- Visual Arts
At the crux of expansive task and deteriorating form, Alex Romania’s multidisciplinary work investigates bodies of cultural debris amidst the invisible everyday and toxic ingestions, consuming, purging, and breaking apart. Romania’s work delves into spaces of the unimaginable, staring into the unknown to consider a crude and splendid humanity.
Led by choreographer and interdisciplinary artist Alex Romania, KLUTZ is an exploration of destabilizing nonsense on the sick state of the American psyche. This multidisciplinary performance work utilizes text, video, music, and dance to form absurd and poetic thought memes; wanderlust-nowhere, apocalypse-nostalgia, sublime horrors of the spectacularly mundane, and ______________________, emerge as dregs of this ‘Orwellian slop sink’. Almost a backyard-sci-fi-space-epic, this genre bursting C-performance joins the pileup of hot consumer trash in the looming obsession with The End.
KLUTZ will have its world premiere May 9-13, at Abrons Arts Center in the playhouse theater, a historic multimedia venue for the avant-garde since 1915.
In development since 2015, KLUTZ has received various levels of support through it’s development. KLUTZ has shown work-in-progress excerpts at the 2015 Performancy Forum Series by Panoply Performance Lab, the 2016 New Voices in Live Performance festival at the Center for Performance Research, the 2016 Movement Research Fall Festival, and Movement Research at the Judson church in 2017. KLUTZ received residency support in 2016 from a Summer Space Grant at Brooklyn Arts Exchange, and a residency at Old Furnace Artist Residency in the Winter of 2017. For the May 2018 premiere, KLUTZ is receiving a $5,000 commission from Abrons Arts Center and the Jerome Foundation, with up to $6,600 of in-kind donations through production support and rehearsal space through Abrons. While we are extremely grateful for this support, KLUTZ is a large undertaking, with many collaboratoring artists - we are still in need to fundraise $11,000 to help us pay artist fees, hire a lighting designer, and purchase materials for installation elements of the production. Your support is vital in realizing this project!
KLUTZ involves a cast of eight performers, a video artist, composer, and lighting designer. A multidisciplinary project that with live performance, music, costumes, and sculptural and video installations featuring Alex Romania’s father, Arthur Romania, as a performer. KLUTZ is made possible by many dedicated collaborators including Andrew Braddock, Frank Conversano, Maira Duarte, Kaia Gilje, Alvaro Gonzalez, Millie Kapp, Raquel Mavecq, Butch Merigoni, Marc Mosteirin, Arthur Romania, Taylor Sakarett, Emily Smith, and Ben Wohlfarth.
Here is who we are:
Choreographer / Costumes / Music / Video / Performance - Alex Romania has presented work and taught throughout the U.S. and abroad - most recently at Huerto Roma Verde (MX City), Segundo Piso (Puebla, MX), Human Resources (LA), Encuentro (Lima, Peru), UV Estudios (Buenos Aires, Argentina), the Pillsbury House (Minneapolis), the Center for Performance Research (NYC), and el Museo del Arte Contemporáneo (Lima). As a performer, Romania has performed in works by Kathy Westwater, Catherine Galasso, Andy de Groat, Eddie Peake, Simone Forti, and Steve Paxton. Romania is pleased to be in residence at Abrons Arts Center presenting a new work, KLUTZ. alexromania.com
Core Performance Collaborators:
Andrew Braddock was born in Fredericksburg, Ohio. He has made performance and video work while living in Chicago, Asheville, New Orleans, and New York City, where he now lives. braddock.website
Millie Kapp is a New York-based performing artist. In 2013, she graduated with an MA in Performance Studies from NYU and completed her undergraduate degree in 2010 with a BA in Visual and Critical Studies from School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Kapp has presented her performance work in Oakland, Maine, Toronto, Philadelphia, Montreal, Minneapolis, Chicago and New York. She’s a former Chez Bushwick artist in residence and has attended additional residencies at the Institute for American Art, the Elizabeth Foundation, the New Dance Alliance, and the Chicago Cultural Center. Most recently, she shared her work in New York at Situations, The Kitchen, La MaMa, the Center for Performance Research, Roulette, and with AUNTS among other places. She's curated and programmed performance and other live events in New York City and was previously adjunct faculty at Stony Brook University. milliekapp.com
Raquel Mavecq is a dance artist, performer, researcher of the body and movement teacher from São Paulo, Brazil. Based in New York, she has been choreographing and performing in the intersections of dance, sound, video and installation, since 2010.Raquel holds a BA in Dance and Performance Art from PUC-SP in Brazil, is a Laban/Bartenieff Certified Movement Analyst (CMA), as well as a classically trained Pilates Instructor. Her lifelong training on the body is layered with ongoing studies on kinesiology, biology, physics, philosophy, geology, astronomy and micro/macro systems of organization. https://vimeo.com/user2843216
With Performance Collaborators:
Maira Duarte moved from Mexico to NYC in 2008 to pursue performing opportunities as well as an M.A. in Dance Education at NYU. She moved back to Mexico in 2012 to work as a full time dance professor at the University of The Americas Puebla. In 2014, Maira came back to NYC to found and direct Dance To The People a collective of movers sharing resources to develop teaching practices, performances, movement research and improvisation. Maira is also a contributor to Dancer Citizen, an online publication exploring socially engaged dance artists. www.mairaduarte.com
Kaia Gilje is a performance artist focused on collaborative experiments. She is interested in inhabiting performance with an intention to practice unique forms of attention and engagement in relationships.
