'own, Owned'

08/24/11 through 08/28/11 | 40 min.

Theater for the New City

155 First Avenue Map



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"own, Owned" (world premiere) choreographed by Jesse Phillips-Fein. (DANCE) Cino Theater - Wednesday, August 24 at 9:00PM; Thursday, August 25 at 7:00PM; Friday, August 26 at 7:00PM; Saturday, August 27 at 5:00PM; Sunday, August 28 at 5:00PM. Running Time: 40 minutes | Tickets: $15 -

Inspired by the uninspired, "own, Owned" reflects on how pleasure is constructed and controlled in our post-Hope political landscape. Focusing on small daily acts of pleasurable choices, the piece engages with the unrecognized creative possibility in eating, dressing/primping the self, sex, and modes of entertainment, as well as how these acts become substitutes for an absent collective political power. At the heart of the piece is anxiety about, but craving for desire--our longings for more meaningful ownership of the self. The intention of the piece is to question the significance of where our libidos are focused. It challenges our reliance on these small daily choices to blot out the reality of dehumanized work through empty play but it does not choose sides. Instead, it operates from a "both/and" perspective. It heralds the daily acts of pleasure where we find creative potential in what we often take as banal and repetitive. Exposing that "business does not have to continue as usual," the possible freedom in these acts attempts to acquire a political dimension, but unsuccessfully. In this piece, failure is guaranteed. As a result, it simultaneously denigrates these "mini-choices" as substitutes and distractions from more genuine power. It mourns the way our pleasures are hijacked, packaged and sold back to us. In this process, the piece embraces a troubling of our beliefs about hope and hopelessness in our current global situation. Jesse Phillips-Fein is a dancer, choreographer, dance educator and producer of multi-genre shows. She grew up in Brooklyn NY, where she studied dance at the Brooklyn Arts Exchange and The Dalton School in Manhattan. She earned a B.A. in Dance & Cultural Anthropology from Smith College and a Diploma in Dance Studies from the Laban Centre in London. Her work has been presented at BRICstudio, BAX/Brooklyn Arts Exchange, Chashama, Connelly Theater, DNA/Dance New Amsterdam, Dixon Place, HERE Arts Center, GreenSpace, Movement Research at Judson Church, Williamsburg Arts Nexus, and White Wave. In addition, she has performed with Shannon Hummel/CORA Dance, Cassie Mey, Sarah Sibley, EmmaGrace Skove-Epes, and Layard Thompson, and collaborated with Adam Matta, Box By Three Dance Co., Shana Bloomstein/State Eighteen on Women's Works in Central Maine. She is a co-founder of White Folks Soul: By Any Dance Necessary, using movement and language to unpack white privilege, and Square One Collective, creating performance meditations in unusual spaces. She received the Outer/Space rehearsal space grant from Dance Theater Workshop in 2008 and was the 2007 Poretsky Artist-in-Residence at the Havurah Summer Institute. She is a past recipient of the Individual Artist grant recipient from the Brooklyn Arts Council in 2005 and was awarded the Community Arts Regrant in 2005 and 2006 for her projects "Sea Stories," an inter-generational project about migration with Sheepshead Bay residents of different backgrounds, and "Root & Branch," an exploration of identity with Arab and Jewish teenagers. She has also received funding from the Puffin Foundation, and a space grant from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. She has taught dance to all ages, pre-school to senior citizens and currently teaches Middle and High School Dance at the Brooklyn Friends School.

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