Time: 13 October 2012, starting at 1PMPlace: Guerilla sk8 park near the Morris Canal and I78 overpass, Jersey City, New Jersey Event: Environmental Investigation, a dance performance by the Shua Group
The performance space is not a venue for dance, or music, or theatre. It’s the concrete floor slab of a demolished warehouse that’s been turned into a park by and for skate-boarders and BMX bikers, some of whom stick around for the performance. I’d guess that many of the 40 or so people in the audience have never been back here, perhaps didn’t even know it existed.
This shot is just before the performance began. The guy is not one of the performers, he’s one of the regulars here. We’ll see him again.
The dancers wait ‘off-stage’:
A BMXer rides through.
Though I don’t actually know this, I’m guessing that his performance wasn’t scripted. I’m also guessing that the choreographer and dancers were unfazed by this intrusion that’s not an intrusion because it’s in the environment we all share: together.
There’s a reason this performance, this environmental investigation, is out in the world, not on the protected space of a stage. But you know what the man said: all the world’s a stage. And this non-stage that is a stage has such nice built-in props. And gorgeous sets.
Props to the set designer and stage manager.
Tina (left) and Gregory (right) watching:
I’m getting a flash from one of those old “sword and sandal” flicks, you know where the gladiators salute the rich 1%ers who are watching: “Ave, Imperator, morituri te salutant”—“We, who are about to die, salute you.”
Now I’m in science fiction land, or horror land, or maybe it’s just the Jersey City Council, or the US Congress, or the World Bank. Or just some young women wearing short dresses made of latex gloves sewn to a backing and wearing buckets over their heads:
The finale takes place on a secondary slab below and next to the primary slab:
Notice the chain link fence and the razor wire. That’s guarding the area immediately under the Thruway. Paid for by Homeland Security dollars, that is, your taxes and mine. The thinking seems to be that terrorists who want to blow up the Thruway will be discouraged when they see that fence.
That guy in the first shot? That’s him on the left:
The main performance area is to the right while the secondary area is to the left. I took that shot at 1:49:04 and the dancers bowed at 1:49:27. I’ve got the photograph. Maybe I’ll post it one day.
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Conceived and choreographed by Laura Quattrocchi in collaboration with Joshua Bisset.
Sculpture by Laura Quattrocchi with Milosz Koziej and the County Prep Artist Collective. Performance by Danica Holoviak, Myssi Robinson, Meagan Woods, Molly Galbraith, Heather Warfel, and Laura Quattrocchi.