Events – Danspace Project
Movement Research Fall Festival 2018, photo by Andrew Kim, courtesy of Movement Research.

Movement Research Festival Fall 2019: ComeUnion

Thursday, December 5 at 8pm
Friday, December 6 at 8pm
Saturday, December 7 at 8pm

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LISTEN TO THE PROGRAM AUDIO FILE

Movement Research, one of the world’s leading laboratories for the investigation of dance and movement-based forms, returns to Danspace Project with its annual Fall Festival.

ComeUnion is co-curated by Marielys Burgos MeléndezJaime Ortega, and iele paloumpis. Events will take place over three evenings at Danspace Project as well as throughout the week.

December 5: Camilo Godoy, Jerron Herman, and Stevie May
December 6: KK de La Vida, Dustin Maxwell, and Grace Osborne
December 7: Christopher Unpezverde Núñez and Merian Soto

Audio Description will be provided at this event. Please email Anna Adams Stark at mrfestival@movementresearch.org with any questions.

Accessibility: Danspace Project’s main entrance is fully wheelchair accessible via ramp. A same-level restroom is available near Danspace Project’s main performance space in the church sanctuary.

Movement Research is one of the world’s leading laboratories for the investigation of dance and movement-based forms. Valuing the individual artist, their creative process and their vital role within society, Movement Research is dedicated to the creation and implementation of free and low-cost programs that nurture and instigate discourse and experimentation. Movement Research strives to reflect the cultural, political and economic diversity of its moving community, including artists and audiences alike.

Michael Parmelee. Photo: Ambika Raina.
Doug LeCours. Photo: Jessie Young.

DraftWork: Doug LeCours & Michael Parmelee

Saturday, December 7 at 3pm
DraftWork is free and open to all! No advance reservations.

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Curated by Ishmael Houston-Jones, the DraftWork series hosts informal Saturday afternoon performances that offer choreographers an opportunity to show their work in various stages of development.

Performances are followed by discussion and a reception with the artists and curator.

 

DraftWork is presented, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council.

 

Accessibility: Danspace Project’s main entrance is fully wheelchair accessible via ramp. A same-level restroom is available near Danspace Project’s main performance space in the church sanctuary.

Ishmael Houston-Jones (curator): choreographer, author, performer, teacher, and curator. His improvised dance and text work has been performed in New York, across the US, and in Europe, Canada, Australia, and Latin America. He and Fred Holland shared a New York Dance and Performance “Bessie” Award for Cowboys, Dreams and Ladders. He was awarded his second “Bessie” Award for the revival of THEM, his 1985/86 collaboration with writer Dennis Cooper and composer Chris Cochrane. He curated Platform 2012: Parallels and Platform 2016: Lost & Found, both at Danspace Project. He has received a 2016 Herb Alpert, a 2015 Doris Duke Impact and a 2013 Foundation for Contemporary Arts Artists Awards. In 2017 he received a third “Bessie” for Variations on Themes from Lost and Found: Scenes from a Life and other Works by John Bernd.

Aki Sasamoto. Photo: Ben Hagari.

Aki Sasamoto: Phase Transition

Thursday, January 9
Friday, January 10
Saturday, January 11
Thursday, January 16
Friday, January 17
Saturday, January 18

Installation open: 3-6pm (Free and open to all)
Performances: 8pm

Phase Transition is a new performance installation by multimedia artist, Aki Sasamoto. Curated by Danspace Project Associate Curator & Program Director, Lydia Bell, the work will unfold over two weeks with open installation hours and performances.

An installation and performance artist, Sasamoto works in various media, finding material inspiration in response to the conditions of her site or surroundings. Sasamoto has received acclaim for her solo performance and exhibition works, and is celebrated as a frequent presence in the work of choreographer Yvonne Meier.

Phase Transition approaches the Danspace Project sanctuary at St. Mark’s Church as a distinct atmosphere, a micro universe of weather and wind conditions. Sasamoto will create an air circulation system specific to the space, punctuated with her signature lecture-performances, in which she and guest performers move and modify elements of the installation. The chemical notion of phase transition becomes a playful metaphor for life transitions, aging, and motherhood.

Collaborators include performer Jessica Weinstein, lighting designer Madeline Best, singer Alsarah, and multi-instrumentalist, Matt Bauder.

An accompanying publication, designed by Kyla Arsadjaja, published by Danspace Project,  and edited by Phase Transition curator Lydia Bell, will be available for purchase online in January 2020, during installation and performance hours, and at the publication party on January 11. Contributors include Sasamoto, Bell, Rachel Valinsky, Ishmael Houston-Jones, and Ben Hagari. More info on the publication party here.

Performance: Aki Sasamoto, Jessica Weinstein
Sound: Alsarah, Matt Bauer
Lighting Design: Madeline Best

 

Accessibility Danspace Project’s main entrance is fully wheelchair accessible via ramp. A same-level restroom is available near Danspace Project’s main performance space in the church sanctuary.

