Powering Up


I wrote a story for the current print issue of L Style G Style about Forklift Dancworks’ Leaps and Bounds program, an exciting dance and education partnership that helps kids exercise their minds and their bodies.

Leaps and Bounds’ creator and Forklift Artistic Director Allison Orr is taking on another  project this fall that promises to be lots of fun: PowerUP. PowerUP, which will take place September 21 and 22, is an outdoor production that will feature both the people and the machines that make up Austin’s municipal power company. Think of it as a ballet of public power workers.

Here’s a description from the organization’s Kickstarter page: “This dance will be a massive outdoor production—a set of 20 utility poles, bucket trucks weaving in and out, cranes extending 100+ feet into the air and 50+ linemen climbing and performing aesthetically sculpted choreography that intertwines their physical work—high wire repairs, fixing electrical grids, and responding to power emergencies—with personal narratives of the long process it takes to become an expert at the job.”

If that sounds too exciting to miss, you’re not the only one who thinks so – the Kickstarter campaign, which aimed to raise $15,000, raised more than $22,000 at the end of April.

The performance will be accompanied by original music by Austin composer Graham Reynolds, conducted by Austin Symphony Conductor Peter Bay.

Says Orr on the Kickstarter page: “The ultimate goal in creating this dance is for the performance to give the audience a deeper appreciation, respect, and understanding for the work of our public power employees—work which supports all of our lives going well on a daily basis. The dance will also show the beauty and artistry inherent in this job, creating a deeper connection to the human being behind the work.”



A native New Englander, Kate moved to Austin in 2002 to attend graduate school at the University of Texas at Austin, where she got her master’s degree in journalism. She spent several years as a reporter with the Austin Business Journal, where she covered health care, development and real estate. Kate now runs Thumbtack Communications, where she provides ghostwriting, copywriting, social media strategy and PR in addition to writing bylined articles. She lives in Central Austin with her husband, son, and two cranky cats. When she’s not writing, she’s playing guitar, gardening or hiking.