RTV: Cassie Tunick

Release Date: Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Second Nature (Cassie Tunick, Heather Harpham, and Danny Tunick) presents a fully improvised performance called “Next to Nothing.”

This musical/physical/vocal exposure of the present moment reveals what we’ve known all along – nothing happens for a reason. Next to nothing, there’s always something clamoring to exist. In this fully improvised performance, distinctly evolved narratives dovetail with intricate dances. Songs avalanche out of sound, morph into gestural architectures with a keen ear for broken rhythms and altered states of mind. The will-o’-the-wisp moment is made flesh in Second Nature’s ongoing exploration of the physical supernatural and the real-as-your-hometown macabre. In the interview, Cassie Tunick discusses her long running collaboration with Heather Harpham, the intense and powerful process of total theatrical improvisation, and how movement and language coexist in her work.


Cassie Tunick is a performer, writer, and teacher. Her physical improvisations have been seen on stages across the US and in Germany, France, the Netherlands, and Estonia. Theatrical collaborators include the Butoh troupe inkBoat, experimental music-theater group Reflex Ensemble, video artist David Finkelstein, the poet Katie Yates, and Abby Bender. Currently, she performs with Second Nature. She has danced for Tracey Rhoades’ Exploding Roses, played keyboards with The Mad Scene, acted the title role in Eric Kozial’s film The Duchess, and vocalized with the band Barbez. In New York, her work has been presented at Triskelion Arts, Danspace at St. Mark’s Church, Ontological Theater, Brooklyn Museum, Irondale Center, Dixon Place, Movement Research, and Roulette. She is a Senior Teacher of Ruth Zaporah’s Action Theater, devoted to the study and development of Action Theater for the last 25 years. She holds an MFA in Writing and Poetics from Naropa Institute and recently finished editing a book on improvisation by Ruth Zaporah due out in September.