: new work by women choreographers
and their collaborations with artists
The Actors Fund Arts Center
160 Schermerhorn Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Fri, Apr 8 at 7:30pm
Sat, Apr 9 at 7:30pm
Sun, Apr 10 at 4:3pm
The Edge of Sunset Gems (work-in-progress)
Performed by: XAOC Contemporary Ballet
Choreographer: Eryn Renee Young
Artist/Costume Design: Amanda Browder
Set Design: Amanda Browder [Future Phenomena]
Dancers: Kathleen Bollana, Debra Bona, Chiara Gagliardo, Rebecca Greenbaum, Jacline Henrichs, Alanna Newkirk, Isaac Owens, Danielle Rutherford
Program Note: The set is a fabric-based sculpture that was originally installed on a building in Greenpoint Brooklyn. All the fabric was donated by people from the Brooklyn area and was sewn during three public sewing days. The costumes are an original design for this ballet and are made to integrate the fluidity of the dancers with the geometric characteristic of the colorful backdrop
Found and Lost (work-in-progress)
Choreography: Lynn Parkerson
Set Pieces: Michelle Forsyth
Music: Malcolm Parson, “Ti Gason Nwa”, Lester Young, “Lester Leaps in”
Dancers: Courtney Cochran, Fredrick Davis, Paunika Jones, Bobby “Anime” Major, Maxwell Simoes, Christine Sawyer
Cellist: Malcolm Parson
Rehearsal Director: Pascal Benichou
Music: Opening by Philip Glass ©1981 Dunvagen Music Publishers Inc. Used by Permission
Choreographer: Brenda R. Neville
Artist/Set: Courtney Puckett
Dancers: Sarah Taylor, Tanya Trombly, Amanda Summers
Let me be Clear
Choreographer : Ursula Verduzco presenting Benjamin Briones Ballet
Artist/set pieces: Sarah Bednarek
Costumes by UBCostumesandDancewear
Music: Red Run Tao Drummers
Dancers: Sarah Rodak, Elisabeth Jeffrey, Kylie Fox, Eva Janiszewski, Asha Sienkiewicz , Julia S Bengtsson, Savannah Lee, Ursula Verduzco, Richard Ye, Jordan Fife Hunt
spring is almost here
Choreographer: Janice Rosario
Artist/Costume + Projection : Jessica Weiss
Video artist: Zander Padget
Dancer: Sarah Rodriguez
Music: Luotasi by Vladislav Delay and from Vivaldi: The Four Seasons by Joshua Bell and Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Concerto in F minor III. Allegro
Choreographer: Julia K Gleich
Artist/Design: Rachel Beach
Dancers: Tiffany Mangulabnan, Izabela Szylińska and Kara Chan
Sound design: Julia K. Gleich
Music: Donald Trump China mash up YouTube, Joe Jackson, Found sound – Pile driver from Philadelphia Naval Yard
Kristin Draucker with sculptor Kara Daving
Kristin Draucker trained at the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet under Marcia Dale Weary and was a Fellowship student at The Ailey School. She has danced for Michael Mao Dance, Karole Armitage, Tino Sehgal and was on the 50th Anniversary International Tour of West Side Story. Kristin has presented work in NYC and Spoleto, Italy and is a founding member of the dance collective Chimera Project.
While narrative drives the work of Kara Daving, her use of wide-ranging and unconventional plastic materials complete the story. She is interested in the physical qualities of inflatable pool toys and found plastic sea debris for formal considerations. Color, texture and abstraction provide an aesthetic experience, one that involves the passing from disturbance to harmony. She is also fascinated by the cultural context of everyday materials and how they can contribute to the conceptual framework. Putting aside the use-value and focusing on the material’s social value, one can consider where the material came from, what it means to people and what anecdotes are attached to the history of the materials.
