Friday, August 3, 2012

Special guests announced for first CollectiveDWNM Open House

Kyle Abraham (photo by Steven Schreiber)
Marjani Forté  (photo by Ian Douglas)

Yes. You got that right: 

Kyle Abraham

Marjani Forté

in conversation with 651 Arts' Shay Wafer

Shay Wafer (photo by Whitney Thomas)

Collective for Dance Writing and New Media's
Executive Committee
Leadership Circle

welcome you to our first  
Open House

 Monday, September 10 (6-8pm)

presented by in partnership with 651 Arts

hosted by Gibney Dance Center 
890 Broadway, 5th Floor, (19th/20th Streets), Manhattan

Curious about CollectiveDWNM? Want to join as a member or participate in our Leadership Circle (internship program)?

This Open House will be a great time to become involved with this important new initiative, open to writers and all media professionals, artists, students, advocates and fans who care passionately about the art of dance and its documentation.


6pm: Refreshments. Membership/internship info/sign-up (Studio 3) 

6:40pm: Conversation with Abraham, Forté and Wafer (Studio 6)

Free admission
Annual membership: $20 (cash only)


Kyle Abraham, professional dancer and choreographer, began his training at the Civic Light Opera Academy and the Creative and Performing Arts High School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He continued his dance studies in New York, receiving a BFA from SUNY Purchase and an MFA from NYU Tisch School of the Arts. Over the past few years, Abraham has received tremendous accolades and awards for his dancing and choreography including a 2010 Bessie Award for Outstanding Performance in Dance for his work in The Radio Show, a 2010 Princess Grace Award for Choreography, a BUILD grant and an individual artist fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts, a Jerome Foundation Travel and Study Grant, and selected in 2009 as one of Dance Magazine’s 25 To Watch.

In 2011, OUT Magazine labeled Abraham as the “best and brightest creative talent to emerge in New York City in the age of Obama” and was most recently awarded The Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award in 2012. 

His choreography has been presented throughout the United States and abroad, most recently at On The Boards, South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center, REDCAT, Philly Live Arts, Portland’s Time Based Arts Festival, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Danspace Project, Dance Theater Workshop, Bates Dance Festival, Harlem Stage, Fall for Dance Festival at New York's City Center, Montreal, Germany, Jordan, Ecuador, Dublin’s Project Arts Center, The Okinawa Prefectural Museum & Art Museum located in Okinawa Japan, The Andy Warhol Museum and The Kelly-Strayhorn Theater in his hometown of Pittsburgh, PA.

As a performer, Abraham has worked with acclaimed modern dance companies including David Dorfman Dance, Burnt Sugar Dance Conduction Continuum, Nathan Trice/Rituals, Mimi Garrard Dance Theater, Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Dance Alloy, The Kevin Wynn Collection and Attack Theatre. In addition to performing and developing new works for his company, Abraham.In.Motion, Abraham also teaches his unique approach to post-modern dance in various schools and studios throughout the United States.

He is currently working on a new pas de deux for himself and acclaimed Bessie Award winning dancer and New York City Principal, Wendy Whelan while still creating new works for his company A/I/M.

For more information please visit:

Marjani Forté is a Los Angeles, CA native and Harlem resident. She graduated with a B.A. in Marketing and Dance from Loyola Marymount University and attended Los Angeles High School for the Arts.  She was a five-year member of Urban Bush Women Dance Compay and has worked with Earl Moseley, Garth Fagan, Blondell Cummings and Nia Love's BSD|dance. She is now co-founder of LOVE|FORT… A COLLECTIVE--a research/process, performance, and teaching geared collective with a commitment to social and politically conscious art making, that connects the human experience through time ( Forté has taught master classes and workshops across the US and beyond including University of Minnesota and TU Dance Center, Florida State University, Hunter CUNY, and the American Dance Festival.  She has presented for New Orleans McKenna Museum, DNA Raw Material, Kelly Strayhorn newMoves Festival in Pittsburg, PA, and DanceNow at Joe's Pub. Forté premiered her solo EGO at Dance Theatre Workshop as a 2010 Fresh Tracks Resident Artist while concluding a choreographic residency and lecture series at Loyola Marymount University. Forté most recently premiered Here… for Danspace PLATFORMS: Parallels Series in March 2012 and EGO for Harlem Stage’s E-Moves April 2012. Forté is a Movement Research Artist-In-Residence 2011-13, a recent BAX Artist in Residence with LOVE|FORT…, and has joined a roster of teaching professionals, as faculty, at Dance New Amsterdam in NYC.  Forté is thrilled to join arms with 651 Arts in the further creative development of Here… Her work stems from being born in and having engaged with culturally rich, vibrant, historic, and politically charged communities. 

Shay Wafer, Executive Director of 651 ARTS, has demonstrated a stalwart dedication to the arts and community development through many years of service to the field. Her passionate vision is balanced with pragmatic experience, as she has held senior level positions at a number of non-profit arts organizations with a focus on African-American programming, community engagement and arts education. In 2007, Shay became the founding Vice President of Programs for the August Wilson Center for African American Culture, a new multi-disciplinary performing arts center and museum in downtown Pittsburgh. Prior to the August Wilson Center, she served for six years as the managing director of Cornerstone Theater Company in Los Angeles, California--her hometown. She also served as the Managing Director of the St. Louis Black Repertory Company and LA Theatreworks. She was a founding partner of Marla Gibb’s Crossroads Arts Academy and Theatre in L.A., as well as the co-founder of Colored Girl Productions. Ms. Wafer has engaged in additional community and volunteer activities throughout her career including serving on the Board of Directors of Theatre Communications Group (TCG) and as a NEFA National Theatre Project Advisor. A graduate of Howard University and Yale School of Drama, prior to working in the arts field she was a pre-school and kindergarten teacher.

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