Platform 2016: Variations on Themes from Lost and Found: Scenes from a Life and other works by John Bernd – Danspace Project
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Platform 2016: Variations on Themes from Lost and Found: Scenes from a Life and other works by John Bernd

John Bernd, 1980s, NYC. Photo by Dona Ann McAdams.

Post-performance discussion with Lucy Sexton on Friday, November 4.

In 1988 choreographer/dancer John Bernd died at age 35 of complications of AIDS. Bernd was a pivotal figure in the early days of the New York downtown dance scene of the early 1980s. He was one of the first persons from the community to contract HIV (though the virus had yet to be identified). He created several solos, semi-autobiographical pieces, a duet– Live Boys –made in collaboration with his then partner Tim Miller, and three versions of an ensemble dance, Lost and Found: scenes from a life. Bernd’s final piece was a duet, Two on the Loose, made in collaboration and performed with choreographer Jennifer Monson months before he died on August 28, 1988.

Platform 2016: Lost & Found was initiated by Ishmael Houston-Jones‘ memories of Bernd’s work and the work of other New York dance makers who died during the first 15 years of the AIDS crisis, 1981-1996. Houston-Jones and his collaborators use archives of Bernd’s work to produce a collage of work he made during the last years of his life to interrogate what the effects of that loss have had on work being made today.

Directed by Ishmael Houston-Jones in collaboration with Miguel Gutierrez, Jennifer Monson, and Nick Hallett, with performers Tony Carlson, Talya Epstein, Alvaro Gonzalez, Charles Gowin, Madison Krekel, Johnnie Cruise Mercer, and Alex Rodabaugh.

Part of PLATFORM 2016: Lost and Found
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