Julia K. Gleich with sculptor Rachel Beach
Julia K. Gleich divides her artistic energies between London and New York. She is Co-Founder of Norte Maar based in Brooklyn, NY where she is the director of CounterPointe and Dance at Socrates. Her choreography has been produced internationally. Her dance films have been screened in galleries and festivals in the US and Asia. Gleich’s choreography has been reviewed in The New York Times, Village Voice, The New Criterion, ArtNews, Brooklyn Rail and DanceInsider. Her original research on movement theories using Vectors was published in the Dynamic Body in Space. Julia is Head of Choreography at London Studio Centre, on the technique faculty of Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance (Ballet and Limón), and Artistic Director/ Choreographer of Gleich Dances. She was External Examiner for Hong Kong APA and was awarded the Distinguished Alumna medal for 2014 by the Ballet Department at the University of Utah where she received her MFA.
Rachel Beach was born in London, Canada and lives in New York City. She received her MFA from Yale University in 2001 and BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 1998. She is the recipient of numerous awards including a 2015 American Academy Affiliated Fellowship at the American Academy in Rome, a residency at the Marie Walsh Sharpe Foundation (2013-14), a Pollack-Krasner Grant (2013), Yaddo Artist Residencies (2012,2015), LMCC Residency (2015), Canada Council for the Arts grants (2002, 2009), and residencies at the Lower East Side Printshop and Socrates Sculpture Park. Her work has been widely presented at venues including the Philbrook Museum, Tulsa, OK; Blackston Gallery, NYC; Postmasters, NYC; Lennon Weinberg, NYC; The University of Tennessee; Stonybrook University, NY; The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia and PlugIn Institute of Contemporary Art, Winnipeg MA. Her work has been reviewed in The New York Times, Art in America, Hyperallergic, ArtCritical, NYArts Magazine and The Brooklyn Rail among other publications.
Brenda Neville with sculptor Courtney Puckett
Brenda R. Neville is an international performer, accredited teacher and choreographer, with her work having been described as “compelling”, “imaginative” and a “pure delight” by critics. For over two decades and in more than 18 countries, Brenda performed classical and contemporary ballet with the Milwaukee Ballet, Butler Ballet and Indianapolis Dance Company; Argentine Tango, Flamenco and Irish Step Dance with international touring company All Nations Dance Company and artists from Riverdance and Cirque de Soleil, plus lead roles in regional productions of Crazy for You, La Cage aux Folles and Footloose. Since 2006 she has choreographed and staged three full length ballets and numerous contemporary concert dance works for her New York based company Neville Dance Theatre, which performs throughout the New York area and beyond at venues and prestigious festivals including Dixon Place, the 92nd Street Y, The Ailey Theatre, The Riverside Theatre and Jamaica Performing Arts Center. Brenda is a faculty ballet teacher at Covenant Ballet Theatre of Brooklyn and at The Ailey School.
Courtney Puckett lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She holds a BFA from MICA and an MFA from Hunter College and studied at the Center for Art and Culture in Aix-en-Provence, Glasgow School of Art, and University of New Mexico. Puckett has been an Artist-in-Residence at the Vermont Studio Center and Byrdcliffe Arts Colony. Group exhibitions include BRICArts, Wallspace, Noyes Museum of Art, CUAC Utah, Seton Hall University, Long Island University, and Jamaica Center for Art. Puckett is a recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts project grant and was featured on Hyperallergic and The New York Times Art Blog.
Lynn Parkerson with artist Michelle Forsyth
Lynn Parkerson, Founding Artistic Director, Brooklyn Ballet, began her career as a choreographer and improvisor while living in Germany. Joachim Ernst-Berendt of the Deutsches Allgemeines Sonntagsblatt described her dancing “…she makes music with her body like a musician on his instrument, and when she moves we feel it, that’s the way free music should be danced.” Ms. Parkerson’s choreography has been presented at many prominent international events and venues, including the Munich Theater Festival, Frankfurt’s Theatre am Turm, the Florence International Festival of Dance, Moers New Jazz Festival, Jazz Festival Baden-Baden, in West Virginia at Davis Elkins College, at An Appalachian Summer Arts Festival in Boone, NC, and in theaters, gardens, museums, and street corners all over Brooklyn.
