I’ve created a dedicated website for BLACK MOON
Black Moon (La Lune Noir) Act I
Monstah Black and Major Andres Scurlock
Thursday and Friday, September 15–16 at 8:00pm
DANCE NEW AMSTERDAM
280 Broadway, 2nd Floor (entrance on Chambers), New York, NY
Post-show discussion on 9/16 moderated by Matthew Morrison
FREE Preview: THUR September 8 at 12:15pm
DNA’s 2nd Floor Gallery, brief Q&A to follow
Tickets: $17 general, $12 DNA members, $14 students/seniors, $12 advance
Dance New Amsterdam
Black Moon (La Lune Noir)
A world premiere
Choreographer: Monstah Black
Dance Company: Motion Sickness (Artistic Director, Monstah Black)
Composer and Music Director: Major Andres Scurlock
Video Installation and Lighting Designer: Holly Daggers
“In “Black Moon (La Lune Noir),” at Dance New Amsterdam, the protagonist is a monstrous black creature, the glam-fabulous performer Monstah Black, who has refashioned the modernist landmark from the perspective of an African-American artist in a country led by a black President.”
– THE NEW YORKER
Black Moon (La Lune Noir) is an interdisciplinary/multimedia cabaret operetta based on Arnold Schoenberg’s melodrama “Pierrot Lunaire,” rewritten from an African-American male perspective and musically re-imagined through popular genres such as Afrobeat and house, deconstructing classical and contemporary forms to infuse the work with emotional power. The work is an electric experience visually and sonically.
Dance New Amsterdam is supporting the development of Black Moon (La Lune Noir) through a 2011-12 residency. Black Moon (La Lune Noir) was funded, in part, through Meet The Composer’s MetLife Creative Connections program.
Monstah Black studied choreography/performance at Virginia Commonwealth University receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and his motion picture debut playing the role of choreographer/dance instructor for a porn film starring Jeff Stryker. Following his undergraduate education, Black began choreographing for happenings in nightclubs, art galleries, black boxes and warehouses in Washington D.C. His ensemble, Bedrock Goes Kaboom, terrorized the nation’s capital with cross-dressing madness and ballistic/physical theater, leading to a role as choreographer for a music video for D.C.-based go-go band EU.
Receiving generous support from the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities for his one man show The Acid Box Cabaret, Black toured along the East Coast. Following his one man show he began to create ensembles incorporating musicians and strippers, fusing rock and roll, funk and glam with the dance and visual art. Out of this came the site-specific, funk apocalyptic spectacle Delicious Hunger, Hunger Delicious, an opera featuring psycho burlesque and screaming shamans performed at The National Theater. Simultaneously, Black toured internationally with The Liz Lerman Dance Exchange and Maida Withers Dance Construction.
Relocating to New York, Black started building shows with music composition as the foundation. His work has been commissioned by Thelma Hill Performing Arts Center, Blackout Arts Collective, Muse Dance Theater, Rowan University Dancers, Edgeworks Dance Theater, Jane Franklin and Dancers, Topaz Arts, Dixon Place and Movement Research and Nicholas Leichter Dance (currently touring The Whizz). Monstah was a recipient of a Dance Theater Workshop Studio Residency where he debuted Motion Sickness (a dance company) alongside his band The Sonic Leroy.
He has received support from American Music Association’s Music For Dance and The Lower Manhattan Cultural Council for the creation of his show Submerged In Blue. Black works seasonally with Cabaret Cataplexy, a sexy variety show he co-produces with his glam partner Ashley Brockington and Queer Arts Impact. Coming soon is the release of The Blacks debut album recess, a music venture he fronts with his life partner Manchildblack Black. He holds a Masters in Fine Arts in New Media Art and Performance. monstahblack.com
Major Andres Scurlock’s piano playing is both powerful and commanding with elements of true lyricism. Born in Washington D.C. and raised in New York City, Major has cultivated a personal sensibility as a pianist and composer that has set his work apart from others. He has proven himself as an accomplished pianist with both BM and MM degrees from the Juilliard School under the instruction of Jerome Lowenthal. He’s currently a member of Juilliard’s Music Advancement Program Piano Faculty where he’s been teaching for more than ten years. Scurlock’s additional studies include the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara and the International Piano Festival in Israel. He’s appeared in Piano Master Classes hosted by Leon Fleisher and Abbey Simon. Scurlock is also known for his abilities as a keyboard player, fulfilling his love for funk, soul and rock in the New York City club scene.
As a composer, Scurlock’s works have been performed nationally with great acclaim, and he has worked with various choreographers including Hope Boykin and Desmond Richardson. While attending Juilliard, he was awarded a full tuition scholarship from The Fabian Foundation and William Patscheck Piano Scholarship for both his degree studies in Piano Performance. He has appeared at The Blue Note, Alice Tully Hall, Merkin Hall, Aaron Davis Hall and The Juilliard’s Peter Jay Sharpe Theater. As a producer and curator, he has produced a series of concerts with several artists including Living Colour, Vijay Iyer, Imani Uzuri and Barry Harris. Scurlock has collaborated with various vocalists such as Marlon Saunders, Alvin Crawford, Monstah Black and the Sonic Leroy, and Martha Wash. Scurlock has strong belief in giving back to the community and has been highly active in New York City’s arts education scene. He has been awarded a New York Congressional Honor for his services in Arts Education. He is currently completing his operetta titled Black Moon to be performed at Dance New Amsterdam in New York where is a composer in residence.
Holly Daggers is a visual artist and live-mix VJ. She performed as the onstage VJ for Microsoft’s XBOX KINECT launch in Times Square which featured game-inspired visuals on seven jumbo screens and more than 600 dancers in a flash mob concert.
In 2003, Daggers founded the live-media performance series EyeWash, which has produced more than 200 audio-visual collaborations. Her audience-interactive installations have been presented at the Museum of Modern Art and Chelsea Art Museum in New York. She performed concert visuals for Moby and toured with diverse music acts ranging from The Roots to Page McConnell to Hillary Duff. Holly was voted a “Top 20 VJ” by DJ Magazine (UK) two years in a row.
Her current projects include VJ residencies at Pacha NYC and R Bar in Manhattan, and upcoming dance/theater collaborations include 3D hiphop with Decadancetheater in the New York Fringe Festival and Black Moon at Dance New Amsterdam, based on a Schoenberg opera with Monstah Black and Major Scurlock.
Holly is supported by Edirol/Roland, Korg and Reflecmedia. Her portfolio and other visual interests can be found at wetcircuit.com