project image
Bradley Buehring

first performed on January 29, 2016
Abrons Arts Center, New York, NY
performed three times in 2016


Elsa Brown, Kate Brandt, Lydia Okrent

Brooklyn, New York


“Originators” is a choreography and lecture shaped from the language of history and dance. This dense activation of content refuses to be claimed by a specific genre— rather, “Originators” proposes a new space where blended mediums meet without a hierarchy of value in a time-based work.

“Originators” is a collection of travel logs and personal anecdotes that reveal an analytic and humorous subtext for my work in choreography, ethnography, and installation. This frame of reference points to my dance work’s origination story. “Originators” blends identity politics with cultural histories from a trip to Mexico, where I conducted an ethnography of Sonidero dances. Mashed against these ethnographic observations are anecdotal revelations from my personal history and identity as a queer Latina woman born and raised in Chicago. With these subjects as root material, I observe my past and draw direct links to where my dance work began.

Three other performers help bring “Originators” to life: Elsa Brown as a domestic worker who makes seltzer, Lydia Okrent as a dancer guiding me through complex dance routines, and Kate Brandt as a mother figure, calling the performance in stage-manager fashion to keep everyone on track. Told in a personal tone, “Originators” is a cosmogram of marginality, class, and life that is dependent on the collective experience to physically and spiritually lift each other up.