Michelle Forsyth’s work is a testament to memories. Each work she creates is accompanied by a memory, and she loves to load her work with secret meanings. These additions, often written en verso, began as a fascination with the experiences of others—the public testaments of personal strife often used by the media to trigger an emotional response—has evolved into a focus on her narratives much closer to home. Forsyth holds an MFA from Rutgers University (New Brunswick, NJ), and a BFA from the University of Victoria (Victoria, BC). Recent exhibitions include: Mulherin + Pollard, (New York, NY); Zaum Projects (Lisbon, Portugal); Pentimenti Gallery (Philadelphia, PA); Auxiliary Projects (Brooklyn, NY); The Hunterdon Museum of Art (Clinton, NJ); The Charleston Heights Arts Center (Las Vegas, NV); Deluge Contemporary Art (Victoria, BC); and Mercer Union (Toronto, ON). Forsyth has been the recipient of grants from the Canada Council for the Arts (Ottawa, ON), Artist Trust (Seattle, WA), and was awarded the Larry Sommers Memorial Fellowship (Seattle Print Arts, WA). She currently serves on the board of CARFAC Ontario and has taught at Pratt Institute (New York, NY); Brooklyn College (Brooklyn, NY); University of Southern Maine (Gorham, ME); Washington State University (Pullman, WA); and is currently an associate professor at OCAD University (Toronto, ON).
Janice Rosario with painter Jessica Weiss
Janice Rosario is a NYC-based dancer & choreographer. Born and raised in upper Manhattan, Janice grew up surrounded by New York’s vibrant arts scene, where she studied classical ballet, Horton, Post Modern & the Graham technique. She studied on scholarship at Ballet Hispanico, Ballet Academy East, Boston Ballet, and the Alvin Ailey School. She attended and graduated from F.H. LaGuardia High School for the Performing Arts as a Dance major. She stayed in New York during her college years to attend Hunter College, majoring in Dance. She made her choreographic international debut at the Tobago Contemporary Dance Festival in late March 2015.She was commissioned to present an entire evening length work at The Secret Theater in March 2015. She was also awarded a grant from The Chen Dance Center to create work for the NewSteps Series in May 2015. She is the 2015 Spring Solo Commission Recipient from The Moving Beauty Series. Janice was invited by David Parker to present an entire evening of work at the West End Theater in September 2015. She was asked to create and present a new work at Dixon Place with projected art drawings by architect, Yuri Birchwood-Fuentes in March 2016. She has also taught master classes at Hunter College and for the Contemporary Dance Festival in Tobago.
Jessica Weiss is a native New Yorker who received her BA from Oberlin College and studied at the New York Studio School in the mid 1970s. The recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts’ Fellowship in Painting in 1989, Weiss has had solo exhibitions at A. M. Richard Fine Art (Brooklyn), Nicole Klagsbrun Gallery (New York City) and she has an upcoming solo exhibit at Outlet Fine Art in Bushwick in April. Her work has been reviewed in The New York Times, Art in America, TimeOut NY, The Baltimore Sun, and the New York Observer. Weiss has appeared in numerous group exhibitions including “Two Friends and So On” at Andrew Kreps, “Seaworthy” at Edward Thorpe, “Three Degrees of Separation” at Sonnabend Gallery, “The Stroke” (selected by Elizabeth Murray) at Exit Art and “Between a Place and Candy” (curated by Jason Andrew) at 1285 Avenue of the Americas Gallery.
Ursula Verduzco with sculptor Sarah Bednarek
Ursula Verduzco is currently a Freelance Dancer in NYC and abroad. Trained at Ballet Austin Academy and the Joffrey Ballet School with full scholarship. After graduating she has danced with several companies including Ballet Austin, Staten Island Ballet, Benjamin Briones Ballet, New York City Opera, Eglevsky Ballet, Ajkun Ballet Theatre, Connecticut Ballet, Some Dance Company, Veracity Dance Theatre, New York Dance Theatre, Dance Theatre in Westchester, Ad Hoc Ballet, Ballet Neo among others, performing in classical and contemporary repertoire. She was honored to appear in Dance Magazine as one of the dancers to highlight in their “Race Issue”, July 2010. As a choreographer Ms. Verduzco has created commissioned works for The Staten Island Ballet, Ellison Ballet, Benjamin Briones Ballet and Nomad Contemporary Ballet with whom she finished a 2nd Commissioned work in 2013 and Periapsis Music and Dance in 2014. She is the Founder and Director of the Latin Choreographers Festival since 2008.
