GERALDCASELDANCE presents Procession
Part ritual, part procession, part communal affirmation, Procession/Process/Possession is an outdoor movement essay for six artists of color that activates downtown Santa Cruz’s busy Pacific Avenue. Performed by Gerald Casel, Annalise Constantz, Meli Garcia, Alexandra Mannings, Río Saúl, with live sound design by Roco Cordova, the piece invokes embodied portrayals of life’s dramatic spectrum from death and transformation to healing and joy. Dancers enact movement patterns found in nature juxtaposed by and set against a bustling downtown street. An intervention against the pace of enterprise, this piece proposes an alternative sense of time as experienced by queer bodies of color reclaiming an urban landscape.
Performed by Gerald Casel, Annalise Constantz, Meli Gomez, Alexandra Mannings, and Río Saúl García Ramírez (see bios, below).
Live vocals and sound design by Roco Córdova
BBQueer (BLACK, BROWN, AND QUEER!) is a collaboration between three dance/art & community-centered organizations: Motion Pacific Dance (MP), Tannery World Dance and Cultural Center (TWDCC), and Gerald Casel Dance (GCD). BBQueer provides a home where the BIPOC queer community can feel seen, affirmed, included & safe; this festival is where QTBIPOC folx can share their work, celebrate their identities, & take workshops.
About the artists:
Gerald Casel is a Bay Area-based dance artist, equity activator, and antiracist educator. As director of GERALDCASELDANCE, his choreographic work complicates and provokes questions surrounding colonialism, collective cultural amnesia, whiteness and privilege, and the tensions between the invisible/perceived/obvious structures of power. Casel is an Associate Professor of Dance and is the Provost of Porter College at UC Santa Cruz. A graduate of The Juilliard School with an MFA from UW Milwaukee, they received a Bessie award for sustained achievement. Casel founded Dancing Around Race, an ongoing community engaged-participatory process that interrogates systemic racial inequity in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. www.geraldcasel.com
Annalise Constantz is a dance performer and educator born, raised, and currently living on unceded Ramaytush Ohlone land. She works with children in their early years to build meaningful connections with nature, themselves, and their communities. Additionally, Annalise has presented her own work at Motion Pacific in Santa Cruz, SAFEhouse Arts in San Francisco, and experiments with other mediums including writing, visual art, and film
Meli Gómez (they/them) is a first generation queer artist. They attended UCSC, earning a BA in Theater Arts, minor in Dance. They’ve been part of multiple projects locally through acting, film, and dance. Most recently having performed at Motion Pacific in, you are held here., in a company of 10 dancers exploring radical softness and queer community. Today they continue weaving their intersecting identities into their movement and art.
Alexandra Mannings is a dance artist hailing from Atlanta, GA. She received her Bachelor’s degrees in Physics and Dance from The University of Alabama and now studies as a graduate student at University of California- Santa Cruz. Alexandra enjoys exploring dance in relation to text, film, and place and how they can enhance our experiences of movement. Being relatively new to the Santa Cruz community, she is excited to participate in the BBQueer festival to meet and connect with Black and Brown Queer artists in the area.
Río Saúl is a rural trans artist from Salinas, CA, part of the ancestral lands of the Ohlone, Rumsen, and Mutsun Native nations. In their hometown, they have researched the artistic practices of local migrant trans Latina performers and has taught dance with the Arts Council for Monterey County in public schools. They are interested in new imaginings of justice, community autonomy, and are currently exploring how moving through grief might be necessary in creating new worlds.
Born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Roco Córdova is a vocalist, composer, and improviser based in the San Francisco Bay Area. They possess a B.Mus. in Composition from the Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music and an M.A. in Composition from Mills College in Oakland, California. Cordova’s work fuses diverse influences with electronic media, chance operations, gradual processes, noise, improvisation, and extended vocal and timbral techniques of composition.