Aki Sasamoto works in sculpture, performance, video, and whatever more medium that takes to get her ideas across. In her installation/performance works, Aki moves and talks inside the careful arrangements of sculpturally altered objects, activating bizarre emotions behind daily life. She has collaborated with musicians, choreographers, mathematicians, and engineers. She has performed for choreographer Yvonne Meier and respect her hugely.

Her works appear in gallery spaces, theater spaces, as well as in odd sites. Her installation/performance works were shown at SculptureCenter, the Kitchen, Chocolate Factory Theater, Whitney Biennial 2010, MOMA-PS1, New York; National Museum of Art-Osaka, Yokohama Triennale 2008, Japan; Gwangju Biennial 2012, South Korea; Shanghai Biennale 2016, China; Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2016, India.

Photo: Ben Hagari.

Aki Sasamoto Phase Transition Publication Party

January 11, 4-6pm
RSVP

Coinciding with Aki Sasamoto’s Phase Transition, all are invited to celebrate the accompanying publication, designed by Kyla Arsadjaja, published by Danspace Project, and edited by Lydia Bell.

The publication features writing by Sasamoto, Bell, scholar Rachel Valinsky, and an intimate conversation between Sasamoto and choreographer Ishmael Houston-Jones. Valinsky’s essay, “To the Limit,” explores how Sasamoto uses “the motif of the limit across forms and containers,” tracing the origins of Phase Transition to previous works exploring scientific notions of change states, hypothesis, and flexibility. The conversation with Houston-Jones delves into Sasamoto’s early influence in dance improvisation, especially as a dancer in the work of Yvonne Meier.

The publication also features a series of photographs of Phase Transition in development by artist Ben Hagari.

The Phase Transition publication be available for purchase online,  during installation and performance hours, and at the publication release party.

 

Accessibility Danspace Project’s main entrance is fully wheelchair accessible via ramp. A same-level restroom is available near Danspace Project’s main performance space in the church sanctuary.

Photo: Melinda Ring.

Melinda Ring: Strange Engagements

Thursday, January 30, 8pm
Friday, January 31, 8pm
Saturday, February 1, 8pm

Choreographer Melinda Ring returns to Danspace Project with the all-new Strange Engagements, a highly physical, exuberant, and uninhibited work made for, and in collaboration with, an extraordinary group of dancers: Laurel Atwell, Talya Epstein, Paul Hamilton, Sam Kim, and Rainey White. Constructed from the dancers’ improvisations — research in which Ring asked them to act as a conduit channeling complex shared rhythms and inner music — this work is driven from within.

The dancers plunge into private combinations, often with separate agendas, while flashes of form and pattern illuminate the deliberateness of the polyrhythmic chaos. Like Ring’s X (2010), which premiered 10 years ago at Danspace Project, Strange Engagements is deeply musical, yet danced almost completely in silence — its unheard anthem loud and driving.

“The thrill of Strange Engagements is in watching the performers navigate its considerable performative demands,” writes Ring. “What I want to say is that this dance is going to be nuts, strong and rhythmic, monstrously intricate. They are going to dance the heck out of it.”

Created by: Melinda Ring in collaboration with Performers: Laurel Atwell, Talya Epstein, Paul Hamilton, Sam Kim, and Rainey White

 

Accessibility Danspace Project’s main entrance is fully wheelchair accessible via ramp. A same-level restroom is available near Danspace Project’s main performance space in the church sanctuary.

Melinda Ring, choreographer, born in Los Angeles, CA, has lived and worked in New York since 2001. She creates dances, performance pieces, videos and installations. Ring is a 2016 Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artist awardee, a 2017 Guggenheim Fellow and a 2019 NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellow in choreography from The New York Foundation for the Arts. Recent works have also been commissioned and supported by The Kitchen (2009, 2014), The Box Los Angeles, The Chocolate Factory, Yaddo (2014), Headlands Center for the Arts (1999, 2012), Whitman College (2016-2018), Annenberg Foundation (Metabolic Studio) (2012), Danspace Project (2020, 2010), Movement Research (2019, AIR 2005, 2014-2016), Bennington College (AIR 2018), and Gibney Dance Center (DiP 2016, 2013). She has developed programing as an artist-curator for Danspace Project (Platform 2011: Susan Rethorst: Retro(intro)spective). Contact Quarterly devoted Chapbook 6 to Forgetful Snow (2014). Educated Bennington College (MFA) and University of California, Los Angeles (BA); Critic in sculpture, Yale School of Art, 2014 – present; visiting Lecturer in Dance, UCLA, Spring 2016 (Movement Research exchange program).

The creation of Strange Engagements was made possible, in part, by the Danspace Project Commissioning Initiative and Production Residency Program with generous support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. This work was made possible, in part, through a 2019 Movement Research Residency, funded by the Katharine S. and Axel G. Rosin Fund. Initial development of this work was supported through a Bennington College Dance Program residency. Production support was provided by the friends of Special Projects.