“With spidery limbs and a sprawling imagination,” writes Dance Magazine, “Brooklyn-based Raja Feather Kelly brings a vivid boundlessness to all he does. Whether dancing for the likes of Reggie Wilson or cooking up his own darkly entertaining dance-theater productions, he seems insatiably curious.”
Last spring, this restless life led the 29-year-old choreographer and dancer to create Andy Warhol’s Tropico, an archetypal mash-up of movies, theater, television, and children’s stories alongside a 12-member ensemble that The New York Times called an act of “deadpan wit” that “shifts seamlessly from absurd to cheeky to the unexpectedly and piercingly sincere.” Kelly currently choreographs, writes, and directs his own work as artistic director of a NYC-based company called the feath3r theory. On top of that, he won the 2016 Solance MacArthur Choreography Award. His spotlight these days grows a bit brighter than most.
This week, Kelly comes to the Valley to work with Hatchery, the pre-professional teen dance company at the School for Contemporary Dance and Thought (SCDT). Kelly and the teens with create a new work that will be shown alongside his company for a Friday evening showcase. It’s right in line with the mission of SCDT — which signed a new 10-year lease on its downtown Northampton space this past fall — to draw internationally acclaimed performance artists into discussions, and onto stages, with young locals.
The Feather Theory with Raja Feather Kelly: Friday at 10 a.m. (class) and 6:30-8 p.m. (performance). $10. Studio 4 at the School for Contemporary Dance and Thought, 25 Main St. Suite 444, Northampton. (413) 695-1799, scdtnoho.com.
— Hunter Styles, firstname.lastname@example.org