“Coupled,” a fictional contemporary dance film, depicts universal, magical love regardless of sexual preference or gender identity. This intentionally inclusive work features four couples sequentially: lesbian (modern dance), heterosexual (ballet en pointe), gay male partners (ballroom dance), and one with a transgender partner (vogue dance). Through their equivalent friendship, romance, and devotion, this film also supports ideal love relationships being truly equal partnerships. On location in long Steadicam takes, the camera is choreographed with the dance to a score including human heartbeats.

Showing LGBT relationships through the lens of a medium as universal as dance, “Coupled” urges viewers to see that love is love! ChoreoNova recognizes the general scarcity of LGBT-inclusive (showing at least one LGBT character) programming in art. “Coupled” helps to fill this gap. Showing the LGBT population, “Coupled” makes available dance art more relatable and more emotionally accessible to this underserved community.

The film also fights stereotypical assumptions about gender roles. ChoreoNova sees no reason why the general fact of superior male physical strength cannot be overcome by inventive choreography to send a more inclusive, gender-nonspecific message that is truly reflective of modern society. In the heterosexual segment, “Growing Apart,” the weaker female shares partnering duties equally with the stronger male, combining classical ballet and contemporary dance into something new. “Coupled” aims to eliminate the sexist bias inherent in traditional partnered dance.

To date, we have shot the first half and completed pre-production for the couple with the transgender mate. The creation of this film is ongoing.

Inclusive programming attracts many non-LGBT viewers as well. In fall 2016, “Coupled” will begin to reach across our society via local community access television broadcasts and film festivals screenings to both LGBT and non-LGBT alike.

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