French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) presents
Artist Focus: Faustin Linyekula
Banataba [new work]
Co-presented with The Metropolitan Museum of Art
In Search of Dinozord (Sur les traces de Dinozord)
Co-presented with NYU Skirball
Festival of Dreams
Co-commissioned and co-presented with Dancing in the Streets and 651 ARTS, in partnership with BRIC, University Settlement, the Soul of Brooklyn Festival,
and The Third Avenue BID
Part of BRIDGING: An International Dialogue on Diversity and Inclusion in the Arts,
an initiative co-developed and supported by the Edmond de Rothschild Foundations
New York, NY, August 16, 2017— As part of the 2017 edition of its celebrated Crossing the Line Festival, the French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF), New York’s premiere French cultural center, is thrilled to join partners The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYU Skirball, Dancing in the Streets, and 651 Arts to present a special focus on Congolese dancer and choreographer Faustin Linyekula.
An incredible artist with a “live-wire intensity” (The New York Times) Faustin Linyekula’s riveting work often addresses themes of memory, forgetting, and dreams. With his country’s history as a catalyst, he considers the impact that decades of war, trauma, and economic uncertainty have on people’s lives.
Following acclaimed performances at the Crossing the Line Festival in 2010, 2011, and 2012, including the Bessie Award-winning more more more… future, Linyekula returns to the festival with three works that reflect the scope of his mission, from a collaborative community project to compelling dance theater. The program includes the World Premieres of Banataba [new work] at The Metropolitan Museum of Art; Festival of Dreams, presented on the Roberto Clemente Plaza in the South Bronx and at the Weeksville Heritage Center as part of the Soul of Brooklyn Festival; and the US Premiere of In Search of Dinozord (Sur les traces de Dinozord) at the NYU Skirball.
Also as part of Crossing the Line, Faustin Linyekula will join Ralph Lemon for a post-performance conversation with choreographer Nora Chipaumire following her September 15 performance of #PUNK in FIAF’s Tinker Auditorium.
This special program is supported in part by the Edmond de Rothschild Foundations as part of BRIDGING: An International Dialogue on Diversity and Inclusion in the Arts.
“Scavenging through the ruins of my country in search of clues: a poem by Rimbaud, Banyua rituals my grandmother took me through, Ndombolo dance steps from a music video by Papa Wemba, Latin classes… Bundling together whatever comes my way to build a temporary shelter.”
“[Faustin] Linyekula is quite possibly the most important artist working on the African continent today.”—Frieze
Artist Focus: Faustin Linyekula
Part of BRIDGING: An International Dialogue on Diversity and Inclusion in the Arts, an initiative co-developed and supported by the Edmond de Rothschild Foundations
Banataba [new work]
Co-presented with The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Saturday, September 9 at 2pm & 7pm, Sunday, September 10 at 12pm & 3:30pm
Gallery 534, Vélez Blanco Patio, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 Fifth Avenue
(at 82nd Street)
Tickets from $65
A Crossing the Line 2017 and MetLiveArts Commission
This site-specific work, commissioned and performed in The Met’s 16th Century Spanish Courtyard, the Vélez Blanco Patio, takes its starting point from The Met’s collection of art from the Kingdom of Kongo. Shifting political landscapes and the tumultuous history of the DR Congo also serve as muses for these insightful and provocative artists.
Faustin Linyekula will be accompanied by South African dancer Moya Michael.
Faustin Linyekula/Studios Kabako: In Search of Dinozord (Sur les traces de Dinozord)
Co-presented with NYU Skirball
Friday, September 22 and Saturday, September 23, at 7:30pm
Post-performance conversation on September 22 with Faustin Linyekula and NYU Faculty
NYU Skirball, 566 LaGuardia Place, between West 3rd and West 4th Streets
In French with English supertitles
Scored with fragments of Mozart’s Requiem, metronomic taps on a typewriter, and live vocals by rising opera star Serge Kakudji, In Search of Dinozord is a poetic, political fairy tale that begins, like all fairytales, with “once upon a time…”
From there, Faustin Linyekula and a small group of dancers and actors embark on a deeply personal journey as they search for what is left of their former dreams. In spoken word and solo dances, they delve into the wrenching history of the Congo, recount stories from their childhoods, and mourn the loss of a friend. In the process, they hope to fashion a new kind of myth that is a truer reflection of their lives.
