Gabriella Wiltz is a dance artist, writer and filmmaker. Born and raised on the South Side of Chicago, she began dancing at the age of four and continued to dance through high school. As a dance major at The Ohio State University, Gabriella worked closely with choreographers such as Teena Marie Custer, Stephan Koplowitz, Daniel Roberts, and Susan Rethorst. In 2015, she debuted her first collegiate work entitled “Affinity III” in the OSU Department of Dance Spring Concert; Absolute Existence. In 2016, she was chosen amongst 10 other graduate and undergraduate students in the Department of Dance to be in the inaugural Brazil Tour Group—a touring repertory company led by department chair and choreographer, Susan Hadley, that traveled to Salvador, Brazil.
Her journey with dance film began in the spring of 2013 when she created her first dance film, “Scatterbrained.” She produced numerous dance films during her time at Ohio State while also gaining dance documentation experience with the Department of Dance and BalletMet. In addition to performing in the Brazil Tour Group, Gabriella was the resident videographer for the experience and created both promotional videos and a mini-documentary with the goal of shining light on what it means to be the member of a touring company.
Gabriella premiered “Revitalize, Rehumanize” in the student-produced show, Meet Us Here, in March 2017. This thesis work was an intermedia piece that revolved around investigating, exploring, experiencing, exemplifying and celebrating Black joy through solo performance, film, multimedia design elements and audience participation. Her research findings were presented at the Denman Research Forum that year prior to graduating with her Bachelor of Fine Arts in dance, magna cum laude, with distinction in dance and a focus in dance film and technology that spring.
After graduating, Gabriella moved back to her hometown to start her professional dance career. She created a dance film entitled “TAKE UP SPACE” in October of 2017 as a part of JKL Collective’s Quorum Project. Following that project, she joined Mezcla Media Collective: a collective for Chicago’s women of color in the film industry. In January, Gabriella premiered her latest dance film “WHITE NOISE.” with co-creator and fellow dance filmmaker, Talia Koylass. The project was entirely choreographed, shot, directed and edited by the duo and tackled the question, “What does it mean to be who we are?”
Gabriella has written for numerous websites, CollegeFashionista.com being the most notable, where she was both a contributor and an editor. As an inaugural member of the writing residency at youneedtribe.com, a space dedicated to reigniting a sense of tribal community for women of color, she investigated how sharing her life experiences through writing acts as a mode of self-discovery.
She is passionate about aesthetics, authenticity, and storytelling through all of her creative mediums. The desire to amplify the voices of others and connect human experiences through fusing dance and film in different ways is what propels her to continue creating her own lane in her career.