History

Canopy Studio began as a small group of women and men, under the leadership of Founder Susan Murphy, who believed in the idea of a dedicated aerial arts center, where community members of all ages and abilities could learn the art of aerial dance and performance. Don Carson, Susan’s husband, was the builder and Jennifer and Bob Segrest and Chris Evans were the architects of this ambitious and visionary project. In 2002, nine months after breaking ground, Canopy’s doors opened. Classes were small and enthusiastic.

Susan and Don have moved to Meridian, GA, where they live on a coastal tidal creek. They have plans to build a studio on their property in the near future. Susan continues to work with aerialists, helping them focus and refine their dances through exploration of the Effort and Shape material of Laban Movement Analysis. Her e-mail is: majette@darientel.net and her website is www.authenticaerial.com.

Don Carson, who built Canopy Studio, has made all of our state of the art carbon fiber trapezes. For more information, go to his website at www.dancetrapeze.com.

Founder

Susan Murphy

Murphy began studying low-to-the-floor dance trapeze with Terry Sendgraff in Berkeley, CA in 1978. Susan holds a Master’s degree in modern dance from Mills College in Oakland, CA and is a Certified Movement Analyst through the Laban Institute for Movement Studies in New York City. Moving to NYC in 1983, she continued developing trapeze as fitness, self-expression, and performance art, performing at Lincoln Center in 1988. After moving to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1990, Susan continued teaching kids and adults and performed at the Cowell Theater in San Francisco in 1994. She taught modern dance at the University of Georgia from 1999-2002. In 2002, Susan and her husband Don Carson, envisioned and built Canopy Studio, a community aerial arts center in Athens, GA. Susan served as Executive Director of Canopy until she moved to the coast of GA in 2009, where she and Don plan to build a small studio-by-the-marsh by the end of 2010. She is currently teaching workshops around the country, using Laban Movement Analysis as a tool for refining and deepening aerial choreography.