It’s time to face facts: This is raja feather kelly’s world; we’re only living in it. Kelly is an Obie-winning choreographer, director, artistic director of the feath3r theory, and creative associate at Juilliard who has been involved with such productions as Young Jean Lee’s We’re Gonna Die at Second Stage, Electric Lucifer at the Kitchen, A Strange Loop and If Pretty Hurts Ugly Must Be a Muhfucka at Playwrights Horizons, Fireflies at the Atlantic, and Fairview at Soho Rep and TFANA. In December he premiered his solo performance installation Hysteria in the glassed-in lobby at New York Live Arts, for which he is also making the film Wednesday, a queer-fantasia reimagining of Dog Day Afternoon that he offered a sneak peek of at a wild watch party also in December. He will be bringing back Hysteria for encore performances April 8-10.
Kelly is now curating Ars Nova’s Vision Residency program, featuring presentations by four creators: Tuçe Yasak, Tislarm Bouie, L Morgan Lee, and Emily Wells, running March 20 to April 9. “There is no separation between who these people are as artists and who they are as people. Their work is indelible and one of a kind,” kelly said in a statement. The Ars Nova Supra events begin March 20 with Yasak’s virtual installation Light Journals, inspired by poetry by Rumi, followed March 25 by Bouie’s dance film on Black masculinity, THUG; a reading on April 8 of The Women, the working title of a play in progress, led by L Morgan Lee and kelly as Kirsten Childs, Dane Figueroa Edidi, Donnetta Lavinia Grays, Christine Toy Johnson, Bianca Leigh, Carmen LoBue, and Nia Witherspoon explore what it means to be a woman in today’s society; and, on April 9, kelly & Wells’s Artifact, a listening and viewing party previewing their work-in-progress Album and Opera. Tickets to each show are $10; a monthly subscription to Ars Nova’s Supra digital platform is $15. Kelly is one of seven 2020–21 Vision Residents; the others are Starr Busby, nicHi douglas, JJJJJerome Ellis, Jenny Koons, David Mendizábal, and Rona Siddiqui.