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| Irina has dedicated her life to studying human behavior as an experience designer within a multitude of institutions. These include choreographing onstage performances in large theaters, exploring cross-organizational tech partnerships and working with people in wheelchairs who dream of feeling warm sand between their toes again.
She holds an MFA in Choreography from NYU — Tisch School of the Arts. In 2004, she launched the oXymoros Dance Theatre and co-founded the ANNEX Group, while in 2007 she founded Choreo Theatro Company. The Brooklyn-based non-profit company was financially supported by Greenpoint real estate developers and served as an artists’ hub, dedicated to promoting creative work to diverse communities by mixing narrative with interactive media. At its peak, Choreo Theatro assembled a network of 60 collaborators, performers, designers, composers and specialists. Irina’s own choreography work explored the vital co-existence of dance, sound, drama and design by pushing the boundaries of form beyond accepted norms. Her years leading the company culminated in 2010 with the production of Homer’s Odyssey, a 12-hour, cross-disciplinary performance work presented at New York’s 92nd Street Y.
To support her choreography Irina worked in real estate development. In 2007 she founded Gestion Management LLC, through which she designed fully furnished apartments for short-term rentals. Drawing on her studies of what moves people, she staged welcoming environments that tenants could call home for a few months. She also used her extensive experience organizing and running a performance’s cast, crew and budgets to become proficient at managing contractors, as well as marketing and later selling these living spaces at a significant profit.
By 2011, as her real-estate projects had all been rented or sold and investment funds to develop new properties dwindled, Irina moved into advertising – or the art of tapping into emotions. She entered the industry from the sales door and grew into leading strategic conversations. In her current role at a digital intelligence company, she takes a deep dive into big data and predictive modeling. Her work helps create new types of revenue through reimagining data applications in industries outside of the company’s core media-buying business model. On her day to day, she works with brand, agency and publishing executives, as well as with innovation and product teams, to unearth opportunities and then package, prototype and pitch ideas – and even productize them, when the right market opportunity arises.
Irina’s latest project drew upon choreography principles to help the digital intelligence company build a brand management platform. This allows clients to define their overall brand positioning, the way through which they communicate with micro audiences and choose their creative messaging down to an individual consumer level. Through this collaborative work, the company won Advertising Research Foundation Ogilvy awards in the Innovation and the Big Data categories.
Over the past several years, Irina has also worked with USC’s School of Cinematic Arts to develop Mixed Reality games for individuals with spinal cord injuries. The games’ life-changing impact has been one of her most inspiring experiences. The team designed Skyfarer to transform tedious, yet essential, physical therapy routines into an adventure that transports patients to Pre-Incan mythology landscapes. The game redirected the players’ focus from strenuous, repetitive work to an engaging, interactive experience, one that benefited their overall health and life expectancy and allowed family and friends to participate.
Public presentations and publications of Irina’s work include: Collaborative Research Demo for body movement-based social games for the assessment and rehabilitation of upper limb sensorimotor function of wheelchair confined individuals – IEEE Virtual Reality 2012, L’Elisir D’Amore Opera – Tuxedo Park Club & Arclight Theatre 2011, The Odyssey Production – 92Y Kaufmann Concert Hall 2010, Aristophanes’ Lysistrata – Greek Cultural Center 2008, Digma I – Cool New York Festival 2008, Digma II – Cool New York Festival 2008, Euripides’ Hecuba – New York University – Tisch School of The Arts – Drama Department 2007, Aristophanes’ The Frogs – Greek Cultural Center 2007, Digma – Cool New York Festival 2007, Statius’ Thebaid – Target Margin at the Kitchen Theatre 2006, Gombrowicz’s Operetta – New School of Education – LaMaMa Theatre 2005, Fires – Vortex Theatre 2005, 1/8” = 1’ – 0” – Oasis Chashama Festival 2005, Suspendida – Oasis Chashama Festival 2005, Fourth World – Outside/ Input – Richard Foreman’s Ontological – Hysteric Theatre Lab Program 2005,cHronos – Bessie Schoenberg Series – New York University – Tisch School of The Arts 2005, Who Cares About the Pants – Cool New York Festival 2005, No Strains Attached – Whitewave d.u.m.b.o. Festival 2004.