Alvaro Gonzalez Dupuy is a Dance artist based in Santiago de Chile and New York City. He holds a graduate degree in Dance with a concentration in Performance and Pedagogy (based in Laban/Leeder Technique) from the Universidad Academia de Humanismo Cristiano. As a movement artist, he has developed a background in Modern, Contemporary, Contact improvisation, Release, Floorwork and has develop a momentum based movement vocabulary. While in Chile Alvaro performed for varied choreographers and directors such as, Patricio Bunster, Rodrigo Fernandez, Valentina Pavez, Luis Eduardo Araneda, Natalia Sabat, Sergio Valenzuela, Isabel Croxatto, Christophe Haleb, among others. He has produced, performed, and assisted at Porlabocamuereelpez/CE (Chile) as well as Triple-Pack Productions (Chile). He was performer and production assistant at Danza en Cruz Company and performer at different festivals in Chile, Mexico and Bolivia. estadoflotante.com
Butch Merigoni grew up in New Orleans and moved to Brooklyn in 2002 to pursue a masters in painting from the Pratt Institute of Art. After finishing the program in 2005, he started focusing less on object making and more on performative experiments. Discovering the work of Allan Kaprow was a major catalyst in this shift. Through his work Butch started to recognize the value of the ephemeral, the existence of performance in the everyday and the inseparable nature of art and life. As a result, his work has become an attempt at non performance. An investigation and display of more life than art. Currently, Butch is researching and developing at interdisciplinary work called 'All Of It.' This performance will be shown at the Satellite Performance Project in Miami on December 9th. butchmerigoni.com
Emily Smith received her BFA from Alfred University with a major in Fine Arts and a minor in Biology and Dance. Emily’s current Contemporary Dance Company is called “NOT for reTALE”, where she designs and creates kinetic sculptures and performance, using materials such as fabric, furniture, light, and metal. She and Elena Rose Light are co-producers of the annual performance series called Fête, in which they produce multidisciplinary work in alternative spaces in NY. She also worked as a dancer with the innovative dance company Leimay at “the Cave” in Williamsburg. She has performed with Leimay at BAM Fischer and currently works as a fabricator at Arcana Metals. notforretale.com
Music Collaborator / Live Composition - Marc Mosteirin is a versatile musician and educator. To be exact, a composer, arranger, pianist, guitarist, and all-around good listener. Keyboardist in the band Pinc Louds, conspirator in the cult of Wild Torus. Frequent yeasayer to Alex Romania. Former NYC schoolteacher and teacher-mentor. Experienced wedding officiant and performance art junky.
Video Installation Collaborator - Taylor Sakarett is a Native New Yorker collecting and cataloging in that city. Identifying the absurdities of familiar culture through foraging and photographs, field work and sonics. Making fake and real narratives with these disparate clippings using recordings, interviews, bootlegs, drawing and archiving. taylorsakarett.com
Video Performance Collaborator - Frank Conversano, rumored to be "the bastard child of isadora duncan and jackie gleason," appeared in his first performance art piece in 1974. that year in paris, he met andrew de groat and robert wilson, and joined in the launch of andy's dance company, red notes. Over the next ten years, he appeared in numerous productions of de groat's, and began presenting solo works of his own design. in addition, frank was an original cast member of the ground-breaking opera einstein on the beach by robert wilson and philip glass in 1976. he danced his interpretation of yvonne rainer's trio a for the pbs-tv series dance in america segment entitled "beyond the mainstream." his film dizzy, created with matthew buckingham, won an ann arbor film festival award for best in festival. in his own work, he collaborated with several composers, but most often with lenny picket, saxophone phenom, and michael galasso, violin virtuoso. recognition has included an nea choreographer's fellowship, and a ny dance and performance award ("bessie"). presently, frank is an enthusiastic supporter and participant in dance for parkinson's. frankconversano.com
Video Performance Collaborator - Arthur Romania is the father of Alex Romania. He does not consider himself a performer or an artist, and is an arts enthusiast who has performed in Alex's video work under directorial coercion.
Music Composition and Video Performance - Ben Wohlfarth is an electronic music composer and producer who works with both pop and experimental styles. He performs live with a focus on recording and writing. Check out his newest album here: peripheralsounds.bandcamp.com/album/now-new