photo by Tayarisha Poe
On April 1 and 2, at 8pm, idiosynCrazy productions presents Rhythm and Race, bringing together five separate works in dance and performance – two from Shannon Murphy, two from Jumatatu Poe, and one collaboration between the two of them. Poe’s two works are Philadelphia premieres, and the collaboration is a brand new work, being shown for the first time. Murphy’s two works have both been presented in Philadelphia before in various shows shared with other local choreographers and companies.
Shannon Murphy will share her dance quintet, Feet Amass, in which she and four other dancers wrestle with the capacity of unison within choreography to create a performance community within the scope of a single dance work. She also presents Multiplicity of Me, a trio for three women last seen in a shared show with Gina Hoch-Stall’s RealLivePeople. Multiplicity of Me, also interested in problematizing unison choreography, looks at intersections of movement and text among performers as a tool to explore a shared performance autobiography. Jumatatu Poe’s Salt and Let ‘im Move You: This is a Success both examine the performance of Blackness, inside of the pressure cooker of African-American exceptionalism ideologies. Salt, part performance art installation, part dance work, is a solo performed by Poe – wrapped in a plastic loincloth, wearing Black sclera contact lenses, keeping time in relationship to an incessant digital metronome. Let ‘im Move You is a duet performed by two Black men, steeped in J-Sette movement vocabulary and codes of relationality. J-Sette, with roots in majorette-style dance from historically Black colleges and universities, is an underground dance style popular in the Southern gay Black club scene. The untitled collaboration between Murphy and Poe is the newest work being presented, and deals with the lineage of the 8-year friendship between the two artists, the complexities of presentation lining up in the respective bodies of a Black, queer cis-man and a White, femme cis-woman.
Rhythm and Race is the first co-presentation of work by Shannon Murphy and Jumatatu Poe since 2012. In that time, the two have been developing performance work separate from one another, showing work mostly between New York City and Philadelphia, and collaborating with one another on community salon conversations centered around integrations of art in current socio-political phenomena. This April performance will be a reunification of their choreographic voices within the Philadelphia community.
idiosynCrazy productions was founded by Jumatatu Poe (2012 Pew Fellow) in 2008 as a choreographic outlet for his dance/theater works. In 2009, Shannon Murphy (2013 FringeArts LAB Fellow) and Shavon Norris joined Jumatatu as co-Directors of idiosynCrazy productions. Currently, the company is directed by Poe and Murphy, and focuses on the presentation of dance and performance work created by the two artists individually and/or together, organizing educational programming for artists and/or focused on art creation, and creating opportunities for artists and non-artists to imagine employments of art to address socio-political realities. Mascher Space Co-op was founded in 2005. Mascher is an artist-run private studio in Old Kensington that provides a home for independent dance artists and small companies to develop and perform their work, as well as teach classes and workshops. In addition to offering affordable rehearsal space, Mascher has been the instigator and partner in a number of beneficial programs for the Philadelphia contemporary dance community: IN FLUX Performance Series, Low Lives, FALLS BRIDGE: new movement, improvisation and performance festival, Philly Dance COSMOS Contemporary Dance Class Series, CURRENT evenings of live art and Fresh Juice: Artist in Residence performances. idiosynCrazy productions is a member artist organization at Mascher.
Rhythm and Race
Friday, April 1, 8pm
Saturday, April 2, 8pm
Mascher Space Co-Op, 155 Cecil B Moore Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19122
(runtime approximately 90 minutes)
Tickets: $15; $10 for artists and students, purchase at the door or online at http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2530603
Directed by: Shannon Murphy and Jumatatu Poe
Cast of performers includes: Danielle Currica, Ann-Marie Gover, Shannon Murphy, Jumatatu Poe, William Robinson, Michele Tantoco, Megan Quinn