upcoming grant deadline: 05/15/2018

upcoming grant deadline: 05/15/2018

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Vernacular Motions

In partnership with the Community Education Center (CEC), Leeway presents an eclectic dance performance by a selection of grantees, featuring tap, modern, West African, and classical Indian dance.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Community Education Center
3500 Lancaster Ave., Philadelphia

The Philadelphia-based Leeway Foundation supports women and transgender artists who create social change through their artwork. Vernacular Motions features performances by four dancers who have received grants from the Leeway Foundation.

The performances are (in alphabetical order):

“The performance is named Vernacular Motions because each of these dancers is taking a traditional practice and transforming it with their own particular dialect of movements and concepts” says Leeway Foundation Executive Director, Denise Brown. “We’re excited to be presenting a program the reflects both the diversity and uniqueness of Leeway’s grantees.”


"Denzel Prelude" by Niv Acosta

"Dezel Prelude" is a piece that sprung out of niv’s research of glory: the glorified and glorious. Through this project niv instigates ways we all can feel glorious and ways we can feel envious of glory. In this society when someone around us is glorified that inherently means someone else is not. “My experience with glory has been scarcely my own glory but that of someone else’s, someone more ‘“fortunate’” than me” says niv Acosta. “As a queer/trans person of color, I have chosen to perform privileges that I could never have in my lifetime through ‘queering’ what I deem to be glory. I am also interested in proselytizing as a didactic structure. I intend to queer that structure and how it informs glory or glorification.” Source material that has inspired this process so far includes: Glory, the film with Denzel Washington, the song "Cruficied" by Army of Lovers, and Sunday morning proselytizing in a public park.

"Presentation" by Amma Young

Presentation highlights African American History combining West African, Afro-Cuban and modern dance. The performance features costumes Amma designed for Kulu Mele, historical reenactments at the African American Museum of Philadelphia, and liturgical costumes for the New Covenant Church of Philadelphia Adowaa Praise Dance and Drum Ministry.

"public." by iele paloumpis

"public." is a solo performance that explores various commonalities: deficiency, death, and the passing of time. Always a work in progress, movement cyclically grows and decays, grows and decays. It is predictable, random, familiar, and everywhere. In 'public.' we are all implicated.

"Then & Now" by Jaye Allison/JADA Dance Ensemble

"Then and Now" is a compilation of an excerpt of the Virtual Quilt mentoring project with the 2nd Generation Silver Belles. The piece is tap choreography with traditional Silver Belles’ style, accompanied by video projection.

"Uurja" by Viji Rao/Three Aksha Dance Ensemble

Classical Bharatanatyam trained dancers explore the depth and scope of rich dance theory and movement through the spectrum of universal human emotions. This production assures to transport the connoisseur to enthralled worlds of movement and mysticism with the powerful flow of movement in the ancient Indian classical dance form Bharatanatyam. The tradition, sacrosanct rituals, and celestial revolution these are unveiled and interpreted in exhilarating dance. The piece invites the audience to witness the transformation from theater to temple, from dancer to divinity.

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Art and Change Grant

The Art and Change Grant provides project-based grants of up to $2,500 to women and trans* artists and cultural producers in Greater Philadelphia to fund art for social change projects. [read more]

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