This Week in New York Insider's Guide to Arts & Culture in New York City Since 2001



After delighting audiences at BAM, John Jasperse’s CANYON will celebrate the thrill of the dance at Abrons Arts Center (photo by Tony Orrico)

Abrons Arts Center, Henry Street Settlement
466 Grand St. at Pitt St.
January 5-15, Show & Tell free, other performances $15

No, it’s not yet another reality show. “American Realness” is an eleven-day live performance festival that offers fans of contemporary dance, music, and theater an opportunity to catch productions they might have missed as well as the chance to see works in progress scheduled to debut later this year. Held at Abrons Arts Center in conjunction with the Association of Performing Arts Presenter’s Conference, “American Realness” features second looks at such 2011 works as John Jasperse’s Canyon, which celebrates the thrill of the dance while ostensibly being about nothing; Wally Cardona and Jennifer Lacey’s Tool Is Loot, the result of a yearlong investigation into collaboration; Jack Ferver and Michelle Mola’s Me, Michelle, about ego and power in the form of Cleopatra; and Eleanor Bauer’s (Big Girls Do Big Things), a solo in which Bauer goes through a series of metamorphoses. The festival also includes the New York premiere of Laura Arrington’s Hot Wings, which examines feminine identity; the U.S. premiere of Daniel Linehan’s Montage for Three, in which two dancers re-create images from found photographs; Trajal Harrell’s Antigone Jr., the next stage of his “Twenty Looks or Paris Is Burning at the Judson Church”; and the pairing of Ishmael Houston-Jones’s mean Cait: a fairytale in progress and Yvonne Meier’s Mad Heidi. The free “Show & Tell” section (advance RSVP required) includes such conversations as “Why a dramaturge?” with Reggie Wilson and Susan Manning and “Surfacing & Song-Based Performance” with Holcombe Waller, Cynthia Hopkins, and Miguel Gutierrez in addition to sneak peeks at such works in progress as Big Dance Theater’s Ich, KürbisGeist, Luciana Achugar’s FEELingpleasuresatisfactioncelebrationholyFORM, and Keith Hennessy’s Turbulence (a dance about the economy).

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