in the Afro NOW
REVIVAL: Millennial reMembering
in the Afro NOW
BY AMARA TABOR-SMITH | FALL MAIN STAGE
Co-produced with Stanford Institute for Diversity in the Arts (IDA),
BLACKstage, and Stanford Arts Intensive
ABOUT THE PERFORMANCE
REVIVAL: Millennial reMembering in the Afro NOW, is an Afro Futurist, devised dance theater work, inspired by the founding of the Committee on Black Performing Arts (CBPA), which marks its 50th anniversary this year. Utilizing the stories and characteristics of the Yoruba deities known as Orisha, REVIVAL is a multi-media and multi-site experience exploring the people and events that have catalyzed movements for social change through time. A non-linear narrative, REVIVAL is driven by the core question, what parts of our myths and stories do we choose to recall, remember, and re-invent in order to carry us forward repaired, restored, and revived?
Promotional Artwork by Alexa Burrell
ABOUT THE CHOREOGRAPHER / DIRECTOR / LEAD COLLABORATOR
AMARA TABOR-SMITH is an Oakland based choreographer/performance maker who describes her work as Conjure Art. Her site responsive dance and performance making practice utilizes Yoruba spiritual ritual to address issues of social and environmental justice, race, gender identity, homefullness and belonging in the Afro present.Her work has been presented nationally and internationally. Amara is a 2019 Dance/USA Fellow, 2018 United States Artist Fellow, and has received fellowship awards from A Blade of Grass (2019), The Urban Bush Women Choreographic Center Fellowship (2018), and was a 2016 recipient of the Creative Capital Grant along with long time collaborator Ellen Sebastian Chang. She has been an artist in residence at Instituto Sacatar in Bahia, Brazil, and The Headlands Center for the Arts. Amara is currently an artist-in-residence teaching at Stanford University. www.deepwatersdance.com
Photo by Jean Melesaine
ABOUT THE COLLABORATORS
- SHARON BRIDGFORTH, Co-Writer/Performer
- DANA KAWANO, Costume Designer
- TONY SHAYNE, Lighting Designer
- ALEXA BURRELL, Sound and Video Designer
- DORIEN BLUE, DJ
- ALETA HAYES, Chocolate Heads Choreographer
- MJ’S BRASS BOPPERS BRASS BAND, Performers
SHARON BRIDGFORTH (Co-Writer and Performer), a Doris Duke Performing Artist, is a writer that creates ritual/jazz theatre. A New Dramatists alumnae, Sharon has received support from Whitman Institute, Creative Capital, MAP Fund, and the National Performance Network. Her work has been featured at: New York’s SummerStage Festival; Rites and Reason Theatre’s Black Lavender Experience at Brown University and Links Hall. Sharon has served in residence for: The NoVo Foundation; Thousand Currents; allgo; Brown University; University of Iowa; DePaul University; Northwestern University;Florida State University; and the Urban Bush Women Choreographic Center. Sharon is producer and host of Who Yo People Is, a podcast series that gives space to POC & LGBTQ artists serving our communities through healing/Spiritual and cultural traditions. Publications include love conjure/blues and Lambda Literary Award-winning the bull-jean stories. Sharon is co-editor of Experiments in a Jazz Aesthetic: Art, Activism, Academia, and the Austin Project. Sharon’s River See Theatrical Jazz Performance Installation script is published in Obsidian Literature & Arts in the African Diaspora, Issue 43.1; delta dandi, is published in solo/black/woman: scripts, interviews and essays; and The love conjure/blues Text Installation is in Blacktino Queer Performance.
DANA KAWANO (Costume Designer) is a Ritual Wear Designer, Scenic/Installation and Visual Artist. She is versed in a multitude of artistic mediums. Her focus is to create ‘visual landscapes’ of elaborate wearable and/or scenic art that incorporate textiles, found materials and traditional mediums while integrating cultural/ritual layering to tell the story.
TONY SHAYNE (Lighting Designer) has formerly toured with and served in the roles of PM/TD for ODC, REDCAT, and Rosanna Gamson/Worldwide, and worked at some of California’s best colleges including UCLA, CalArts, Berkeley & UC Davis. His more recent works include helping realize the Mad Max inspired dance experience Fury premiere at August Hall and with Music Academy of the West with the West Coast premiere of Jennifer Higdon’s Cold Mountain. When not working on a new production Tony has the tremendous pleasure of being a Lecturer at Stanford University where he endeavors to promote new and passionate advocates for dance, opera, and performance art. He enjoys teaching Hands-on Technical Theater, Lighting Design, and Producing, as well as working with student designers and technicians.
ALEXA BURRELL (Sound and Video Designer) creates collages composed of narrative film, animation and soundscapes that center the Black femme experience. She is best known for her site-specific video and sound installations in House/Full of Blackwomen, an Oakland based collective addressing the displacement and trafficking of Black women and girls. As a trained musician, her visual work is always informed by the logic of melody and rhythm to produce hypnotic afro-surrealist psycho-somatic experiences. She often compares the micro and macro, the scientific and spiritual, and the historical and mythical, to evoke the complexities of coloniality, gender, time travel and black feminist thought.
