The Chocolate Factory Theater Presents jess pretty's CALL AND RESPONSE In June

By: May. 28, 2024
The Chocolate Factory Theater Presents jess pretty's CALL AND RESPONSE In June
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The Chocolate Factory Theater concludes its Spring 2024 season with the premiere of call and response, a new dance performance by jess pretty. Tickets may be purchased in advance at

In call and response, jess pretty wraps her audience in a conceptual, and literal, embrace. Unfolding as a dance-based, experiential conversation - between pretty and her younger selves, her ancestors, and everybody else in the room - call and response is a kind of casual, yet devotional, soirèe or salon or kickback, with pretty as the host.

Within an environment of familiar (and familial) comforts - living room furniture, record player, books and plants; all of it bathed in continuous, deep blue light - call and response doles out laughter and music as soft (and generous) launching points for an experience of memory and reflection that is shared and felt as much as it is witnessed. It endeavors to slow down the room; and invites us to join in the attempt.

Choreographer / Performer: jess pretty. Creative Interlocutors: keyon gaskin & Niall Jones. Lighting Design / Tech Support / Set Design: Maggie Heath. DJ / Sound Practitioner: Tyler Hughley / DJ Luccihugh. Sound Consultant: Jeremy Touissaint-Baptiste.


jess pretty received an MFA in Dance with a minor in Queer Studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. she has shown her work at La Mama Experimental Theater Club (2017 La MaMa Moves Festival), New York Live Arts (as a 2016/17 Fresh Tracks artist), CATCH!, Gibney Dance Center, Brooklyn Studios for Dance, the CURRENT SESSIONS, panoply performing arts space, Green Street Studios, three ACDA conferences, and the Chocolate Factory Theatre. pretty has been an artist in residence at Kent State (2017), the Chocolate Factory Theatre, and the Center for Performance Research (2019-2020) and was also a 2020 member of the Queer Art Fellowship. pretty has collaborated and been a part of the works of: Will Rawls, Claudia Rankine, Kevin Beasley, Okwui Okpokwasili, Peter Born, Catherine Gallasso, David Thomson, Katie Workum, Niall Jones, Jennifer Monson, Cynthia Oliver, Leslie Cuyjet and Dianne McIntyre. pretty is currently the Creative Director of AUNTS. pretty recently relocated to Minneapolis, MN where she is an Assistant Professor of Dance at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities.


The Chocolate Factory Theater is an artist-centered organization, built by and for artists.  Co-founders Sheila Lewandowski and Brian Rogers began making work together in 1995 and quickly saw the need for a creative home to support their work and the work of fellow experimental performance-based artists.  The Chocolate Factory therefore has grown and developed within and through a creative process that centers the development of new work, as guided by makers.

The Chocolate Factory Theater exists to encourage and support performing artists in their process of inquiry. We engage with a community of artists who challenge themselves and, in doing so, challenge us. We believe that by supporting the labor of artists and the public presentation of their work, we contribute to elevating New York City as a thriving and more equitable wellspring of ideas.

The Chocolate Factory embraces artistic practice as an integral part of the artist's whole life, an essential component of the life of our community and a key element of a larger national and international artistic dialogue. As such, we host artists as our equal partners with shared autonomy, trust and appreciation.

Since its founding in 2004, The Chocolate Factory Theater has supported the development and presentation of new work by a community of local, national and International Artists working in dance, theater, performance, and related practices. 

The Chocolate Factory Theater continues its pioneering commitment to addressing labor conditions within the independent performing arts community by paying all lead artists, performers, designers and technicians a fair hourly wage, on the books, for all rehearsal and production hours within our spaces.

An extensive archive of The Chocolate Factory's past performances is freely available at


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