New York Live Arts presents Lobby Talks: Transgender in Dance

Lobby Talks
Transgender in Dance
October 18 at 7:30pm

New York, NY, October 10, 2011 – New York Live Arts announces the first installment of the 2011-2012 Lobby Talks series on Tuesday, October 18 at 7:30pm. The Lobby Talks series is coordinated by Chase Granoff, this year in collaboration with an invited guest curator for each talk. This conversation, co-coordinated with panelist Yve Laris Cohen, will focus on Transgender in Dance and surrounding issues in contemporary performance and dance with additional panelists niv Acosta and devynn emory, moderated by Jeanne Vaccaro.

This conversation will engage with various practitioners in contemporary dance and performance who identify as transgender or gender variant. The dialogue will explore several themes, including how the gendered body finds itself within a heightened state of display and awareness.
Originally created by Dance Theater Workshop, Lobby Talks creates a forum for open and in-depth discourse on contemporary issues in dance and performance. Conceptual themes are investigated, challenged, and considered by an invited group of artists, critics, and theorists, and discussions are open to all who would like to participate.

Lobby Talks take place in New York Live Arts’ lobby. Admission is FREE; reservations are not required. New York Live Arts is located at 219 West 19th Street (between 7th and 8th Avenues) in New York City. Following the live discussion, Lobby Talks are available for download on iTunes.

niv Acosta (panelist)
niv Acosta, born in Washington Heights Manhattan, is 23 years old and transgender. niv trained at the Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance with Tadej Brdnik, Jessica Delia, and Catherine Cabeen. niv went to California Institute of the Arts for 2 years where he studied dance technique and choreography. He also attended American Dance Festival for the summers of 2007 and 2008. niv danced with Gestures Dance Ensemble in Harlem his senior year of high school. niv has shown his work at various events/spaces including The Sharon Disney Lund Theater in Los Angeles, in Open Performance in New York City, The Community Education Center in Philadelphia. Thanks to the Leeway Foundation niv was also awarded an Art and Social Change Grant and curated/performed/choreographed for gender < moving: queer bodies/home with iele paloumpis and Jai Arun Ravine. He has worked on projects with Larissa Velez-Jackson, Hilary Clark, iele paloumpis, Philadelphia Dance Projects, Greg Holt, Ishmael Houston-Jones, and Jody Oberfelder Dance Projects. This Fall season niv will be performing with Brennan Gerard and Ryan Kelly for Reusable Parts/Endless Love at Danspace Project.

Yve Laris Cohen (Co-coordinator, panelist)
Yve Laris Cohen makes performances, objects, and the occasional video. All of it is dance. He received a BA in Dance and Performance Studies and Art Practice from the University of California, Berkeley, and an MFA in Visual Art from Columbia University. Yve was a 2010 Fresh Tracks resident at Dance Theater Workshop, and is currently a Movement Research Artist in Residence. He is a fellow in the inaugural year of the Queer/Art/Mentorship program. As a performer, Yve has worked with Lindsay Clark, Miguel Gutierrez, Ryan Kelly and Brennan Gerard, Jennie MaryTai Liu, William Pope.L, Emily Roysdon, Faye Driscoll/The National Theater of the United States of America, and looks forward to dancing with Yvonne Meier this fall.

devynn emory (panelist)
devynn emory is a choreographer and dancer from Philadelphia, and has been in New York for 2 years. emory strives to make space for gendervariant bodies on stage, and makes work with their company devynnemory/beastproductions that supports this idea. Currently de/bp has a Studio Series residency at New York Live Arts and is a company member of Headlong Dance Theater and has been touring the piece More co-designed by HDT, Tere O’Connor and the dancers. The company has had a Space Grant residency at BAX, and Fresh Tracks residency at Dance Theater Workshop. emory was a New Edge Mix recipient, three-year resident choreographer of the Susan Hess Choreographers Project, and a recipient of the Independence Fellowship Foundation in Philadelphia. Work has been shown work at DraftWork, DNA, BAX, AUNTS, Roof Top Series, Danspace Project, Dixon Place and Movement Research, the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival, Philadelphia Dance Boom’s Motion Pictures, Arts and Ideas Festival in New Haven, The London International Film Festival at the Place. As a dancer they have worked with Faye Driscoll, Daria Fain, Jen Rosenblit, Vanessa Anspaugh, Jules Skloot and Yve Laris Cohen in New York and previously with Jerome Bel, White Oak Dance Project, Rennie Harris Pure Movment, and Paule Turner in Philadelphia.

