VESSEL continues David Thomson’s research into the perception of identity, and the ways in which presence and absence operate within the human experience. Within an intricate physical installation (aka the “vessel” of the title), Thomson and his collaborating performers - Jaguar Mary X, Katrina Reid, Katie Workum and Nehemoyia Young - embody a physical practice developed specifically for the project, navigating pathways of transformation and altered states.
In December 2020, Andrea Kleine and Bobby Previte moved into The Chocolate Factory Theater and lived alone in the Covid-shuttered New York City venue for two weeks. They arrived with an air mattress, a toaster oven, a cooler of frozen Trader Joe’s meals, and an inflatable kiddie pool to bathe in. Every night they performed on stage for no one.
Dion TYGAPAW McKenzie presents their second work in progress presentation of Devil Woman (Obeah Woman), an opera in three parts—and their second commissioned project as a 2022 ISSUE Artist-In-Residence. Using Techno as their main genre of focus, the work urges us to renegotiate and expand our understanding of the genre.
Huevos a la Mexcla digs at the raw feelings and distortions generated by the arbitrary and intersecting physical and conceptual boundaries of race, culture, and laws - and attempts to conjure an objective sense of community and togetherness within those divisions.
Molt is a dance made with intense specificity for The Chocolate Factory Theater’s new space - reveling in four dancers’ by turns vulnerable, molting, and triumphant bodies; their operatic and primal voices; and the real-time morphing and mending of a large visual art installation by Ukraine/U.S-based visual artist Inna Babaeva.
“I know this story. It’s a story I’ve loved again and again. All I know is my body moving through time. Reminding myself that I have blood pumping through me, and that has to be enough. I walk and walk to keep from standing still. I think of my pelvis sloshing around in a tangle of muscle and tendon. So tight and bound, perhaps a sprinkle of arthritis. But if I keep walking I feel that I can. And if I can, then at least I will keep moving.”
Choreomaniacs, for five dancers, explores the phenomena of choreomania or “dancing plague” in which people danced themselves to death during the Middle Ages. An accompanying duet, Revolver, speaks to existential threat from super-catastrophes. Both deploy Westwater’s choreographic approach - the disorganized body - in which postmodern dance forms are destabilized. A subtext that dance itself causes pain binds these two works together.
Family Happiness is a new performance work about Jewish agression, unprocessed Jewish grief from the Holocaust, and current ramifications of those dynamics in Israel/Palestine. This piece continues May’s decade-long investigation into bodily control and the complicated system of victimhood and perpetration; prioritizing a space for culpability and catharsis.
Remember the future? Nova Express is the final edition of DECODER, a sound and image cutup machine, that has been turning out concerts, digital transmissions, video art, and sound recordings for the last 8 years. This Machine is for everyone - according to William Burroughs whose instructions were followed closely to create it.