january - june 2019
Teaching SCENE Workshops with Yaa Samar! Dance Theatre at locations throughout New York City, a program supported in part by the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs.
On October 6, 2018, I performed The Playground with Yaa Samar! Dance Theatre: a multi-channel video installation and live durational performance which examines the role of games in popular culture to normalize war and violence. Featuring video footage from the American war in Iraq, the US/Colombia '94 World Cup match, and an xbox gaming station alongside four live performers stationed in cell-like rooms subjected to music torture techniques used on prisoners at Guatanamo Bay, The Playground invites audience members to question their own role as an observer in this context; at what point does their participation implicate them in the action of the game? This five-hour installation was performed as part of the 2018 Nuit Blanche Brussels festival.
A new evening length performance by Yaa Samar! Dance Theatre. Last Ward follows one man's journey towards death in a hospital room. Surrounded by the sterile mechanisms of modern medicine, the patient reflects on his life, relationships and connection to place, as the ritual of doctor visits and family calls merge with his imagination into a surreal landscape of tragedy and humor. Written and directed by Amir Nizar Zuabi, with choreography and music by Samar Haddad King, Last Ward blends dance and theater (in Arabic with English subtitles) in a highly-visual evening length performance. Preview performances took place in August, 2018 in Jerusalem and Haifa.
YSDT continued the creation process of our new evening-length dance theatre work, Last Ward, during La Fabrique Chaillot, a five week creative residency period in Paris. Last Ward follows one man's journey towards death in a hospital room. Surrounded by the sterile mechanisms of modern medicine, the patient reflects on his life, relationships and connection to place, as the ritual of doctor visits and family calls merge with his imagination into a surreal landscape of tragedy and humor. Written and directed by Amir Nizar Zuabi and choreographed by Samar Haddad King with Yaa Samar! Dance Theatre and guest artist Khalifa Natour, Last Ward blends dance and theater (in Arabic with English subtitles) in a highly-visual evening length performance.
This Spring I joined YSDT — with company members from Palestine in the US to collaborate for the first time — for the launch of a new creative process during residencies at the Dance Initiative Residency in Carbondale, CO, April 6 - 13, 2018, and Baryshnikov Arts Center Residency in New York, NY, April 16 - 21, 2018. Click here to read and listen to coverage on our Colorado residencies in the local news!
This new dance film, created with and inspired by photos by A-CHAN, was made in collaboration with Galen Bremer and Stephanie Sutherland, with choreography and performance by myself. The piece was featured as part of Sky and Cloud / Winter Spring, a photography exhibit by A-CHAN at +81 Gallery in SoHo, New York, February 15 - March 16, 2018.
Weft investigates how we weave our personal narrative from the people, places, and communities we come to know throughout our lives. Developed in residencies in the U.S and abroad through site-based improvisation, dance for camera, and studio practice, this multi-media solo work incorporates movement, music, film projection, and textiles in an intimate live performance that attempts to unravel the thread of one artist’s journey. Original score by Galen Bremer. World premiere on November 8, 2017 at Cucalorus Festival, Thalian Theater in Wilmington, NC.
October 16 - November 2 2017, I was an artist in residence at the Seoul Dance Center in South Korea for the development of Weft, a multimedia collaboration with composer/videographer Galen Bremer. During this time I also offered a series of workshops for movers of all levels at SDC, and for pre-professional dancers at the Ewha Dance Academy in Incheon. You can view more photos of my time in Seoul here.
Throughout the month of September 2017, Artistic Director Samar Haddad King and myself offered a series of workshops and lecture/presentations at Drew University (Madison, NJ) and Fordham University (Bronx and Lincoln Center campus). These programs focused on YSDT's work redefining and reclaiming space in conflict zones through artistic projects.
Against a Hard Surface, an evening-length work by Yaa Samar! Dance Theatre, asks what happens to a group of people isolated from the rest of the world by a wall. Created by theatre director Amir Nizar Zuabi and choreographer Samar Haddad King, Against a Hard Surface is a portrayal of human resistance and resilience in a dystopian landscape. World premiere: April 29, 2017, Ramallah Contemporary Dance Festival. Additional performances: Al-Hakawati Theatre, Jerusalem (May 3, 2017), Krieger Center, Haifa (May 4, 2017). European premiere: June 6-8, 2017, Theater der Welt Festival in Hamburg, Germany.
Against a Hard Surface is a production of Yaa Samar! Dance Theatre and supported by the A.M Qattan Foundation/ The Qattan Grant for Performing Arts 2016 and Covillo Lynch Foundation, and co-produced by Sareyyet Ramallah in partnership with the Palestinian Museum.
For the month of January, 2017 I was in process with Yaa Samar! Dance Theatre for the creation of a new work, Against a Hard Surface, at the Palestinian Museum in Birzeit, Palestine. This evening length piece about life under occupation will premiere at the Ramallah Contemporary Dance Festival on April 29, 2017.