Yvonne Rainer

Hellzapoppin’: What about the bees?

New York Live Arts Theater
October 5-8, 2022, 7:30pm
Added performance Saturday the 8th, 3:00pm
Runtime: 80 Minutes with intermission
Presented in partnership with Performa
A Stay Late Discussion with Bill T. Jones on October 6th
Tickets start at $15/40

World Premiere Commission
HELLZAPOPPIN’: What about the bees? by American luminary Yvonne Rainer is a riveting work for nine performers that reflects on America’s ongoing reckoning with systemic racism. In the vein of Rainer’s previous performances, this new the piece juxtaposes text, dance and excerpts from the two classic films—HELLZAPOPPIN’, a 1941 Hollywood musical, and Zero for Conduct, 1933, by French auteur Jean Vigo—as backdrop and inspiration for some of her choreography.

For HELLZAPOPPIN’, Rainer expands on Dance Rant, her infamous lecture-performance in which a fictional Apollo Musagetes, the Greek sun god and leader of the muses, comes to Earth, and, while getting acquainted with the very latest in current affairs, completely loses faith in the human species. In a recorded voiceover, the narrator ruminates on the American society’s rampant racial injustices.

Yvonne Rainer, at 87, announced that HELLZAPOPPIN’: What about the bees? would be her “last dance.” It is the culmination of over sixty years of choreography, film, writing, and teaching that form an iconic body of work which has immeasurably influenced generations of artists in the U.S. and internationally.

Emily Coates
Brittany Bailey
Brittany Engel-Adams
Patricia Hoffbauer
Vincent McCloskey
Emmanuèle Phuon
David Thomson
Timothy Ward
Kathleen Chalfant

Co-commissioned by PERFORMA, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, and Staatliche Kunsthalle Baden-Baden. Produced and presented by Performa with New York Live Arts. Generous support is provided by Sarah Arison and the PERFORMA Commissioning Fund.