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People  •  Theatre  •  Assistant Professor

Ilya Vidrin




  • Ph.D. Coventry University
  • Ed.M. Harvard University
  • B.S. Northeastern University


  • Dance Magazine’s “25 to Watch”
  • Derek Bok Fellowship (Harvard University)
  • Massachusetts Cultural Council Choreographic Fellowship
  • Live Arts Boston Grantee (Boston Foundation)
  • Byron Fellowship
  • Presidential Grant (Knight Foundation)

Research Focus

  • Performance Studies
  • Dance and Choreographic Practices
  • Care Ethics & Social Epistemology
  • Assistive Robotics
  • Ethics & Artificial Intelligence

Professional Affiliations

  • Signet Society for the Arts at Harvard
  • Rhetoric Society of America
  • Association for Moral Education
  • International Association for Dance and Medicine and Science
  • American Psychological Association
  • MetaLab @ Harvard University

Courses Taught

THTR 1170: Eloquent Presenter
THTR 1150: Dance History and Performance
THTR 1125: Improvisation
INAM 2000: Ethics in Creativity
INAM 6200: Topics in Communication Strategies

Dr. Ilya Vidrin is Assistant Professor of Creative Practice Research and core faculty at the Institute for Experiential Robotics. Born into a refugee family, Ilya’s work engages with and investigates ethics of interaction, including the embodiment of care, trust, cultural competence, and social responsibility. As an interdisciplinary research-practitioner, Ilya’s research draws on concepts and methods in social epistemology, performance philosophy, ethics of care, and cognitive psychology. Ilya has been featured as one of Dance Magazine’s “25 to Watch” (2022) with close collaborator Jessi Stegall, and has been an artist-in-residence at the BallettxSchwerin (Germany), MIT Media Lab, Harvard ArtLab, L.A. Contemporary Dance Company, North Atlantic Ballet, Ballet Des Moines, Jacob’s Pillow, the National Parks Service, The Walnut Hill School, Interlochen Arts Academy, Boston Center for the Arts, Le Laboratoire, Museum of Fine Arts (Boston), and New Museum (NYC).

Ilya is an alum of Northeastern, where he pursued undergraduate studies in Cognitive Psychology and Neuroscience. He ​holds a Master’s Degree in Human Development and Psychology ​from​ Harvard University, and a doctorate in Performing Arts ​from​ Coventry University (United Kingdom). His field research involved working with The Royal Swedish Ballet, Berlin Staatsballett, The Cambrians, Erick Hawkins Dance Company, ​and dance artists including ​Sidra Bell, Aszure Barton, Ohad Naharin, Brian Brooks, Jill Johnson, Wendy Whelan, and William Forsythe.

Research/Publications Highlights

Vidrin, I. (forthcoming). “Responsible Knowing in Partnering”. Performance Philosophy.

Dramaturg for Jessi Stegall’s “The Theremin Vignettes” (2024) at the Institute of Contemporary Art (Boston).

Vidrin, I. (2022). “More or Less”. Residency; New Museum, New York City.

Vidrin, I. (2022). “Considered Care”. Short film collaboration with Boston Ballet artist My’kal Stromile and cinematographer Sue Murad.

Vidrin, I. (2021). “Choreographing the Personal: A Profile of Jessica Roseman”. Boston Art Review.

Vidrin, I. (2021). “OtherWise: A Choreographic Investigation of Intergenerational Trauma Through the Lens of the Soviet Bard Movement”. Dancemakers Lab Residency, Boston Center for the Arts.

Vidrin, I., and Laviers, I. (2021). What Falling Robots Reveal About the Absurdity of Human Trust.  Psyche Magazine.

Vidrin, I. (2021). We Need to Distinguish Trust and Care in Partnering.  Dance Magazine.

Vidrin, I. (2020). “Attunement: Or That Which Cannot Be Measured“. Residency; New Museum, New York City.

Laviers, A., and Vidrin, I. (2020). Can a Robot Do a Trust Fall?: Absurdity as a Component of Human Intelligence and Embodiment. Creative Computing.

Vidrin, I. (2020). Embodied Ethics: The Conditions and Norms of Communication in Partnering. In Thinking Touch, Edited by Malaika Sarco-Thomas. Cambridge Scholars Press.

Pettee, M., Shimmin, C., Duhaime, D., & Vidrin, I. (2019). Beyond Imitation: Generative and Variational Choreography via Machine Learning.  Computational Creativity.

Vidrin, I. (2018). Partnering as Rhetoric. In A world of Muscle, Bone & Organs: Research and Scholarship in Dance. Edited by Hetty Blades, Charlotte Waelde and Simon Ellis. Coventry University, pp 112-131.

In the News


Ilya Vidrin awarded Knight Foundation grant

CAMD professor Ilya Vidrin combines his background as a dancer and choreographer with his experience in neuroscience and robotics to help design biofeedback technology and explore meaning through physical movement.

January 8, 2024