New York Live Arts to Welcome Molissa Fenley and Company, 10/2-5
New York Live Arts will present, as part of the Replay Series, works by Molissa Fenley spanning more than thirty years of her choreographic experiments in two varied programs October 2 - 5 at 7:30pm, with a lecture demonstration October 5 at 3:00pm. Fenley will present the world premiere of Found Object, the reconstructed solos The Floor Dances and Witches' Float, and the quartet Energizer, bridging her choreographic past with the present.
Fenley's newest work, Found Object, is a continuation of the creative format used for Cross Bridge (2012). Described by Brian Siebert of The New York Times as "deliberate and secure yet also swooshingly sensuous," Cross Bridge was guided partly by a choreographic journal Fenley found in her archives at Mills College dating from 2000, containing 33 movement phrases that were recorded but never created into a dance. Employing a similar method of instruction-following as resource material, Fenley asked playwright John Guare, poet Joy Harjo and writer Rudy Wurlitzer to provide written directions from which Fenley interpreted and created the choreography for this new work. A quintet featuring dancers Christiana Axelsen, Rebecca Chaleff, Fenley, Peiling Kao and actor RoseMary Quinn, Found Objectfeatures original music composed and performed by Erin Gee, lighting by David Moodey and props by sculptor Jene Highstein (1942 - 2013). Originally made for Fenley's 2010 work The Prop Dances: Pieces of Land, Highstein's hand props are included here as an homage to his artistry.
Two solos, The Floor Dances (1989), commissioned by the Dia Art Foundation, and Witches' Float (1993), commissioned by the Krannert Art Center, will be reconstructed by Fenley and performed by Fenley and former Merce Cunningham dancer Holley Farmer, respectively. As Deborah Jowitt described in a 2012 article forArts Journal, Fenley is known for "the elegantly arduous, repetitively patterned solos she created for herself from 1988 to 1997," and the performances at Live Arts will be an exclusive opportunity to view these celebrated, rarely seen solos. The Floor Dances, featuring sculpture by Richard Long and music by Henryk Gorecki, was choreographed in memory of the wildlife devastation following the Exxon Valdez oil spill in Prince William Sound, Alaska, in March 1989, and is performed within a circular space created by 45 granite stones. Witches' Float, a shamanic, transformational work, includes sculptures by Kiki Smith and music by Alvin Lucier.
Also part of the Replay Series will be the reconstruction of Energizer, one of Fenley's earliest works. Described in a 1980 article by Anna Kisselgoff of The New York Times as "the dance of the future...that blasts [the] audience into a new, and brave, world of dance," Energizer is a quartet featuring original music by Mark Freedman. Originally commissioned by Dance Theater Workshop in 1980, Energizer will be seen in its entirety for the first time since 1982, and will be performed by Axelsen, Chaleff, Fenley, Kao and Cassandra Neville.
Performances will take place in New York Live Arts' Theater. Come Early Conversations and Stay Late Discussions will also be featured with two shows. Tickets are $30 and $20. Tickets may be purchased online at tickets.newyorklivearts.org, by phone at 212-924-0077 and in person at the box office. Box Office hours are Mondayto Friday from 1 to 9pm, and Saturday and Sunday from 12 to 8pm.
Molissa Fenley and Company
Energizer; The Floor Dances; Witches' Float (Replay Series)
Found Object (World Premiere)
Oct 2 - 3 at 7:30pm
The Floor Dances; Found Object; Energizer
Oct 4 - 5 at 7:30pm
Witches' Float; Found Object; Energizer
Oct 5 at 3:00pm
Lecture; The Floor Dances; Energizer (Part 2 - Duet)
Performances take place at the New York Live Arts Theater, New York Live Arts, 219 W 19th Street, New York, NY 10011. Tickets: $30, $20. Call 212-924-0077 or visit www.newyorklivearts.org. Box Office hours: Monday-Friday 1 - 9pm; Saturday-Sunday 12 - 8pm.
Schedule of Related Events:
Oct 2 Stay Late Discussion: Remounting Remembering Reconstructing, Bill T. Jones in conversation with Molissa Fenley
Oct 3 at 6:30pm Come Early Conversation: RHYTHM FIELD, The Dances of Molissa Fenley moderated by Richard Move (Artistic Director of MoveOpolis! and Move-it Productions)
About Molissa Fenley and Company: Molissa Fenley has created 75 dance works during her continuing career. Her work has been presented throughout the United States, South America, Europe, Australia, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Taiwan and Hong Kong, and has been commissioned by the American Dance Festival, the Brooklyn Academy Of Music's Next Wave Festival, The Joyce Theater, Dia Art Foundation, Jacob's Pillow, Lincoln Center, the New National Theater of Tokyo, the National Institute of Performing Arts in Seoul, The Kitchen, Dance Theater Workshop and many others. Fenley received a New York Dance and Performance "Bessie" Award for Choreography forCenotaph (1985) and State of Darkness (1988). She is Professor of Dance at Mills College, in residence each spring semester, and often teaches choreography at the Experimental Theater Wing of New York University and repertory workshops at other universities, most recently at Bennington College. She has created numerous works on ballet and contemporary dance companies, most recently for Robert Moses' Kin, the Pacific Northwest Ballet and the Seattle Dance Project, and including Peter Boal, Repertory Dance Theater, Salt Lake City, the Ohio Ballet, the Australian Dance Theatre, the Deutsche Opera Ballet of Berlin, the National Ballet School of Canada, the Performing Dance Company at the University of Utah and the Korea/Japan Performing Arts Exchange Association. Her dances have also been performed by the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Elisa Monte and David Brown, Dance Alloy, Peggy Baker Dance Projects, Richard Move and Paz Tanjuaquio. She is a Guggenheim Fellow, a Fellow of the American Academy in Rome and a Master Artist of the Atlantic Center of the Arts. Recent awards include the NEA American Masterpieces Initiative for the reconstruction of Regions. Recent works include The Vessel Stories, with music by Philip Glass, Credo in Us, with music by John Cage and Cross Bridge: a collaboration with Holley Farmer, John Jesurun, David Moodey and RoseMary Quinn.
Upcoming events include a residency at Bogliasco in Genoa, Italy, performances of Desert Sea (2005) by the Repertory Dance Theater, Utah, performances of State of Darkness by the Pacific Northwest Ballet (1988, PNB 2007) and the publication of Rhythm Field: The Dance of Molissa Fenley, a book of essays written by Fenley and invited colleagues, by Seagull Press.
New York Live Arts is an internationally recognized destination for innovative movement-based artistry offering audiences access to art and artists notable for their conceptual rigor, formal experimentation and active engagement with the social, political and cultural currents of our times. At the center of this identity is Bill T. Jones, Executive Artistic Director, a world-renowned choreographer, dancer, theater director and writer.
We commission, produce and present performances in our 20,000 square foot home, which includes a 184-seat theater and two 1,200 square foot studios that can be combined into one large studio. New York Live Arts serves as home base for the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, provides an extensive range of participatory programs for adults and young people and supports the continuing professional development of artists. Our influence extends beyond NYC through our international cultural exchange program that currently places artists in Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
Photo Credit: Ian Douglas