Renaissance Dance Across the Bridge

Year: 2023-2024
DanceForce Member: Elena Mosley
Artists: Marcus McGregor; Dan Safer; Taganyahu Swaby
Community Partner: Hudson City Library
Audience: 780
County: Columbia

Renaissance Dance Across the Bridge comes to Hudson and Catskill, NY, cities in the upper Hudson Valley of New York State connected by The Rip Van Winkle Bridge. Tatiana Desardouin and Passion Fruit Dance company brings community dance workshops to Hudson in 2022 and 2023. Dan Safer and Marcus McGregor will provide experiences in dance in Catskill, NY during the months of July and October of 2023. From July to October Taganyahu Swaby will connect both Hudson and Catskill with workshops and performance.

Renaissance Dance begins on the Greene County side of bridge to support a new work by the ongoing collaborative team of Marcus McGregor and Dan Safer. They are continuing the trajectory began with “The History of Empires”, a two+ year project started early in the pandemic that premiered at La Mama in NYC last fall, with developmental support from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and NY State Choreographers Initiative. The two are now developing a second work and exploring even further the nature of their collaboration. Fusing and contrasting their respective backgrounds in contemporary ballet and downtown dance/theater, McGregor and Safer are creating unique, highly theatrical dance
pieces crossing multiple boundaries. Based as much in their close friendship and their ongoing conversations about culture, politics, ethics, and dumb jokes as in their experiences as dancers who
find themselves creating, teaching, and performing at the bright young ages of 60 and 50, respectively, they are constantly in a process of discovery, refinement, adjustment, and surprise. Dan Safer and Marcus Mc Gregor will dedicate a week-long session in October of 2023, which will culminate in a public work in progress showing of the new work, as well as a “studio showing” of McGregor’s
acclaimed solo from the first half of “The History of Empires”.

Taganyahu Swaby has studied Capoeira Angola, a dance form that has origins in Central and Western African and was developed in Brazil by captures African and indigenous Brazilians as a means of liberation from oppression. For the last two decades Swaby has traveled and lived between New York and Salvador training Capoeira Angola Society and continues to teach in the Hudson Valley and in Brooklyn. Swaby will share teachings through movement workshops, accompanied with traditional music in Hudson and Catskill, NY. On July 21st, Tagan will present a Capoeira workshop for all ages at the Hudson Area Library. The library will also host a literacy activity with books on dance and capoeira. He will follow with a Capoeira Roda, a community gathering circle on Friday, August 11th at the Hudson Riverfront Park. On October 14, 2023 Taganyahu will give a lecture on the origins of Capoeira and its commitment to liberate the oppressed at CREATE Arts Council in Catskill, NY. A Capoeira Roda will incorporate participants of his workshops, members of local and Brooklyn communities who respect and live the teachings of Capoeira. An Open Mic style of dancers and musicians will bring the celebration to an end. The Venue will be the Yaad Wellness Studio in Catskill, NY.

Renaissance Dance Across the Bridge will connect communities through movement, music, social awareness, and cross cultures.
Community partners include, Operation Unite NY, Hudson Area Library, Yaad Wellness Center, and the City of Hudson. Renaissance Dance is curated by Elena Mosley, a member of the New York State DanceForce. DanceForce is a network of dance activists working to increase the quality and quantity of dance throughout New York State.