Philadanco dancers putting on a free virtual show

The performance is called Dancers' Choices, Choreographers' Choices, and it's part of a yearlong project at the University of Pennsylvania's Wolf Humanities Center, exploring the topic of choice.

"How dance can surface kinds of artistic choices but also even political choices," explains doctoral candidate Dixon Lee, "and choices that are related to social issues that are around."

Lead dancers from Philadanco will perform a piece by Dawn Marie Bazemore that pays tribute to Oshun, a deity of the Yoruba people in southwestern Nigeria. Tradition holds that the goddess is the protector of humanity.

"The arts and dance especially have been places where Black history has been transmitted, created and really held in place for Black communities," Lee says.

The performance will be followed by a conversation with 3 renowned dance scholars about choreography and choice.

"There is a whole process of how we arrive at that moment where someone is actually watching a movement happen," Lee says.

"For centuries, we will believe that choices was something that was a privilege," adds Philadanco dancer Joe Gonzalez.

"When you are displaying any type of art," says Philadanco dancer Jameel Hendricks, "you're also showing the world about themselves because we all have this one thing in common. It's called the human experience."

Lee says he hopes audiences will get from the free performance, "a strong sense of the ways that dance connects you to this kind of imaginative, maybe spiritual, but very transformative, other way of being in the world."

University of Pennsylvania, Wolf Humanities Center Presents: Dancers' Choices, Choreographers' Choices | Website

March 3, 5pm
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