Apr 26, 2019
May 26, 2019

La MaMa Moves! Dance Festival 2019

Curated By Nicky Paraiso

a black arrow pointing downward

The stages of La MaMa will bloom again this spring with the exquisite sights and sounds of La MaMa Moves!, our wildly popular annual festival devoted to the very best in dance from New York and around the world. Take advantage of our new flexible 3-show and 5-show subscriptions to feast on a wide variety of options: post-modern, experimental, hip-hop and house, ethnic-fusion, burlesque, swing dance, aerial, hula, and more. La MaMa Moves! is a smorgasbord of passion and artistry of the kind that challenges the audience’s perceptions and reflects La MaMa’s longstanding dedication to performance that transcends politics and unifies cultures.

For our 2019 season, La MaMa Moves! features a thrilling line up of artists, representing the best of New York, as well as the global dance and movement scene. The choreographers of this season’s La MaMa Moves! 2019 are mostly powerful women at different stages of their respective artistic development. They are from places and nations as disparate and diverse as Norway, the USA, China, South Korea. This season’s male choreographers are from Italy, Canada and the USA. They have all made their work on the physical body corresponding and connecting with their passionate awareness of the current political and social world they all live in and inhabit. Indeed, to use choreographer Mia Habib’s dictum, they have re-identified and reclaimed dance as a “physical poem of protest.”


April 26 - April 28 in The Downstairs

performer dancing in multi colored stage

Choreography by Marco Valerio Amico & Rhuena Bracci

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Italy’s renowned Gruppo Nanou brings a unique and spiritual approach to Miles Davis’s albums, Birth of the Cool (1949), Kind of Blue (1959), and Bitches Brew (1969). The trumpet is removed from the melodies; shifting and silencing Davis’s “voice,” in order to isolate and examine the work’s thrillingly elegant choreographic language, flights of improvisation, and composition methodology.


May 3 - May 5 in The Downstairs

a group of shirtless people

Choreographed by Mia Habib

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Brilliant Norwegian choreographer Mia Habib’s deeply insightful ALL – a physical poem of protest takes aim at the physical mass of the human body and its power, in a thoughtful and emotional analysis of the simplest actions: running, walking…. But it’s more than that. ALL is a real-time negotiation between strangers, taking the audience on a journey, inviting us to truly inhabit the many spaces we all occupy.


May 3 - May 5 in The Ellen Stewart Theatre

group of performers jogging

Directed by Colleen Thomas
Music by Robert Boston

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What are the limits – or possibilities – of a sense of belonging amid rising fear and tension in an unsteady world? In her newest work, internationally acclaimed choreographer Colleen Thomas delves into the embodied experience of self, perception and connection in a climate of heightened political and social unrest. With a cast of dancers from Poland, Ukraine, Belarus and the U.S., but the sun came up and we were here asks if the expression of our individual essence, intuition and power can be the antidote to division in a fractured world.


May 9 & May 10 in The Ellen Stewart Theatre

black background with a womans face and a mask are visible

Concept Yin Mei
Choreography by Yin Mei

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Yin Mei Dance brings this inspired new take on The Peony Pavilion, one of the most revered plays in Chinese literature. A surreal and epic love story, set amidst the violence of the Chinese Cultural Revolution, Peony Dreams: On the Other Side of Sleep follows a young dancer who is compelled on a journey across time and space, fiction and reality, life and death. Don’t miss this stunning, boundary-defying new work of dance-theater; an insightful look at the liminal space between reality of our personal histories and our memories of them.


May 11 & May 12 in The Ellen Stewart Theatre

dancers in front of large white words


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Described as a “maverick gadfly who is aggressively iconoclastic and a Very Naughty Boy who scoffs at tradition….”, choreographer Hari Krishnan presents an unmissable evening of high energy dance and complex choreography with a powerful queer, socio-political subtext in a mixed bill of four subversive works, transgressing the boundaries of culture, race, gender and sexuality.


May 16 - May 19 in the Ellen Stewart Theatre

black and white photo of Bobbi Jene Smith

Directed by Bobbi Jene Smith

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Lost Mountain draws inspiration from the catastrophic and sublime machinations of geological forces to create an abstract and emotionally visceral narrative. A series of vignettes with live music brings together twelve remarkable artists from around the world including former Batashava and Punch Drunk performers.


May 18 & May 19 in The Ellen Stewart Theatre

two dancers in a white room, one is on the floor one is on a chair

Choreographed by Dan Safer | Co-Created by Ae Andreas

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Dan Safer, a downtown maverick and the Artistic Director of Witness Relocation, returns to the stage, in this original work, a duet co-created and performed with leading Witness Relocation company member, Ae Andreas. The piece, titled after a David Bowie lyric, is a delightful / invigorating / thrilling preponderance on the way things go, or could go, in any number of directions. The viewer is left unsure which one is right. It’s about things that happen in liminal spaces. It’s about ASMR recordings. And ultimately, is about trying to be happy when everything has gone to hell.


May 18 & May 19

group of people sitting around a table. the people on the right are sitting in front of microphones

La MaMa in partnership with Movement Research

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Secret Journey: Stop Calling Them Dangerous #2 returns to La MaMa Moves! Dance Festival. A Panel Symposium with long-table discussions over two days. The Panel Symposium includes conversations between Yoshiko Chuma (New York/Berlin/Japan), Adham Hafez (NYC/Berlin/Cairo) and dance artists from around the world. Hosted by Movement Research, Secret Journey: Stop Calling Them Dangerous #2 includes discussions that examine stories about oppression, marginalization, prejudice and profiling.


May 23 & May 24 in The Ellen Stewart Theatre

performers in shadow holding each other in front of a white background

By Jesca Prudencio & Ping Chong + Co.

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Calling: a dance with faith is a documentary dance theater piece exploring the lives of two Muslim women as they wrestle with their call to dance and their call to faith. Their religious and artistic journeys intersect, as both Muslims and dancers, in this rich and perceptive performance of movement and storytelling. Expanding upon Ping Chong + Company’s traditional interview-based theater process of talking with local individuals, who are not performers, about questions of culture, identity and belonging.


May 25 & May 26 in The Ellen Stewart Theatre

woman dancing on stage covered in small pieces of paper for mirror

Choreographed, Directed & Performed by Sin Cha Hong

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In this quietly dazzling new work, Sin Cha Hong asks the audience to contemplate their own reflection and ask: Who am I? One of Korea´s most influential contemporary performing artists, Hong is a dancer, choreographer, and vocalist whose vivid avant-garde vision has “the ability to combine the Minimalist aesthetic of American experimental dance with the concentration found in Asian theater.” –The New York Times

The 14th Season of the La MaMa Moves! Dance Festival has been made possible with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, with special thanks to City Council Speaker, Corey Johnson; New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; Ford Foundation; Howard Gilman Foundation; Mertz Gilmore Foundation; The Harkness Foundation for Dance; The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; The Jerome Robbins Foundation; The Shubert Foundation and The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust.

La MaMa Moves! Dance Festival


La MaMa Moves! Dance Festival continues to support La MaMa’s commitment to presenting diverse performance styles that challenge audience’s perception of dance by featuring performance/installations, experimental film screenings & public symposiums which address dance artists’ engagement with the current political climate, as well as honoring diasporic histories and legacy, ancestral inspirations and inter-generational dialogue.

Special Event