Sun, May 21, 2017
Links Hall At Constellation
HEAD ON is an evening of dance presented by women and non-binary choreographers whose works center on confronting the raw, marginalized and glamorous realities and perceptions of their bodies. The four works shown will be wide-ranging in style and in the ways that they zoom in on a political nature of being, for women and non-binary individuals. Included in the program will be a work by conceived and performed by a diverse group of young women (roughly ages 15-25) from diverse backgrounds including Syrian refugee and Orthodox Jewish communities of NW Chicago, lead by Shawn Lent, a performance by Burlesque Queen, Mz Mr and dancers, a work by Hillary Aarons, and a work by Ysaye McKeever. It will be an evening of intersectional feminism celebrated through moving bodies, as well as an interrogation of dance as a means of intervention. The proceeds from this event will benefit Dance Peace, an organization that provides arts education for young Syrian Refugees in Chicago.
Hillary Aarons is a choreographer of concert dance, theater, film, and comedy in Chicago. She graduated from Northwestern with a BA in Dance and Creative Writing. She teaches dance at studios and workshops around Chicagoland. Her work has been presented in the Jump Rhythm Jazz Project's 2015 show: GETTING DOWN, GOING FORWARD, and her piece, ON THE FRONT, was shown in 2017 as a part of the Chicago Public Library's "Made In Chicago" Dance Series.
Shawn Lent moves this world as a social practice artist, with experience from a field in Bosnia to a children’s hospital in revolutionary Egypt. Shawn serves as Program Director for Chicago Dancemakers Forum, Alliance Building Lead for Createquity, and project lead for Dance Peace and Global Water Dances - Flint, MI. Previously, she was the advising coordinator for EducationUSA Egypt at AMIDEAST, a U.S. Fulbright Scholar, UN Alliance of Civilizations International Fellow, Commencement Speaker for Millikin University, and presenter at the University of Maryland, Hope College, Universal Exposition Milan, and TEDx Shibin El Kom. Shawn holds a Masters in Arts Management from Columbia College Chicago. For more information, visit shawnlent.com.
Mz Mr is a Burlesque Queen, producer, and choreographer dedicated to stripping away the gender binary and creating strong, empowered presentations of femininity. A professional strip tease artist for nearly a decade, Mz Mr has taught burlesque and movement classes for over 6 years, successfully choreographing for and performing in Chicago's top rated burlesque venues, including a feature as headliner of the Windy City Burlesque Fest in 2016, and exhibitions at Detroit's THE DIRTY SHOW, St. Louis's SHOW ME BURLESQUE FESTIVAL, and countless other nightlife and theater venues throughout the nation. Mz Mr began her transition, changing her professional name from Mister Junior, to Ms Mr Jr, and finally to Mz Mr, and has showcased the force of hyper-femininity in expanding ideas of movement, gender, sexuality, and sensuality, measuring her success as an instructor in the presence of her students on the local and national performance scene. Trained at the National Institute of Flamenco Arts and in the folk dances of her indigenous federation of the American Southwest, her work is an eclectic mix of bewitching rhythmic explorations of sound, club culture, and expressive movement.
Ysaÿe McKeever is a dancer, choreographer and filmmaker from Chicago, IL. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a BFA in Dance and Minor in Philosophy in 2013. She has also had the honor of training at the Taipei National University of the Arts. Ysaÿe is currently in her third season dancing with Aloha Chicago.