My name is DORIEN BLUE (they/them), and I am a multi-medium/multi-sensory artist who uses expression as a way to deeply explore my inner space and feelings. Through my explorations, I bridge connections between the spaces outside of me and myself. I am guided and guide other people to experience the ways the inner world deeply mirrors the outer world – providing a deeper, intimate engagement with large themes of gender, race, sexuality, class, power, spirituality, and mental health. I believe the smallest unit is a reflection of the entire system, so through falling into myself I fall into everything else. Through creating myself, I create the world around me. Through my healing, I help others do the same. The vessels for my work include dance, visual art (spray paint and ink), writing, and music. I honor the land and peoples where I currently live – occupied Ohlone-Muwekma territory (Oakland, CA), my ancestors and God for supporting me in being here.
ALETA HAYES (Chocolate Heads Artistic Director) is a singer, dancer, actor, choreographer and lecturer in Contemporary Dance and Performance in the Department of Theater and Performance Studies at Stanford University. She is the Artistic Director of Choloate Heads Movement Band which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. An alumna of Stanford in the Drama Department, Aleta returned to the university as a Ford Foundation Artist Fellow in 2005. Her teaching includes pedagogically innovative classes combining embodied research, theory, practice and performance, channeled through the lens of dance and movement. In 2009 Hayes founded a cross-genre and dance- driven performance troupe including dancers, musicians, visual and spoken word artists, called the Chocolate Heads Movement Band which has performed at Stanford TedX, Bing Concert Hall and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and others.
MJ’S BRASS BOPPERS BRASS BAND (Performers). Attending a MJ’s Brass Boppers show is the next best thing to following a brass band down New Orleans’ famed Claiborne Ave. The swinging and singing brass-line is the Bay Area’s only New Orleans-style brass band whose founding members were born and raised in New Orleans itself.
This group’s sound has been meticulously formed over years of practicing and experimenting together from concert halls to street corners, fusing classic cultural New Orleans performance with funk, jazz, modern pop, and a second line twist.
Since 2008, the tight knit musicians have written, practiced, and performed together at festivals, community events, nightclubs, and street corners around the Bay Area and beyond. They’ve opened for a variety of acts, including George Clinton & Funkadelic, The O’Jays, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Ave, Funky Meters, George Porter Jr., Zigaboo Modeliste, Kermit Ruffins, Katdelic, and many more.
Together, these musicians come together as the versatile MJ’s Brass Boppers, offering a taste of authentic New Orleans style with a West Coast flair.
This production is sold-out, but there’s still a chance to see the show!
Thu Nov 14 through Sat Nov 16 at 8pm*
*Pre-show performance begins at 7:30pm
This production performs in Roble Gym at 375 Santa Teresa Street.
For safety reasons, we cannot accommodate late admission to our performances.
This production travels throughout multiple spaces in Roble Gymnasium and offers limited seating space with primarily standing room. We welcome you to email questions and concerns to TAPSinformation@stanford.edu.
REVIVAL is a co-production with Stanford’s Institute for Diversity in the Arts, BLACKstage Theater Company, and Stanford Arts Intensive.
The Drs. Ben and A. Jess Shenson Fund helps provide musical accompaniment for TAPS courses & rehearsals, including those used for this production of REVIVAL.
TAPS productions are also made possible by the Pigott Fund for Drama.
ENGAGE WITH THE PRODUCTION
REVIVAL: Millennial reMembering in the Afro NOW Trailer, featuring rehearsal footage and interviews with Amara Tabor-Smith; IDA director A-Lan Holt; and performer Sequoiah Hippolyte.
A video short of performance footage taken at REVIVAL: Millennial reMembering in the Afro NOW, November 13, 2019. Filming and video editing by Tin Bubble Productions.
THE CREATIVE PROCESS
TAPS’s video series TABLEWORK features live roundtable discussions broadcast on social media, where members of production creative teams and casts talk through their processes, goals, and challenges, sharing a window into the immense scholarly and creative efforts that serve as the foundation of TAPS performances. This episode features REVIVAL’s choreographer / director / lead-collaborator Amara Tabor-Smith; costume designer Dana Kawano; dramaturge Sariel Golomb; and performer/co-costumer designer Dayonna Tucker.
An up-close-and-personal interview with Artist-in-Residence Amara Tabor-Smith, choreographer / director / lead collaborator on REVIVAL. Tabor-Smith discusses the path that led her to her career as a professional dancer, her time with the renowned group Urban Bush Women, and “Conjure Art” — art that utilizes indigenous spiritual rituals to conjure the energies of gods, deities, and/or ancestor spirits with the intention to manifest personal, social, spiritual, and/or environmental justice, alignment, and healing.