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ANIKAYA Set To Perform In Somerville & New York City This Spring

Residency at ArtAssembled before heading to Gibney Dance for debut performances.

ANIKAYA has announced a one week residency in May at the ArtAssembled studio at Assembly Square, Somerville, MA before heading to New York City in June for the debut of its new work, The Women Gather.

ANIKAYA weaves together music, dance, visual art, new media and storytelling to create work that is resonant of deep-rooted traditions, without being bound to any one genre, place or practice. The mission at ANIKAYA is to break down the perceived boundaries between people, cultures, and art forms. Founder and Artistic Director Wendy Jehlen's unique approach to choreography incorporates elements of Bharata Natyam, Odissi, Capoeira, Kalaripayattu, West African dance, Butoh, and a wide-range of Contemporary movement and theater forms.

In Somerville, ANIKAYA will be in residence at ArtAssembled to create our new work, The Women Gather in preparation for a performance at the Gibney Dance in downtown Manhattan at GIBNEY 280.

The Women Gather will be created and performed by all women-identified artists of diverse culture, color, discipline and tradition. An ensemble of seven women from five countries will create sound and movement together live in an environment that they build, deconstruct, and recreate over the course of the performance.

"The Women Gather is a centering of women's experience, with a conscious awareness of the glorious diversity of gender presentation within women," said ANIKAYA's founder and Artistic Director Wendy Jehlen. "We are creating a ritual of healing."

ANIKAYA will host a series of open studio experiences in Somerville in May on Monday, May 16 and Wednesday, May 18 at 7-8pm at 495 Artisan Way, Assembly Square Somerville, MA. During these times, the public is invited to come into the space and witness parts of the process. The performers and lighting designer Annie Wiegand will be in the space working on a series of movement/sound/light/weaving scores. Audience members can come and go, or stay for the duration. They can leave comments and questions or stay until the end to discuss directly with the artists. All are welcome and we ask that all members of the public who come into the space be fully vaccinated and masked.

ANIKAYA will perform the first full iteration of The Women Gather at GIBNEY 280 in Manhattan on June 23-25. Please note, audience members must adhere to Gibney Center's COVID-19 policies. The performance times for New York City are as follows:

Thursday, June 23 at 8:00 PM

Friday, June 24 at 8:00 PM

Saturday, June 25 at 8:00 PM

Livestream tickets will also be available for those who are unable to attend. More information, including tickets and livestream access, can be found at gibneydance.org.

The Women Gather will have its Boston premiere in November 2022, followed by performances at Botswana's Maitisong Festival in December.

ANIKAYA has been evolving since 1998 under the direction of choreographer Wendy Jehlen. ANIKAYA'S work has so far extended to the US, Benin, Brazil, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Canada, Haiti, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Mali, Mozambique and Turkey. ANIKAYA's mission is to break down the perceived boundaries between people, cultures and art forms. ANIKAYA's work falls into two symbiotic, porous categories - performance and community engagement. Both come back to one essential change catalyst - kinesthetic empathy. ANIKAYA'S work questions the boundaries imagined between ourselves, and seeks to break down these imagined walls through an embodied practice of radical empathy.

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