Festival of Dreams
Co-commissioned and co-presented with Dancing in the Streets and 651 ARTS, in partnership with BRIC, University Settlement, the Soul of Brooklyn Festival, and The Third Avenue BID
Saturday, September 23 at 3pm
Roberto Clemente Plaza, The Hub, Third Avenue (between 148th and 149th Streets), South Bronx
Sunday, September 24 at 3pm
Weeksville Heritage Center, 158 Buffalo Ave, between St. Marks Avenue and Bergen Street, Brooklyn
Free and open to the public
A Crossing the Line 2017 and Dancing in the Streets Co-Commission
Assisted by South African dancer Moya Michael, Faustin Linyekula teams up with 20 dancers from It’s Showtime NYC!— to create a series of performative dialogues in Brooklyn and the Bronx. During a two-week residency, he will work with each member of It’s Showtime NYC!—a program of Dancing in the Streets that supports the development of street and subway dancers in New York City—exploring movement, memories, and hopes in the process of shaping meaningful stories.
The project will culminate in two free events in which the performers share their dreams for a better future through street dance, music, storytelling, and community dialogue. The work celebrates the small, personal details that define who we are, and that connect us all as human beings.
NORA CHIPAUMIRE: #PUNK (US Premiere, a Crossing the Line 2017 Commission)
Thursday, September 14 and Friday, September 15 at 7:30pm
Post-performance conversation on Friday, September 15 with Nora Chipaumire and Faustin Linyekula, moderated by Ralph Lemon
FIAF, Tinker Auditorium, 55 East 59th Street (between Park & Madison Avenue)
FIAF Members $25; Non-Members $30
Born in Mutare, Zimbabwe and based in NYC, Nora Chipaumire uses her work to challenge and embrace stereotypes of the African black body. She seeks to question how status and power are experienced and presented, working within modes of portraiture, self-portraiture, and biography. She was awarded a 2015 Doris Duke Artist award and is a three-time BESSIE award winner. Chipaumire’s most recent performance work, portrait of myself as my -f-a-t-h-e-r (2015) has toured in Africa, Europe, and the US, and her debut film, Afro Promo #1 King Lady (2016, commissioned by Montclair State University) was featured in the 2017 New York African Film Festival. She last participated in Crossing the Line Festival in 2013 with rite riot.
Iconoclastic choreographer Nora Chipaumire stages a raw concert inspired by 1970s independent music, Americana, and her own formative years in Zimbabwe in the 70–90’s. Riffing on an iconic Patti Smith lyric and a punk perspective on the future, #PUNK paints a riotous sonic and visual landscape with voice, dance, installation, and performance. #PUNK is the first part of a triptych titled #PUNK 100% POP*NIGGA, a live performance album that confronts and celebrates three sonic ideologies: punk, pop, and rumba, explored through the radical artists Patti Smith, Grace Jones, and Rit Nzele.
Commissioned by Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts with the support of Miami Light Project, ICA Live Art Festival (Cape Town), Crossing the Line Festival/French Institute Alliance Française and company nora chipaumire.
About Faustin Linyekula
Dancer and choreographer Faustin Linyekula lives and works in Kisangani, in the northeast of the Democratic Republic of Congo, formerly Zaire, formerly Belgian Congo, formerly the independent state of Congo…
After studying literature and theater in Kisangani, Faustin moved to Nairobi in 1993. Together with choreographers Opiyo Okach and Afrah Tenambergen he founded the Gàara company, Kenya’s first contemporary dance company, in 1997. Back in Congo in June 2001, Linyekula created the Kinshasa-based Studios Kabako, a space dedicated to dance and visual theater, providing training programs and supporting research and artistic creation. In 2007, Studios Kabako moved to Kisangani and embraced new artistic genres, including music, film, and video.
In his work, Faustin addresses memory, forgetting, and the suppression of memory: the legacy of decades of war, terror, and fear, the collapse of the economy and its impact on himself, his family, and his friends. Within Studios Kabako, Faustin has created 15 works that have toured worldwide in Europe, Africa, Australia, Canada, and North America. Other collaborations include Sans-titre (2009), a duet with German choreographer Raimund Hoghe; La Création du monde 1923–2012, a piece for 25 dancers commissioned by the Ballet de Lorraine in Nancy, and a solo for the Portugal National Ballet Company (CMB) in 2016. That same year, Faustin Linyekula was named associated artist of the city of Lisbon.
Faustin teaches regularly in Africa, Europe (Impulstanz, Vienna; PARTS, Brussels; CNDC Angers), and the United States (University of Florida, Gainesville; University of Arizona, Tempe; University of the Arts, Philadelphia).
