On Friday September 1st from 6-9pm Duane Cyrus and Theatre of Movement will present a community engagement forum––An Evening with the Creative Class at the grand opening of the curated visual art exhibition inspired by the legacy of U.S. Coast Guard hero Charles W. David Jr. The visual art exhibit and several other multidisciplinary events and performances presented by Cyrus throughout the coming year, are titled Comanche: Hero Complexities.
An Evening with the Creative Class is a unique opportunity for audiences to experience and learn more about how artists make their work and meet the talented people who help drive the artistic and creative sector of North Carolina’s Piedmont Triad region. This is a “First Friday” event. Following the Friday September 1st Evening with the Creative Class grand opening, the exhibit will run thru September 20th. Contact gallery for regular hours. Admission for the visual art exhibit is free (other events may be ticketed) Then on September 22nd at 7pm the ticketed live performance premiere for Comanche: Hero Complexities choreographed by Cyrus will take place in the UNCG Auditorium (402 Tate St.) Contact Triad Stage Box office: 336.272-0160
Comanche: Hero Complexities is inspired by the heroic acts of Charles W. David Jr., a Caribbean-American United States Coast Guardsman who lost his life helping to save nearly 100 drowning servicemen in the icy waters off Greenland during World War II. The exhibit and other events throughout the year investigate the possible confluence of questions surrounding themes of rescue, self-sacrifice, and heroism when black male bodies are positioned in contemporary spaces. What does it mean to be a problem and a savior at the same time? And how do black contemporary bodies simultaneously relate to past acts of heroism while negotiating present-day dilemmas through art?
The visual art exhibition will feature the works of Joseph Johnson, Mark Wagoner (photography), Devin Newkirk (video/photography), and Barber (intermedia art) each exploring imagery connected to the Comanche themes described above. Duane Cyrus is an associate professor at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and produces arts events in the Triad as well as domestic and international events with his artists’ collective, Theatre of Movement. (theatreofmovement.org)
Director, Choreographer: Duane Cyrus
Technical Coordinator: Chris Fleming
Music Composer: Justin Beloved, Angus Tarnawsky
Intermedia Artist: Barber
Guest Performers: Maurice Chestnut, Brooklyn Mack
Performers: Billy Hawkains, Tyrell Simpson, Melvin Sutton, Devontee Tanner, Devonte Wells
Poetry: Josephus III and the Poetry Project
Visual Art: Joseph Johnson, Devin Newkirk, Mark Wagoner
Assistant: Nia Sadler
Research Partners: Dr. Cerise Glenn, Erin Lawrimore
Community Partners: Adam Carlin, Rashod Wells
Comanche: Hero Complexities is sponsored in part by the University of North Carolina at Greensboro Provost's Strategic Seed Grant for Vibrant Communities, College of Visual and Performing Arts Dean's Discretionary Fund, UNCG Faculty First Summer Excellence Award, and the School of Dance. In association with the Poetry Project, Greensboro Project Space, UNCG African American and African Diaspora Studies Program, and UNCG Universities Libraries.