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Dancing in the Streets

21 August 2015
Owen Dolan Park, Bronx

Dancing in the Streets commissioned a 15 minute piece, Stories, for Owen Dolan Park in the Bronx. Working with the festival’s Artistic Advisor, acclaimed site-specific choreographer, Joanna Haigood.

David Thomson created Short Stories, a work focusing on portraiture and voyeurism for three dancers—Omagbitse Omagbemi, Jodi Bender and Emmanuélle Phuon. Sharing the evening with Arthur Aviles who took over Owen Dolen Park with Ritual Dance 2000—a contemplative work in which up to 30 dancers will move in unison throughout the park, creating a sound score using their hands as a musical instrument—clapping and patting their bodies.

Joanna Haigood choreographed a bridge between Thomson’s and Aviles’ work that will serve as a transition from the massive scale of the latter to the minimalism and intimacy of the former. Seen in succession, the three works juxtapose the choreographers’ different approaches to scale, perspective, and audience engagement; and the ways in which each of them uses repetition and misdirection to echo or subvert the park’s spatial rhythms, to charge the environment, and to transform audiences’ experience of it.


Photo credits: David Thomson (Zach Schein), Jodi Bender (Eva Yaa Asantewaa)