Apr 2nd 2023

LabE is a series of monthly cohort meetings addressing particular needs of disabled dance artists.

Limited capacity. Advanced registration is requested and appreciated.

The LabE gathering on April 2nd is designed to be a safe, disability-centric space where artists can come together to share a work-in-progress, try out new ideas, workshop concepts, and experiment with new scores. Hosted by Maggie Bridger, this inclusive event is open to all artists who seek a supportive community where they can connect with peers who share similar experiences and offer and receive support, encouragement, and constructive feedback.

This gathering aims to foster community connections among Deaf, disabled, sick, neurodivergent, and Mad artists while providing a platform for artists to explore their creativity and showcase their unique perspectives.

In-progress projects will be presented by Sydney Erlikh & Deborah Goodman.

Choreographers Sydney Erlikh and Deborah Goodman, both having personal connections to Poland and Ukraine, started discussing the trauma the older generation is re-experiencing because of the war. These discussions led them to develop a new work to acknowledge the war’s physical and emotional impact. This new work draws its inspiration from Jose Limon’s glorious dedication to post WW II war torn Europe, Missa Brevis, which depicts indomitable humanity, rising up after near-destruction.

Erlikh and Goodman seek to acknowledge the impact of war on people with disabilities who are often unable to flee. Recent news stories about families sleeping in hallways or elderly persons unable to travel have reminded them of the disability community’s power to create collective access and speak out against human rights violations.

The original music for Jose Limon’s choreograph,  “Missa Brevis in Tempore Belli”, was composed by Hungarian composer Zoltán Kodály at the end of World War II. It is a Mass in a time of war. Composer Will Bennett creates a new score for this 30-minute work. His music and research, inspired by the original work, will focus on themes of Peace, Hope, Despair, Introspection, and coming together.

If you are an artist who is interested in showcasing your art or working through new ideas, please reach out to Maggie at mbridg8@uic.edu to participate in this event.

LabE is open to all Chicago-area dance artists who self-identify as Deaf/deaf/hard of hearing, sick, mad, neurodivergent, disabled or living with a disability, and/or who have lived experience with disability or impairment. This space is particularly meant for those interested in exploring disability and impairment-informed modes of practicing dance.

Additional Access Information is available here. For any other questions or requests regarding accessibility accommodations, please contact HCL’s Accessibility Coordinator, Yolanda Cesta Cursach Montilla (yolanda@highconceptlabs.org).

About LabE

LabE, curated by HCL Fellow Artist in Residence Maggie Bridger, is a series of monthly cohort meetings addressing particular needs of disabled dance artists such as studio access, development and production support, and platforms for promoting Chicago’s sick, Deaf and disabled dance artists.

About the Curator

Maggie Bridger is a 2022 City of Chicago Individual Artist Program grantee and PhD candidate at the University of Illinois at Chicago in the Department of Disability and Human Development. She is a co-founder of the Inclusive Dance Workshop Series at Access Living, for which she and her project partner received a 2021 Chicago Area Albert Schweitzer Fellowship. She was part of the inaugural cohort of the Dancing Disability Lab at UCLA and serves on the planning committee for CounterBalance, Chicago’s annual integrated dance concert.

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