Sunhwa Chung, Choreographer and Director

Photo: Jake Chessum

What are you doing today?
I’m going to Kmart to buy some milk for my baby. I live on 9th Street between A and First Avenue, so it’s very convenient.

What do you do?
I have a dance company, Ko-Ryo Dance Theater. The style is contemporary, but it’s influenced by traditional Korean culture. I’m the choreographer, the director, and also I’m a full-time mom.

Tell me about your outfit.
I got the dress last year at a Korean H&M kind of store. I felt a little bit chilly in the morning when I put it on, so I put on a vintage petticoat underneath. Then, when I took my baby to school, all of the other parents were looking at me very strangely. I guess I look a little unusual.

Do you often dress unusually?
I like to stand out. My husband says that my eye for color is very vivid. I’ve noticed that most women wear jeans and black tops—the other day I went to a birthday party and every woman there was in that combination except for me.

Does being a dancer affect your fashion choices?
Yes, definitely. We’re struggling all the time, but in a good way. There is a passion in transforming your body, and when you wear clothes, you need the freedom to express the passion.

How do you create a new dance?
Everything is inspired by my daily life. Maybe later I will make a dance about how I met you guys on the street today. That could be quite inspiring. The photographer was asking me to do very elegant movements, and I was really depressed before the picture, but afterward I thought, This was dance therapy!

Sunhwa Chung, Choreographer and Director