and images of red and blue splotches echoed by paint-soaked American flags placed on the perimeter of a tarp on the stage. McQueen appears, wrapped in more American flags sewn end to end. In a captivatingly obscene tug of war with an audience member, she asks a guy in the first row to hold one end as she unravels her flag toga, revealing her naked body. The tarp becomes McQueen’s canvas as she then smears the saturated flags around and dives like a Slip-n-Slide, splashing paint on her body and face. Turns out, democracy is messy.” - Lauren Warnecke
Refusing to be Disposed — Evening of Contemporary Dance
FOR WHICH IT STANDS, Review: The Dance Enthusiast (2018)
"McQueen's powerful solos — which combine mime, slip-and-slide pratfalls, Pennywise leers, and a mini toilet-plunger to perverse effect — are as riotously funny as they are sadly acute."
"Sarah Starkweather’s equally hilarious robotic and maniacally eager Hillary Clinton serves up blonde-bombshell "realness" complete with a line of ever-ascendant high kicks."
"McQueen’s humor is best in a duet with her puppet master, Jesse Obremski, sporting a Vladimir Putin mask. Set to Tschaikovsky's The Nutcracker pas de deux, the pointed absurdity of a preening president rubbing up against his shirtless overlord disturbs and amuses, particularly McQueen's show of craving approval in the face of Obremski's plastic mask."
"Watching the company sway from one embrace to another reminds us of a better time and proves that the most efficient way to demolish a monster is to refuse him space in your mind."
- Juan Michael Porter II
FOR WHICH IT STANDS, Time Out Magazine NY (2018)
"Ashley McQueen and her scrappy young company take on the madness of the Trump era in an anthology of nine satirical dances on political themes, including the solo Plunge the Swamp."
FOR WHICH IT STANDS, Brokelyn's 20 best cheap things to do this weekend (2018)
"Pledge allegiance to the gags at For Which It Stands, with nine episodic dances combining humor and reality to satirize the Trump Administration. (Fri-Sat, Center for Performance Research, $20)"
DRENCHED review, Arova Contemporary Ballet (2017) “ Ashley McQueen ’s DRENCHED took four dancers on an emotional, symbolic journey through the facets of change — apprehension, struggle and, in this case, eventual triumph. The score by Olafur Arnalds, Nils Frahm and Stephen Moccio provided an atmosphere to the choreography along with the sounds of water (yes, real water) falling like rain into a shallow pool onstage from a device above it. The water, which the performers immersed themselves in and embodied with their movements, gave a visceral charge to the work.”
The Santa Barbara Independent, ENDGAME (2017)
“... Endgame, a contemporary dance showcase offering a broad range of reactions to art and politics: from choreographer Ashley McQueen’s “Plunge the Swamp,” a memorable commentary on Trump’s tendency toward diarrhea of the mouth” - Maggie Yates
CITY STORIES, Village Voice "Voice Choices" (2017)
Spring to Dance Festival Review, St. Louis (2015)
"McQueen’s kaleidoscopic “Psychosocial” was a showcase for the Big Muddy Dance Company at its most exuberant."
Spring to Dance Festival Interview, St. Louis (2015)
Laune, Laumeier Sculpture Park (2014) -- Top 10 Things to Do in STL This October, St. Louis Magazine
“Ashley McQueen will gather her dance troupe on Way Field for “Laune” A Dance Performance . The choreography makes use of hedge trimmers, hoses, and riding lawn mowers, celebrating the hard work of keeping Laumeier’s 105 acres lush and verdant."
Variations on Exchange (2014)
By Jessica Ruhlin
""...choreography demonstrated a nice understanding of classical stage formations and showcased both ballet and contemporary vocabulary done with enough repetition and variation that the piece had a sense of construction and character without being narrative. "
"a showcase of her incredible physical capabilities- and extraordinary shoulder-joint rotation- and even more so, a demonstration of the intelligence behind motif and progression of a piece. "
"contrast within this piece was well done; I enjoyed the exotic flair of the music while the women seemed to represent something closer to home. This was a complete piece, with choreography that was at once innovative to the eye and relatable within the heart."
Alabama Dance Theatre's Stars on the Riverfront
August 3-4, 2014
The Montgomery Advertiser, by Randy Foster
" 'Swing!' is a wonderful short work created by ADT alumna Ashley McQueen, who is with Common Thread Contemporary Dance Group in St. Louis. The dancers--Baylee Clark, Catherine Cobb, Cameron Crawford, Allyson Trimble, Olivia Vittitow—responded to the popular-dance-influenced, highly theatrical style of the piece with verve and elan."
"McQueen also created an absolutely terrific piece of choreography for Jessica Russell. 'Inversion' to music by Wim Mertens, a Belgian minimalist composer, is a stunning display of technical prowess, as well as expressive performance qualities. Russell maneuvers the unexpected twists and turns, stops and starts, and staccato accents set off against legato stretches required by McQueen with remarkable aplomb. The rehearsal tutu and bandeau of her costume are most effective. One recurring movement phrase has Russell in a wide plie that becomes a releve to show the beauty of her arched feet on pointe. Choreography and dancer are perfectly met in this dance."