This year's Winter Intensive will explore the use of movement as an approach to thought. 

Based on methodologies developed by William Forsythe and The Forsythe Company, Riley will look into the assumptions we make through felt sensation and perception, how physical action can uncover both novel and habitual thought patterns, and how to find focus through the entire body. 

Classes will include warmup, learned choreography, improvisation, and discussion.  

Register for the entire Intensive, which includes morning Master Classes at Houston Station (9:30-11am) + afternoon research at Centennial Performing Arts Studios (12-3pm).

Or register for a single morning Master Class or all 5 morning Master Classes. Drop-ins welcome.

Full registration is required to participate in the afternoon movement research sessions.


Or you can mail a check for $300 (memo Winter Intensive) to New Dialect (4611 Elkins Avenue, Nashville, TN 37209)

Riley is a dancer, teacher, and researcher based in Portland, Maine, USA.  He has danced extensively with choreographer William Forsythe since 2010, initially as part of The Forsythe Company, and now as an independent artist.  In 2015, Riley performed Forsythe’s DUO2015 on the farewell world tour of iconic dancer Sylvie Guillem, and has continued to perform this piece internationally for galas, festivals, and museums. 

Previous to joining The Forsythe Company, Riley danced with the Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, Stadttheater Bern, and the Netherlands Dance Theater 2.

In addition to performing around the world, Riley has been frequently invited to teach master classes at universities, dance companies, and choreographic research centers around Europe, USA, UK, Asia, and Australia.  While living in Germany, he was an Associate Researcher with Motion Bank and the Dance Engaging Science workgroup, through which he developed interdisciplinary research between neuroscience and dance. 

He studied dance at the Walnut Hill School for the Arts and the Juilliard School in NYC, where he received his BFA in 2007.  He is a Princess Grace Award winner and was named Contemporary Dancer of the Year for the Leonide-Massine Positano Prize, Italy, 2015.

William Forsythe's Alignigung

performed by Riley Watts & Rauf Yasit


Each winter, spring, and summer, New Dialect hosts dancers from around the country for week-long intensives that offer dancers ages 17-35 the opportunity to study a variety of relevant contemporary dance concepts, vocabularies, and techniques with our knowledgable and internationally experienced faculty.

The goal of our Intensives is to create a supportive environment in which developing and professional dancers are given tools to research their own movement languages and emerge with a greater capacity to intuitively interpret a broad range of choreographic voices. Dancers also have the opportunity to experience New Dialect's approach to the creative process through collaborative sessions with our founder and artistic director, Banning Bouldin.  


Thank you for such an incredible intensive. I had a wonderful time working with you and your lovely company members. The environment you cultivated was enriching, deliberate, and encouraged this specific sort of riskiness that I loved. It was fascinating to witness your creative process and I hope to be able to be a part of it again soon.
— Charlotte Carmichael, Summer Intensive 2016
As I have landed back in the West, with this past week’s offerings still jittering within me, I want to again thank you for the opportunity to come to Nashville. I am still in awe of the supportive, nurturing, and daring group I shared so much with this past week.

The intensive fulfilled me physically, mentally, emotionally, and intellectually. I am still trying to find the words to express my experience, but I feel you have summed it up already: I have been given, quite literally, a new dialect to work with.... The week’s experiences have revived my relationship to dance, the dance community, and myself. Also having grown up in the South, it was nice to be surrounded in some southern comfort!

I will say with confidence that I will be back and look forward to another Winter Intensive!

Thank you again. I so appreciate our time together.
— Haley Bowman, Winter Intensive 2015