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Plight Release & the Diasporic Body: Jesus & Egun

August 18 @ 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm

$8 – $14

In conjunction with Fahamu Pecou’s DO OR DIE: AFFECT, RITUAL, RESISTANCE, AAMP presents an afternoon performance of the New York Dance and Performance | Bessie Award-nominated work Plight Release and the Diasporic Body: Jesus & Egun by Lela Aisha Jones | FlyGround. Together, these works speak to the diverse ways in which Yoruba rooted artistic, cultural, and spiritual practices are being expressed in the U.S. black folk life.

Plight Release & the Diasporic Body is a series of works that bask in blackness as everyday diasporic phenomena and traverses, through the body and movement, what a diasporic orientation offers us as a guide towards individual and collective restoration. The purpose is to sustain practices of togetherness and solidarity by centering lived experiences and movement as fertile and effervescent resources.

Jesus & Egun works from the premise and concept expressed by Dr. Nzinga Metzger that “Jesus is an overworked ancestor (egun),” and we must look to all our ancestors and practices on the continuum to move into states of restoration. The work specifically looks at three states of being that include the Mothers of the church, the transcendent human potential of freestyle in the social dance form House, and matrons of Yoruba spiritual practice.

Guests for Performance One are encouraged to arrive at least 15 minutes early to check-in and explore the exhibition. The performance begins promptly at 2:15 pm, runs 20 minutes, and will be followed by a moderated discussion with Lela Aisha Jones | FlyGround. This event is standing room only with limited seating available.

Lela Aisha Jones is a movement performance artist, an interdisciplinary collaborator, and the Founding Director of Lela Aisha Jones | FlyGround, her creative home. She is a proud native of Tallahassee, FL and feels quite fortunate to live and create in Philadelphia, PA. Her work intimately intertwines personal and collective lived experiences of diasporic blackness as archived in and excavated from the body through dance. Her movement manifestations are grounded in notions of a traditional continuum and her current artistic, research, educational, and pedagogical orientations are inquiries into embodied activism, a diasporic nomadic, diasporic citizenship, embodied nostalgia/memoir, and reviving the body to thriving, through embodied release, restoration, and revival. Lela Aisha earned a Bachelor of Science in Health Science Education with a concentration in Community Health from the University of Florida (2000), a Master of Fine Arts in Dance from Florida State University (2004), and a doctoral degree from Texas Woman’s University in Dance Theory and Practice (2018).

As an organizer, she is invested in cultivating a society with more nurtured, insightful, and harmonized human beings through initiatives such as Dancing for Justice Philadelphia and The Requisite Movers Philadelphia as well as by facilitating Coming Together and Release and Restoration processing sessions to ignite individual locations of activism, oppression, privilege, trauma, and liberation in a collective and movement-based framework. Additional from 2017-2019 Lela Aisha has served as the Project Co-Director for Modupúe | Ibaye: The Philadelphia Yoruba Performance Project. The diverse offerings of Lela Aisha Jones | FlyGround are generously and continually supported by the Artist in Residence program at the Community Education Center and the Incubated Artist Program at Headlong. Lela Aisha is a 2015 Leeway Foundation Transformation Awardee, a 2016 Pew Fellow in the Arts, and a 2017 New York Dance and Performance Award | Bessie Nominee. In 2019, Lela Aisha joined the faculty of Bryn Mawr College as an Assistant Professor of Dance.

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August 18
2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
$8 – $14
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The African American Museum in Philadelphia
(215) 574-0380


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Garages in area $$, Close to public transportation


The African American Museum in Philadelphia
701 Arch St.
Philadelphia, PA 19106 United States
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(215) 574-0380
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