Jessica Lang Dance Company Showcases Collaborative Approach at Pocantico

  • Us/we performed by Jessica Lang Dance company at its November 2018 world premiere in Philadelphia, with imagery by artist José Parlá. (Photo by Vikki Sloviter.)
  • Members of Jessica Lang Dance perform excerpts from us/we at The Pocantico Center. (Photo by Frederick Charles.)
  • Members of Jessica Lang Dance performing excerpts from us/we at The Pocantico Center. (Photo by Frederick Charles.)
  • Members of Jessica Lang Dance performing excerpts from us/we. (Photo by Frederick Charles.)
  • Members of Jessica Lang Dance perform excerpts from us/we at The Pocantico Center. (Photo by Frederick Charles.)
  • Members of Jessica Lang Dance perform an excerpt from Tesseracts of Time. (Photo by Frederick Charles.)
  • Members of Jessica Lang Dance perform This Thing called Love at The Pocantico Center. (Photo by Frederick Charles.)
  • Members of Jessica Lang Dance perform This Thing called Love at The Pocantico Center. (Photo by Frederick Charles.)

Company members from Jessica Lang Dance participated in a week-long residency at The Pocantico Center in October, their second visit to the estate this year after an outdoor public performance this summer. A major focus of their 2018 residency was to continue preparing a brand new work, us/we, which draws inspiration from the imagery of multidisciplinary artist José Parlá, whose paintings explore graffiti and the layered textures of the urban landscape.

Choreographer and artistic director Jessica Lang frequently engages in cross-disciplinary collaborations. In 2015, she spent a residency at Pocantico with her company to develop the work Tesseracts of Time. Exploring the connection between architecture and dance, the final staged work features dancers moving through an architectonic space designed by Columbia professor and architect Steven Holl. 

This summer, audiences at Pocantico were treated to an early preview of us/we during an evening of contemporary dance. On the outdoor stage, this performance did not include Parlá’s visuals as backdrops, but the excerpt still incorporated Lang’s collaborative approach: Costume designer Moriah Black created the dancers’ costumes out of a patchwork of reused fabric that Parlá used to clean up after painting and the music featured found-sound recordings made by Lang and Parlá during their journeys through the boroughs of New York City. The August 15 program also included excerpts from Tesseracts of Time and This Thing Called Love, a new work that celebrates the vocalist Tony Bennett and is performed to a montage of his recordings from the Great American Songbook.

Information on the upcoming season of Pocantico performances can be found at www.rbf.org/events.

More from Summer 2018 at The Pocantico Center:

June 6: Ensemble Connect
June 11: American Ballet Theatre Studio Company
July 10: Guitarist Lage Lund and The Jazz Gallery
August 15: Jessica Lang Dance

About Jessica Lang Dance:

Jessica Lang Dance is a New York City-based dance company dedicated to creating and performing the work of choreographer and artistic director Jessica Lang. Since 1999, Lang has created more than 100 works on companies worldwide including The National Ballet of Japan, Joffrey Ballet, and American Ballet Theatre. Lang seamlessly incorporates striking visual elements and transforms classical ballet language into artfully crafted engaging contemporary works. Her company has been presented at venues such as BAM, Jacobs Pillow, the Kennedy Center, the Joyce Theater, and The Pocantico Center. Learn more at http://www.jessicalangdance.com/