Sarah Bednarek is a 2005 MFA graduate of the Sculpture and Extended Media program at Virginia Commonwealth University. Her exhibition record includes curated shows at the Gibbes Museum and Postmasters Gallery. She has shown internationally at the Keith Talent Gallery in London, where she was also published in the magazine Miser and Now. Her record includes solo shows in Cleveland, Richmond, and St. Paul and she has received several awards and scholarships in support of her art and education. Sarah received her MFA in sculpture from VCU after which she taught for a year. Though a Milwaukee native she currently lives and works in Brooklyn.
Eryn Renee Young with artist Amanda Browder
Eryn Renee Young is co-founder and resident choreographer of XAOC Contemporary Ballet, a New York City-based neoclassical ballet company founded in 2010. Her choreographic work has been showcased at The Ailey Citigroup Theater, the Young Choreographer’s Festival at Symphony Space, Boston Contemporary Dance Festival at the Paramount Theater, the White Wave Dumbo Dance Festival, the Martha Graham Studio Theater, the Counter/Pointe Series presented by Norte Maar, the Valentina Kozlova International Ballet Competition, the Brooklyn Dance Festival, the Choreographer’s Canvas at Manhattan Movement and Arts Center, NYC10: an initiative for NYC Dance Week at Dixon Place, Dance New Amsterdam, Triskelion Arts Center, Steps on Broadway, the Moving Beauty Series, the Algonquin Arts Center, Peridance Capezio Center, the Boston Conservatory, the Bart Leukede Theater at Rider University, and New York University, including a solo choreography show entitled A New Era: Elements of Dance in 2009 and another in the Gallatin Arts Festival in 2012. Awards include 2015 Edward Villella Emerging Choreographers Competition at Rider University, 2015 Manhattan Community Arts Fund Grant for her ballet outreach program “Project Ignite,” 2014 Eryc Taylor Dance New Choreography Grant, selection as a mentee for the 2013 Dance/USA Institute for Leadership Training, and selection as a choreographer for the 2013 Women in Dance Series. Ms. Young holds a degree in Contemporary Ballet Choreography and Fine Art from New York University. She began choreographing in 2007 and draws inspiration from Balanchine-Stravinsky works, classical sculpture, Greek myth, Christopher Wheeldon, and William Forsythe.
Amanda Browder is a visual artist and local loud-mouth in Brooklyn, NY. Born in Missoula, MT, Browder moved to Chicago to teach at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2001-07). In 2007 Amanda moved to New York. Browder has shown nationally and internationally such as the Nakaochiai Gallery, Tokyo, Japan; Lothringer 14, Munich, Germany; White Columns, New York; Mixture Contemporary Gallery, Houston, TX; The Missoula Museum of the Arts, Missoula, MT; Gallery 400-UIC, and The Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago. In 2015 Browder covered a building in her local neighborhood and received a grant from Brooklyn Arts Council and the NPArt. Although she and Christo live in the same city, she strives to have an arm wrestling contest as a way to see who will be the first one to cover the Statue of Liberty. She is a founding member of the art-podcast www.badatsports.com.
CounterPointe2016 is presented in collaboration with Brooklyn Ballet and is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.
A huge thank you to the following local businesses for their support and donations:
- Fish Tales Gourmet Seafood Market
- Mia’s Brooklyn Bakery
- Free Range Wine
- Brooklyn Fare
- Red Star Sandwich Shop
- Stinky Brooklyn
- One Girl Cookies – Cobble Hill
- Smith and Vine
And thank you to the Board of Directors of Norte Maar!
The Actors Fund Arts Center serves as a resource for Brooklyn based artists and arts groups to aid in the development and sharing of their work, as well as a venue for integrating the residents of The Schermerhorn with the surrounding community through the arts. AFAC is operated by The Actors Fund, a national human services organization that helps professionals in performing arts and entertainment in times of need, crisis or transition.