Madison Square Park Oval Lawn
Twenty-Fourth St. between Madison & Fifth Aves.
Tuesday - Sunday, August 1-13, free, 10:00 am - 9:00 pm
From August 1 to 13, New York City–based dancer and choreographer Netta Yerushalmy will continue her ambitious Paramodernities series in Madison Square Park, inhabiting Josiah McElheny’s “Prismatic Park” installation. In June at the National Museum of the American Indian, Yerushalmy presented the second and third parts of the series, in which she reinterprets classic works of dance in multidisciplinary programs: Paramodernities #2 / Trauma, Interdiction, and Agency in “The House of Pelvic Truth,” collaborating with dancer Taryn Griggs and art historian Carol Ockman and featuring a video of Martha Graham’s Night Journey ballet (with Graham as Jocasta, Bertram Ross as Oedipus, and Paul Taylor as Tiresias), and Paramodernities #3 / Revelations — The Afterlives of Slavery, exploring Alvin Ailey’s classic work, joined by Stanley Gambucci, Jeremy Jae Neal, Nicholas Leichter, and Duke University professor Thomas DeFrantz. “Paramodernities is a series of dance experiments that I generate through systematically deconstructing landmark modern dance choreographies,” Yerushalmy, who was born in South Carolina and raised there and in Israel, explained in a statement. “Performed alongside contributions by scholars from different fields in the humanities, who situate these iconic works within the larger project of modernity, Paramodernities explores foundational tenants of modern discourse — such as sovereignty, race, feminism, and nihilism — and includes public discussions as integral parts of each installment.”
Sponsored by Danspace Project, Yerushalmy’s “Prismatic Park” residency will begin each day (starting at different times) with Paramodernities #5, examining the movement in Bob Fosse’s Sweet Charity, with Megan Williams, Michael Blake, Hsiao-Jou Tang, J’nae Simmons, and Joyce Edwards. That will be followed in the late afternoon or early evening by an experimental group dance with Emily Rose Cannon, Marc Crousillat, Brittany Engel-Adams, Maddie Schimmel, and Gambucci that focuses on the choreographers Yerushalmy has researched for Paramodernities so far (Vaslav Nijinsky, Merce Cunningham, Graham, and Ailey). “For this track, I am choosing to inhabit the park in a way that is perhaps more attuned to the modernist gestures of Josiah’s sculptures and to the park as architecture than to the organic matter there. I’ll be thinking of the determined shape of the lawn as the container for a layered dance-object filled with traces of legacy, gesture, culture,” she explained. And on August 12 at 6:00, the park will host the panel discussion “How Many Modernities Are There?” with McElheny, DeFrantz, Ockman, David Kishik, Judy Hussie-Taylor, and others. All events are free and first come, first served. “Prismatic Park,” which comprises an open red vaulted-roof pavilion, a reflective green dance floor, and a blue sound wall, continues with concerts by Shelley Hirsch (August 22-27), Matana Roberts (September 5-10), and Limpe Fuchs with poet Patrick Rosal (October 3-8), dance by Jodi Melnick (September 12-17, 19-24), and poetry by Joshua Bennett (August 15-20), Donna Masini (August 29 – September 3), and Mónica de la Torre (September 26 – October 1).