Prumsodun Ok is guided by love. He works to positively transform our world through his practice as an artist, teacher, writer, and maker of things. His interdisciplinary performances contemplate René Daumal’s expression of “the avant-garde in antiquity,” mining the tradition of Khmer classical dance to explore the intersection of contemporary social issues with new possibilities for performance. His original works have been performed at REDCAT, Highways, CounterPULSE, KUNST-STOFF arts/fest, Pieter, CSULB University Art Museum, Teatro Benito Juarez in Mexico City, and at a joint conference hosted by the Society of Dance History Scholars and the Congress on Research in Dance.
Beyond his creative practice, Prum has directed and produced the SFAI Asian Performance Series in San Francisco and curated programs for INTERCITY (Phnom Penh), Anatomy Riot (Los Angeles), and Children of Refugees (Long Beach). He has been a featured speaker at the Association of Performing Arts Presenters Conference (APAP), UCLA, TED, as well as NYU as part of Season of Cambodia. Prum’s writings have been published by Salon.com, In Dance Magazine, and featured by the California Dance Network. In March 2013, he published his first book: Moni Mekhala and Ream Eyso. Featuring contributions from visual artist Brian Mendez, cultural anthropologist Toni Shapiro-Phim, and choreographer Sophiline Cheam Shapiro, the book retells the sacred drama of the same name to explore cycles of love and violence, the contemporary struggles of today’s women, and the passage of knowledge and leadership within a tradition nearly destroyed by genocide.
Prum is the recipient of honors, grants, and fellowships from TED, APAP, CHIME, Durfee Foundation, Center for Cultural Innovation, and the Alliance for California Traditional Arts (ACTA), and Network of Ensemble Theaters among others. He is currently Associate Artistic Director of Khmer Arts, a transnational organization at the forefront of Khmer dance practice. Since his tenure, Prum has invigorated the organization by directing and producing the Khmer Arts 10-Year Anniversary Celebration at the Long Beach Museum of Art, installing a large-scale painting by visual artist Sayon Syprasoeuth into its Cambodia Town studio, directing the organization’s statewide Salon Series, and initiating a residency program for Southern California artists of all performance disciplines. Prum is also the youngest member of ACTA’s Board of Directors.
Last, and certainly not least, Prum is forever thankful to the many teachers and mentors whom have graced his life: dancers Sophiline Cheam Shapiro, Penh Yom, and Oguri; vanguard composer Charles Boone; filmmakers Ernie Gehr, Brook Hinton, Jeanne Liotta, and George Kuchar; opera director Peter Sellars; and scholars David Gere and Anurima Banerji.
English, Khmer (Cambodian)
Artistic Director of Prumsodun Ok and NATYARASA, Associate Artistic Director of Khmer Arts