How are you? I hope all is well. I am reaching out on behalf of my client 651 ARTS, the renowned Brooklyn-based presenting organization for Contemporary Dance, Theater and Music from across the African Diaspora. 651 has just announced that it is presenting a special Dance piece as the first work in development under its first ever Creative Director Raelle Myrick-Hodges with Antonio Brown Dance’s (ABD) innovative new work Boxed: A Game of Winning and Losing this Spring. Boxed is a work-in-progress created by emerging and dynamic dance company Antonio Brown Dance led by Artistic Director Antonio Brown – a former dancer with Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance – and will mark, ABD’s first major production.
651 is currently in the midst of a major institutional expansion and revitalization phase began when the institution marked its milestone 30thanniversary last year. The appointment of Raelle, who is a respected industry veteran, is indicative of the organization’s strategic focus on further building out its programmatic arm as it continues on a growth trajectory ahead of moving into its new home at the much-buzzed about cultural spaces at 300 Ashland Place (now known as 10 Lafayette) in Downtown Brooklyn.
I have attached the release with more info. Please let me know if we can do something in advance (I am happy to arrange interviews) . I look forward to hearing your thoughts.
Flowers Communications Group- RK, 229 West 135th Street #4A, New York, NY 10030 United States
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
651 ARTS Presents
Antonio Brown Dance’s Innovative New Work-In-Progress
Boxed: A Game of Winning & Losing
Choreographed By Antonio Brown
Under the Direction of Institution’s Inaugural Creative Director
‘Boxed’ Marks Antonio Brown Dance’s First Major Presentation
Thursday, May 23rd – Saturday, May 25th at 7:30PM
Center for Performance Research in Brooklyn, NY
(Brooklyn, NY – April 23, 2019) – Following the recent announcement of its institutional expansion and revitalization, renowned Brooklyn-based organization 651 ARTS is proud to present the first work in development under its inaugural Creative Director Raelle Myrick-Hodges with Antonio Brown Dance’s (ABD) innovative new work Boxed: A Game of Winning & Losing. Part of the organization’s Spring 2019 season, Boxed is a work-in-progress created by the emerging and dynamic dance company Antonio Brown Dance led by Artistic Director Antonio Brown – former dancer with Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance who went on to formABD in 2013– and will premiere on May 23rd through May 25th for three performances at the Center for Performance Research in Brooklyn, NY.
Boxed: A Game of Winning & Losing is a conceptual, vividly fluid work-in-progress exploring the cusp of childhood transforming into adulthood and examining lessons learned in childhood games as potential tools in negotiating life. Can being good at hopscotch get one ahead in life? Can Double Dutch jump rope determine your future? Is the sandbox the first and best way to make friends or destroy them? Ultimately inquiring: Why does adulthood require playing games “to get ahead in life?” Marking ABD’s first major presentation, Boxedchallenges its audience to see the through the harshness of a world of adult ‘game-playing’ to a world that inspire human connection and laughter to discover what is important in life.
“I am thrilled to have our first major presentation in New York with 651 ARTS and excited to work with their fearless Creative Director Raelle Myrick-Hodges who’s work in the field has always been awe-inspiring. In my work, I aim to provide a voice for people -of color, to tell our stories through movement, creating an intimate space that reflects the fluidity of life. With Boxed, I wanted to explore the concept of allowing questions to navigate our creative process and to address questions that are universal to our growth as humans. To be able to present and share this work with the world is an indescribable feeling.”
“I have been a fan of Antonio Brown as a performer and choreographer since I arrived in New York in 2016. The work is simultaneously introspective and hopeful. He makes me excited to see dance because his work has emotional and technical duality – rigorous yet, grounded in the emotional reality of his company. It is the exactly the kind of work we want to support at 651,” said Raelle Myrick Hodges, Creative Director for 651ARTS. “I can say with absolute certainty that Antonio Brown Dance is the future of choreographic dance and at the core of our mission at this institution is the artist and giving them a platform to elevate their art. In my mind, we have to be on the ground floor with the artist, providing them with the support they need to fully realize their creative voice – particularly with emerging talent.”
