Camille A. Brown Brings “Black Joy” To Harlem Stage

June 14, 2024

In a powerful celebration of African American culture, renowned choreographer and director Camille A. Brown is curating a night of dance centered around the theme of “Black Joy” at Harlem Stage.

The multiple Tony nominee, known for redefining contemporary perspectives on Black art and identity, has assembled a stellar lineup of dancers and dancemakers to join her company Camille A. Brown & Dancers for this jubilant season finale.

The June 14th and 15th performances will feature works by Chloe Davis, Juel D. Lane, Mayte Natalio, Rickey Tripp, and Maleek Washington alongside Brown’s own acclaimed piece “TURF.” This potent mix of choreographic voices promises to showcase the vibrancy, resilience, and sheer joy that pulses through the African American experience.”Black art and Black lives are a perpetual source of wonder, beauty and celebration,” says Brown. “With this program, we wanted to create a space that allows that brilliance to shine through unbridled movement and uncompromising Blackness.”

Brown’s curatorial vision for “Black Joy” emerges from her trailblazing work uplifting underrepresented narratives on stages like Broadway and The Metropolitan Opera. As the first Black woman in decades to receive a Tony nomination for directing a play, her critically lauded revival of “for colored girls…” ushered in a new era for the Great White Way.

That same boundary-breaking season, Brown made history again as the first Black artist to direct a mainstage production at The Met with Terence Blanchard’s “Fire Shut Up in My Bones.” She has since choreographed additional landmark operas there, including the recent “Champion” premiere.

Now, this native New Yorker and child of a Jamaican immigrant family returns to her artistic roots in Harlem, the iconic neighborhood that catalyzed generations of Black creative expression and pride. At the intimate, Brown’s “Black Joy” program promises to immerse audiences in the ecstatic traditions of African American dance while elevating vital new voices.

Harlem has always been a sanctuary for our stories, our struggles, our triumphs – the full breadth of the Black experience,” says Brown. “To celebrate that life-affirming spirit of joy through dance here is incredibly powerful.”As the Harlem Renaissance continues evolving into the 21st century, Camille A. Brown is helping write its next chapter through works that capture the transcendent radiance of Black artistry.

This summer, get ready to bask in that brilliance.

Photo credit: Camille A. Brown (Harlem Stage).

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