Jeanne Vaccaro (moderator)
Jeanne Vaccaro is completing her Ph.D. in the Department of Performance Studies at NYU. Her dissertation, “Felt Matters: Crafting Transgender and the Politics of the Handmade Body,” mobilizes the term “felt” in both its affective and material senses to animate the everyday feelings and textures of transgender life. Jeanne recently edited a volume of Women & Performance: a journal of feminist theory on “The Transbiological Body.” She teaches in the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies at Hunter College.

Chase Granoff (Coordinator)
Chase Granoff is a Brooklyn based dance artist. He has worked as a dancer with many choreographers including RoseAnne Spradlin, Jeremy Wade, Beth Gill and Daria Faïn. His choreography has been presented throughout New York City and has toured to Limerick, Berlin and Prague. He has collaborated extensively with Jon Moniaci. Chase co-curated Live Sh– at the Chocolate Factory with Chris Peck from 2005 to 2008. He is a member of heart the band with Eleanor Bauer, Gill, Moniaci and Peck. He initiated and curates Lobby Talks at New York Live Arts (formerly Dance Theater Workshop). Chase published and co-edited a publication with Jenn Joy in conjunction with his most recent performance, The Art of Making Dances, at The Kitchen. Other projects include teaching and curating the event ROLLING at Daghdha in Limerick, Ireland, teaching as part of CLASSCLASSCLASS in NYC and teaching a workshop in Montevideo, Uruguay at Espacio Jexe! Most recently Chase was one of the curators of Movement Research 2011 Spring Festival: FESTIVAL!*. Upcoming projects include the premiere of intuition is preceding over my understanding at The Chocolate Factory in collaboration with Abrons Art Center from November 16-19 and on December 3rd he will be a participant in Conversations Without Walls organized by Jenn Joy at Danspace Project.

About New York Live Arts
New York Live Arts strives to create a robust framework in support of the nation’s dance and movement-based artists through new approaches to producing, presenting and educating. In addition to our deep commitment to individual artists at all stages of their careers, we endeavor to create rich, meaningful experiences for our audiences by engaging them in ways that are intimate and thought-provoking. With our audience, we seek to become a place for dance that is vital to the fabric of social and cultural life in New York, the United States and beyond.

Formed in February 2011 by a merger of Dance Theater Workshop and the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, New York Live Arts is a re-imagining of the legacies of these two extraordinary organizations. New York Live Arts is located at 219 West 19th Street in New York City and is led by Bill T. Jones as Executive Artistic Director, Carla Peterson as Artistic Director, and Jean Davidson as Executive Director and CEO.

Funding Support
Lead support for New York Live Arts is provided, in part, by Ford Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Open Society Foundations and the Fund for the City of New York, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and EmcArts Innovation Lab for the Performing Arts, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, The Rockefeller Foundation, Booth Ferris Foundation, the Lambent Foundation Fund of Tides Foundation, Trust for Mutual Understanding, SeaChange Capital Partners, Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, The Shubert Foundation, Mertz Gilmore Foundation, The New York Community Trust, The Howard Gilman Foundation, The Jerome Robbins Foundation, The Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation, The Jerome Foundation, William J. and Dorothy K. O’Neill Foundation and The Scherman Foundation.

The merger between the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company and Dance Theater Workshop to form New York Live Arts was supported, in part, by Ford Foundation, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and EmcArts Innovation Lab for the Performing Arts, The Rockefeller Foundation, Booth Ferris Foundation, SeaChange Capital Partners, The New York Community Trust, Mertz Gilmore Foundation and the William J. and Dorothy K. O’Neill Foundation.