Dance New Amsterdam (DNA) will showcase six emerging dance-makers in its RAW Material series, an annual program which supports the work of budding choreographers who have shown promise to affect the field of dance. This year's performances, tonight, October 4 and tomorrow, October 5, feature a broad spectrum of dance, with world premiere works by Tough Cookie Dance/Michael Philip Richman and Josselyn Levinson-Dustin, Ashley Brown, Hadley Smith, Kellie Lynch & Tara Lee Burns, Anna Marie Shogren, and Abby Zbikowski|the new utility. All artists worked with Bessie Award-winning choreographer Yanira Castro to prepare for the production. Both shows are at 7:30 p.m.
DNA's RAW Materialseries has been supporting new and emerging artists since 2000. The budding dance-makers work closely with a seasoned choreographer, developing their work through a six-month-long workshop intensive. Along with expert feedback from their artistic advisor, RAW artists receive subsidizedstudio space and marketing advice from DNA's administrative team.
"Being a mentor has been about supporting the work of these artists," says Yanira Castro, 2012 DNA Raw Material Advisor. "What has been remarkable to me about DNA's program is the production flexibility while simultaneouslyproviding a mentor as an anchor-that is essential to a process. My challenge is how to coordinate an evening that highlights each artist, while putting them in relationship with one another."
"I'm excited that DNA continues to serve the community of burgeoning choreographers with opportunities to work with exceptional artists like Yanira Castro," says Artistic and Executive Director Catherine Peila. "As an extension of our many professional development opportunities-including Choreographic Investigation Course (CIC), the Modern Guest Artist Series, Performance Project and more-RAW Material offers new dance-makers an opportunity to challenge their creativeprocesses, apply expert advice and strengthen ties to a community of their contemporaries."
Tough Cookie Dance, formed by co-artistic directors Michael Philip Richman and Josselyn Levinson-Dustin, will present the world premiere of Famous Waitress, a dance theater work that riffs off of gestures found in service-related professions, set to Igor Stravinsky's "The Rite of Spring." Richman currently dances with Sean Curran, and Levinson-Dustin performs with Motley Dance.
Choreographer Ashley Brown will show I AM, a work about the creative process divided into three sections-Creation, Judgment and Acceptance-set to original music by Andre "Chez" Lewis and Raynard "DJ XRAY" James. Brown studied at the Ailey School and has performed as a soloist in works by Nathan Trice, Travis Gatling, and Diane McIntyre, among others.
For the world premiere of LadyMargaretRhodaCrystalLaurenGail,choreographer Hadley Smith created an original score with samples from Etta James and The Rolling Stones. Smith most recently co-produced and choreographed for This Years' Collective, an evening of work presented by Brooklyn Arts Exchange. She received her BA in Dance from Barnard College in 2009.
Tara Lee Burns teams up with Kellie Lynch to present Pirates Have Parrots and Parrots Perch, a duet characterized by excessive and exhausting, full-bodied physicality with humor and adventure at its core. Burns and Lynch are both members of Adele Myers and Dancers. Burns has also performed with Alexandra Beller and Marjani Forte, among others. Lynch is currently touring with Doug Elkins' and Friends and has performed with Jennifer Archibald, Kyle Abraham and Rachel Bernsen.