Poet, essayist, playwright, and MacArthur Fellow Claudia Rankine and 2021 Herb Alpert Award in the Arts-winning choreographer, curator, and writer Will Rawls join forces in What Remains (2017), a collaborative performance running from Thursday, Dec. 9 to Saturday, Dec. 11 at REDCAT in downtown Los Angeles.
Presented as part The Sharon Disney Lund Dance Program, What Remains investigates the subtler, culturally ingrained forms of “surveillance” that have historically shaped the Black American experience.
“One never just happens to be black, even in the most abstract dance,” Rawls was quoted in the Danspace Project official site (where the work premiered in New York City). “Whiteness in our society—and this is something Claudia talks about, too—is the space that produces the conditions and terms against which all other lives are measured and enabled or disabled. Dance doesn’t escape those power dynamics.”
More about the performance from REDCAT:
Through movement and voice, four performers invite us across the threshold of a historical void produced by anti-Blackness and respond to violence and disappearance with a resonant, ghostly chorus. Inspired by Rankine’s texts on racial violence—Citizen (2014) and Don’t Let Me Be Lonely (2004)—the result is a performance at the edge of dance and poetry that meets and challenges the erasure of Black citizens with its own immersive disturbances.
Since its premiere at Danspace Project, What Remains has presented at Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, and Walker Art Center in Minneapolis.