The Pocho Project is an evening-length performance that brings together choreography, auto-ethnographic texts, and video to explore the slippery relationships between speech, language, and movement. (“Pocho” is a somewhat derisive term for assimilated Mexican-Americans). Created by choreographer James Moreno, The Pocho Project adapts and explores how cultural identity, immigration, assimilation, and cultural “gatekeeping” are embedded in the ways we move, talk, and write.
Performing Homeis a performance project engaging the multivalent meanings, spaces, and movement that construct what we call home. Home is at once intensely personal and abstractly social; structured both through individual experience and legal decree. Spanning a range of movement practices and positionalities, the work in Performing Home was created with dramaturgical support from scholars, a lay historian, and a housing activist.
Anita Gonzalez & Joel Valentín-Martínez/The Living Lakes
An excerpt from The Living Lakes, a multi-disciplinary dance theatre project that explores African American and Latino migrations in the Midwest between 1915 and 1935, focusing on community enclaves and sites of labor. Through tableaux, dance movement landscapes, projections, and vocalized soundscapes, The Living Lakes tells the story of multi-ethnic families making a place for themselves as they travel from South to North.
In her first major choreographic work, Fraser reflects upon the meaning of "home” within the context of the African Diaspora. (re)location is inspired by the journey that Fraser’s ancestors underwent from the African continent to Jamaica, the UK, and America. Dance is movement and movement is (re)location.
J’Sun Howard/excerpt fromWorking on Better Versions of Prayers
This never-before-seen excerpt from Howard’s forthcoming evening-length work deals with home: the displacement around ideas of the father. Working on Better Versions of Prayers is a poetic testimony that seeks to make a charismatic space for joy, perform the intimacy between queer men of color, and explore the work of practicing freedom. It flirts with notions of divine radical presence and how it sanctifies.
Through utilitarian movements and chanted text, CloisterSong explores the veiled domestic of those who facilitate and support the interior lives of others. Centralizing historically femme narratives of motherhood, nuns, and those who provide emotional or supportive care, CloisterSong posits labor as a unifying force within cultural systems that discredit and yet are sustained by feminized work.
Read more about Performing Home movement makers and dramaturgs here.
Performing Home is funded in part by Illinois Humanities. Illinois Humanities is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Illinois General Assembly (through the Illinois Arts Council Agency), as well as by contributions from individuals, foundations and corporations.
Brittney Leeanne Williams
Brittney Leeanne Williams is a Chicago-based studio artist who is originally from LA. She attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture (2017), and the School of the Art Institute (2008-2009). Her work has exhibited in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Venice, Italy, San Francisco, and throughout the Midwest. Brittney is currently an artist-in-residence at U Chicago's CSRPC/Arts + Public Life. She has also had residencies at Chicago Artists Coalition (HATCH Projects), as well as at Hyde Park Art Center's The Center Program.
Writers, singers, composers, performance artists, filmmakers and comedians share their work and how they’re preparing for the new administration in a cabaret setting.
Participating artists include: Jeanette Andrews; Alexa Græ; Joshua Kent; The Laboratory for the Development of Substitute Material; Derek McPhatter; Elaine Phillips; Mitsu Salmon; with films by Ginger Krebs/Sara Zalek/Eugene Sun Park; Benjamin Rosenthal.
January 20, 2017 at High Concept Labs at Mana Contemporary Chicago
An evening of performance constructed within a post-digital context, presented at High Concept Labs. Curated and produced by Cynthia Bond, body ± New Works in Dance and Technology featured 3 dance works by visual artists and choreographers interrogating technology as it both supplements and supplants the moving body. (Spring 2016)
human, nextis a performance piece for dancers, video monitors, and projections. Choreographed by James Moreno with video and sound design by Benjamin Rosenthal, human, next has been presented in NYC and Chicago.
A companion video adaptation project has screened at galleries and film festivals in NYC, Sao Paulo, Brazil, Germany, Greece, Colombia, Mexico, and Italy, among others.
Stills from video adaptation project of human, next: phase II (Video: Benjamin Rosenthal; Choreography: James Moreno)
The Sun King
The Sun King is a one-act ballet choreographed by Elements Contemporary Ballet Resident Choreographer Joseph Caruana, based on the life of French monarch Louis XIV and his relationship with his official court composer, Jean-Baptiste Lully. The Sun King tells the story of ballet’s beginnings at Louis XIV’s court and features live music, including compositions by Lully, performed by a period instrument orchestra The Sun King premiered in 2014 at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion, and was remounted in 2016.
(Photo: Topher Alexander)
Self-Deportation: The Untold Tale of a Marginal Woman
A short film written and directed by AAIFF 2014 Screenplay Award winner Eugene Sun Park. An allegory about American identity, racial narratives, and xenophobia, Self-Deportation is shot in an experimental style, employing highly theatrical set design and choreography. The film is recipient of an Illinois Arts Council grant and was an official selection of the 2015 Korea Indie & Expat Film Festival (Seoul), 15th annual Asian Pacific American Film Festival (D.C.), the Ithaca Pan-Asian Film Festival, CineBodega, the Speechless Film Festival, and Absinthe Pop Art Festival.
Mojo Hobo: The Video
One of the original Chicago punk bands from the 1970's, Silver Abuse stars in this music video based on a poem band member Robert Porché wrote when he was 11. It's German Expressionism meets the Monkees as our fearless Punks struggle through a neo-Depression, singing all the way. Written and photographed by artist Gretchen Hasse, MOJO HOBO: THE VIDEO had its Chicago premiere in October 2014 and was an official selection of the North Portland Unknown Film Festival, in the Unknown Television division (2015).
Official selection, 2015 North Portland Unknown Film Festival/Unknown Television Section
Book of Hours
Book of Hours is a text-based performance piece which draws on a 12 poem series of the same name. (In development)
from the "Tres Riches Heures de le Duc de Barry" (March)