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The National Center for Choreography - Akron Hosts Work-in-Progress Showing of inCOPnegro

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Attendees will be invited to listen to excerpts of select interviews to offer context for the choreography, music, and spoken word of inCOPnegro.

The National Center for Choreography - Akron Hosts Work-in-Progress Showing of inCOPnegro

The National Center for Choreography - Akron has announced an open-to-the-public Work-in-Progress Showing of inCOPnegro by creative residency artist and choreographer Dominic Moore-Dunson (Akron, OH). inCOPnegro is both an evening-length dance-theatre performance and podcast, which explores concepts of safety and police relations through storytelling and a community and parenthood lens.

The creation of inCOPnegro has been shaped by one-on-one interviews between Moore-Dunson and Akron community stakeholders, police officers, and criminal justice workers, as well as those outside the region. At the Work-in-Progress Showing, attendees will be invited to listen to excerpts of select interviews to offer context for the choreography, music, and spoken word of inCOPnegro. Moore-Dunson reflects, "These interviews are first-person accounts of racial injustice and the impact of policing. By listening to them, attendees will have a deeper understanding of the social, cultural and civic dynamics at work, as well as intimate access to the core material of this new performance.

Inspiration for this project came from Moore-Dunson's own life experiences. He explains, "As a 31-year-old Black man, I have been pulled over by police no less than 45 times in my life. Then after the death of George Floyd in 2020, as a father-to-be, I realized for the first time I didn't only have to worry for my own safety, but that of my unborn son. I began reaching across my network asking Black parents, 'How do you teach your kids about the police?', and the overwhelming answer was, 'You just teach them to get home.'"

Highlighting an all-Black cross-disciplinary cast of five artists, inCOPnegro, includes artists: Chris Coles (composer and musician), Moore-Dunson (lead choreographer and dancer), Maya Nicholson (playwright and actor), Kevin Parker Jr. (assistant choreographer and dancer), and Floco Torres (hip hop musician).

Made for audiences of all ages, inCOPnegro and the forthcoming companion podcast, inCOPnegro: Black & Blue, both aim to peel back the stories of individuals on both sides of "the blue line" while Moore-Dunson, a new Black father, looks to answer the question, "How do we raise our children in a world where their safety is threatened every day?"

As a Creative Residency artist at NCCAkron, Moore-Dunson has leveraged the organization's resources, for example time, funding, and studio space, in the artistic creation process with his fellow artists. NCCAkron Executive/Artistic Director Christy Bolingbroke says, "The body is political and therefore the art of dance inherently carries the politics of the body, especially in terms of race and gender. When exploring complicated, unwieldy topics, dance is a powerful tool to employ the body to process these subjects. Dominic's community-centered choreographic research gives added voice and resonance to this incredibly important topic."

The finished work is anticipated to premiere at full scale in Winter/Spring 2023. To learn more about inCOPnegro or share a personal story for the forthcoming podcast, visit incopnegro.com.

Phase 1 of Moore-Dunson's Creative Residency at NCCAkron is supported by the Akron Civic Commons and the Akron Community Foundation's Vernon L. Odom Fund. The development of inCOPnegro is also supported by a residency at Akron Soul Train.

Event Details

Work-in-Progress Showing: inCOPnegro

Date: Wednesday, December 8, 2021, 7 pm - 8:30 pm ET

Location: Guzzetta Hall, 228 E Buchtel Ave, Akron, OH 44325, studio 194 (Level 1, lower levels)

Free and open to the public, limited seating

RSVP: nccakron.org/event-details/incopnegro

 

Photo credit: inCOPnegro artistic collaborators (L to R): Maya Nicholson, Chris Coles, Kevin Parker Jr., Floco Torres, Dominic Moore-Dunson (Photo by Blaak Media).


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