Year in Review (2011)
DECA 2011 Adventures:
Winter: The winter was all about teaching and getting involved with a variety of communities in and out of NYC. Deca believes that hip-hop is a key tool for allowing urban youth to find their voice as artists. As artist in residence at Cascades High School on the lower east side of Manhattan, we worked with a group of students over the course of 30 sessions to develop hip hop dance theatre skills. We also continued our relationship with the Berkshire Pulse in Housatonic , MA.
The creativity and raw talent of the students at the Pulse continue to inspire us. Jenn traveled to Chattanooga, TN to set a piece at Girls Preparatory School, and Nads was selected to work with Rennie Harris Puremovement on his new show “Heaven” at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia.
By Spring time, the Deca Crew returned to the studio to put together a show for New York City Public School children at Hostos Community College in the Bronx through the organization Community Works. We welcomed back Megan “Megz” Alfonso to the crew and rocked the stage for over 1,500 public school kids.
We also had the opportunity to sign with NYC-based booking agency, Pentacle and we can’t wait to see where this new relationship takes us. Deca Crew member Tae appeared in the March 2011 issue of Dance Spirit Magazine for an article on the six-step.
At the end of the Spring, Deca was happy to find out our show When the Sky Breaks 3D was accepted into the 15th annual New York International Fringe Festival. We had been looking for a way to develop this piece from 20 minutes to an hour, and FringeNYC was the perfect opportunity for that task. In order to expand the piece, we also had to expand the crew including the return of Deca Lighting Designer Erik C Bruce, the addition of DJ Boo, and new Deca dancers, Adaku Utah and Casandra “Defy” Rivera.
To hype the show, Jenn was interviewed on “Talking Dance” with former Deca Crew member Ashani.
The Summer was non-stop. We worked on Sky Breaks for FringeNYC, and were honored with the “Overall Excellence in Dance” award from the festival. The Show was such a success that the crew had a feature in The New Yorker in addition to receiving great reviews on a variety of websites.
We also had an opportunity to speak at The Apple Store on a panel about theatre and technology.
We performed the new version of When the Sky Breaks at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, but got stuck with a rainy day and had to do the “inside” version of Inside/Out.
In addition to Sky Breaks Jenn choreographed, Trouble: A New Rock Musical for the Midtown International Theatre Festival and was nominated for best choreography for that show. We also created an add campaign and video for New Zealand based clothing company Sistahood by Freddy Chur, .
With no break in site, the company’s Fall began with a return to University of the South in Sewanee, TN for two performances and workshops.
As Fall continued, we performed shows at St. Josephs College in Brooklyn, Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts in Hartford, CT, and returned to the Palace of Fine Arts for the San Francisco Hip-Hop Dance Festival and Mount Holyoke College (where Jenn is a “Visiting Artist in Dance” teaching three sections of hip-hop dance to 90 undergrads all Fall semester).
Yep, 2011 was amazing, bring it on 2012!
See you next year!!