Since its inception in 1988, 651 ARTS has become a trusted convener of contemporary African Diasporicexpression and remains committed to championing and supporting emerging artists and providing them with a platform to launch and develop their work. Last year, as it ushered in its 30th Anniversary – marking an important milestone in its rich history – 651 strategically entered a phase of rebuilding. Before moving to a new home at the much-buzzed about cultural spaces at 300 Ashland Place (now known as 10 Lafayette) in the next couple of years, the organization has begun to reimagine its artistic and institutional footprint, preparing 651 for the next 30 years and beyond. The appointment of Raelle Myrick-Hodges as 651’s first Creative Director is part of a larger organizational strategy to expand the institution’s artistic vision. Following this year’s schedule, the organization will continue to aggressively program for 2020.
Tickets for Boxed: A Game of Winning & Losing are $20 in advance and available for purchase online at
Please Note: This is an intimate showing and seating is limited
About 651 ARTS
Founded in Brooklyn, NY in 1988, the mission of 651 ARTS is to enrich the lives of artists and intergenerational audiences through captivating cultural experiences that amplify the rich complexities of the African Diaspora and connect with people all over the world. 651 provides professional development for artists of African descent while simultaneously presenting international and regional works in dance, music, film and theater.
651’s signature programs have featured pioneering black choreographers from around the world including Germaine Acogny, Nora Chipaumire, Carmen de Lavallade, Diane McIntyre, Bebe Miller, Abdel R. Salaam and Jawole Willo Jo Zollar. As part of its commitment to the furtherance of conversations and celebration of Diaspora music, the institution has presented dialogues and performances by Somi, Hugh Masekela, and Grammy-winning artist Betty Carter, to name a few.
Theatrical and text-based works by Anna Deavere Smith, Sekou Sundiata, Marc Bamuthi Joseph, Ntozake Shange, Okwui Okpokwasili and Maria Bauman are representative of the hundreds of artists and productions featuring solo creations, collaborations, emerging artists, and works-in-development all produced by 651’s visionary leadership.
The organization’s recent initiatives include: “Live & Outspoken”, an intimate interview and performance series juxtaposing artists across disciplines and/or generations; “Classically Black”, an interdisciplinary initiative including live arts presentations to technology-based dialogues, namely #BlackArtNow Twitter conversations and “Home in the Time of Brooklyn,” a think tank featuring voices of Brooklyn artists age 25-40.
651 ARTS’s 2019 season will feature a condensed series of programs in preparation for the organization’s transition.
About Raelle Myrick-Hodges
Raelle Myrick-Hodges is the founder of Azuka Theater in Philadelphia, now in its 24th year. In prior roles, she was the Artistic Director of Brava for Women in the Arts (San Francisco) – taking the institution from a 90% rental facility to an internationally renowned arts presenter in theater, dance, music within four years. Most recently, she served as the inaugural Curator of Performing Arts for the Contemporary Arts Center New Orleans. As a nationally-known stage director, Myrick-Hodges has worked in over 15 regional theaters and museums including SF MOMA, Playmakers Repertory, California Shakespeare Theater, Theater Minnot (Beirut), The Public Theater, National Black Theater, EDELO Residencia (Chiapas, Mexico) with visual artists Mia Rollow and Caleb Duarte, among others.
About Antonio Brown Dance and Antonio Brown GREAT.
Founded in 2013 by Artistic Director Antonio Brown, the company seeks to explore common human behavior with elements of social and political topics. Antonio Brown Dance aims to bring its versatile audiences closer to dance and movement with unique performance works. Choreographer Antonio is a native of Cleveland but is, by his account a “Native New Yorker by heart”. Residing in Queens for over a decade, Antonio started his dance career at the Juilliard School of dance where he performed in works by Ohad Naharin, Jose Limon, Jiri Kylian, Eliot Feld and Jessica Lang.
Upon graduation, he worked with Sidra Bell Dance, Camille A. Brown & Dancers, Nials Martins and Stephen Pier among others. As a lead dancer for Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance, Antonio worked on over 30 dance works as dancer and choreographer. As Artistic Director of Antonio Brown Dance, Antonio’s work focuses on each dancer’s individual characteristics within the ensemble to create universal conversations surrounding family, childhood, joy and responsibility as a citizen of the world.
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