In 2007, he received the Principal Award of the Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development. In 2014, Faustin Linyekula and the Studios Kabako were awarded the First Prize of the CurryStone Foundation for their work developed in Kisangani.
In addition to fostering the work of young Congolese artists in the performing arts, music, and video, Studios Kabako works with communities of the Lubunga district on the south bank of the Congo River to draw attention to the need for clean drinking water. In 2018, Studios Kabako will open a neighborhood cultural center in Lubunga along with a pilot water treatment program.
About Crossing the Line Festival 2017
“Adventurous programming that makes you think as much about your place in the world as about art itself.”
—The New York Times
Crossing the Line Festival is an international arts festival for New York City produced by the French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) in partnership with leading cultural institutions. The festival is co-curated by Lili Chopra, FIAF’s Executive Vice President and Artistic Director; Simon Dove, Executive and Artistic Director of Dancing in the Streets; and Gideon Lester, Artistic Director for Theater and Dance at the Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College.
France has a long history of supporting national and international cultural practices, welcoming and nurturing new ideas and influential perspectives from around the world. FIAF, as the leading French cultural institution in the US, critically maintains that practice through the Crossing the Line Festival, presenting leading-edge artists from France and the US alongside their peers from around the world.
Since its inauguration in 2007, Crossing the Line Festival has cultivated an increasingly large and diverse following, and received numerous accolades in the press including “Best of” in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The New Yorker, Time Out New York, Artforum, and Frieze. Festival performances have earned multiple Obie and Bessie awards. crossingtheline.org
About BRIDGING: An International Dialogue on Diversity and Inclusion in the Arts
The Edmond de Rothschild Foundations and the French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) have partnered to present BRIDGING: An International Dialogue on Diversity and Inclusion in the Arts, which was launched as part of Crossing the Line 2016. BRIDGING offers international perspectives to evaluate policies and practices in an effort to move beyond simple acknowledgement of cultural diversity to achieve genuine equality in the arts in our shifting cultural landscape. Works by choreographer Faustin Linyekula and his guest artists will be presented as part of this project, as well as a public conversation.
The French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) is New York’s premiere French cultural and language center. FIAF’s mission is to create and offer New Yorkers innovative and unique programs in education and the arts that explore the evolving diversity and richness of French cultures. FIAF seeks to generate new ideas and promote cross cultural dialogue through partnerships and new platforms of expression. www.fiaf.org
About the Edmond de Rothschild Foundations
The mission of the Edmond de Rothschild Foundations is to promote social empowerment and a collaborative society. It is rooted in a century-long tradition of giving founded on humanism, inclusion and the search for excellence. The Edmond de Rothschild Foundations continue to apply the same principles in the transformation of their philanthropic legacy by identifying innovative solutions and creative partnerships in education, the arts, health and entrepreneurship. www.edrfoundations.org
The critically acclaimed performance series at The Metropolitan Museum of Art commissions and presents contemporary performance through the lens of the Museum’s exhibitions and gallery spaces. MetLiveArts invites artists, performers, curators, and thought leaders to create groundbreaking new work, including live and digital performances as well as site-specific durational performances that have been named some of the most “memorable” and “best of” performances in New York City by The New York Times, The New Yorker, and Broadway World. www.metmuseum.org
About NYU Skirball
NYU Skirball, located in the heart of Greenwich Village, is one of New York City’s major presenters of international work, and has been the premier venue for cultural and performing arts events in lower Manhattan since 2003. The 860-seat state-of-the art theater, led by Director Jay Wegman, provides a home for internationally renowned artists, innovators, and thinkers. NYU Skirball hosts over 300 events annually, from re-inventions of the classics to cutting-edge premieres, in genres ranging from dance, theater, and performance art to comedy, music, and film. www.nyuskirball.org
About Dancing in the Streets
Dancing in the Streets, based in NYC’s South Bronx, develops movement-based projects through long-term initiatives, integrating rigorous inquiry, artistic exploration, deep community engagement, and the nurturing of urban artists. The three main areas of activity: Resident Artists – based in residential communities in public housing in the South Bronx, nurturing individual creativity, and building bridges across generations, communities, and cultures. The Incubator – supporting and developing new generations of artists in dance and social practice. It’s Showtime NYC! – celebrates and promotes New York City street culture and provides performance and professional development opportunities to street and subway dancers to develop legitimate career options in the arts. The program nurtures new generations of urban dance artists, and advocates the value, and importance of Hip Hop culture in NYC, nationally and internationally. www.dancinginthestreets.org
About 651 ARTS
Since 1988, 651 ARTS has been committed to developing, producing, and presenting performance and cultural programming rooted in the African Diaspora, with a primary focus on contemporary performing arts. 651 ARTS serves the cultural life of New York City, with a particular focus on Brooklyn, one of America’s most culturally diverse communities. Its mission is to deepen awareness of and appreciation for contemporary performing arts and culture of the African Diaspora, and to provide professional and creative opportunities for performing artists of African descent. www.651arts.org
BRIC is the leading presenter of free cultural programming in Brooklyn, and one of the largest in New York City. They present and incubate work by artists and media-makers who reflect the diversity that surrounds us. Their main venue, BRIC House, offers a public media center, a major contemporary art exhibition space, two performance spaces, a glass-walled TV studio, and artist work spaces. Some of BRIC’s most acclaimed programs, which reach hundreds of thousands of people each year, include the BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival in Prospect Park; several path-breaking public access media initiatives, including BRIC TV; and a renowned contemporary art exhibition series. BRIC also offers education and other vital programs at BRIC House and throughout Brooklyn. In addition to making cultural programming genuinely accessible, BRIC is dedicated to providing substantial support to artists and media makers in their efforts to develop work and reach new audiences. www.bricartsmedia.org
About the Soul of Brooklyn Festival
MoCADA’s Soul of Brooklyn Festival is a borough-wide celebration of the diverse arts and cultures of Brooklyn’s African Diaspora, that takes place annually in August. This weeklong series of events promotes African Diasporan arts and culture while supporting partnerships between local arts organizations and Black businesses. The festival includes over 20 performances, street fairs, educational events, workshops, tastings, film screenings, and shopping opportunities. www.mocada.org
Crossing the Line 2017 is made possible with generous leadership support from Air France and Delta Air Lines, the official airlines of FIAF; The Edmond de Rothschild Foundations; The Florence Gould Foundation; The Hermès Foundation (Fondation d’entreprise Hermès) within the framework of the New Settings program; and JCDecaux; and with generous major support from Cultural Services of the French Embassy; Enoch Foundation; FACE; Howard Gilman Foundation; National Endowment for the Arts; New England Foundation for the Arts; NYC Department of Cultural Affairs; NYSCA; New York State Council on the Arts; Pommery; Perrier; and Performing Arts Fund NL.
Our Producer’s Circle: Sarah Arison, Michel G. Bernard, Ron Guttman, Isabelle Kowal, Didier Lestienne & Pierre Rouy-Cartier, Marie Nugent-Head, and Elisabeth Wilmers.
FIAF would like to thank the following for their generous support of Crossing the Line 2017:
British Council; Consulate General of the Netherlands in New York ; Institut Français; King’s Fountain; Omaha Foundation; Robert de Rothschild; and SACD (Société des auteurs et compositeurs dramatiques).
Faustin Linyekula: Banataba [new work]
|When:||Saturday, September 9 at 2pm & 7pm, Sunday, September 10 at 12pm & 3:30pm|
|Where:||Gallery 534, Vélez Blanco Patio,
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 Fifth Avenue (at 82nd Street)
|Admission:||Tickets start at $65|
|Tickets:||crossingtheline.org | metmuseum.org/linyekula | 212 570 3949|
|Information:||crossingtheline.org | metmuseum.org | 212 355 6160|
|Transportation:||Subway: 4, 5,6 to 86th Street;|
|Bus: M1, M2, M3, M4 to 82nd Street; M86, M79 to Fifth Avenue|
Faustin Linyekula: In Search of Dinozord (Sur les traces de Dinozord)
|When:||Friday, September 22 & Saturday, September 23 at 7:30pm|
566 LaGuardia Place, between West 3rd and West 4th Streets
|Tickets:||crossingtheline.org | nyuskirball.org | 212 998 4941|
|Information:||www.crossingtheline.org | nyuskirball.org | 212 355 6160|
|Transportation:||Subway: 6 to Bleecker Street; 4, 5, to 14th Street- Union Square;
A, B, D, and F to West 4th Street–Washington Square; 1 to Christopher Street
Faustin Linyekula: Festival of Dreams
|When:||Saturday, September 23 & Sunday, September 24 at 3pm,|
|Where:||September 23: Roberto Clemente Plaza, The Hub
149th Street and Third Avenue, South Bronx
September 24: Weeksville Heritage Center
158 Buffalo Ave, between St. Marks Avenue and Bergen Street, Brooklyn
|Admission:||Free and open to public|
|Information:||www.crossingtheline.org | 212 355 6160|
Facebook: FIAF / French Institute Alliance Française