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SHORE: Dance, Feast, Tell, Heal

By Susannah Black
March 12, 2015

This April, join dancers, storytellers, cooks (and eaters) and others in a multi-day performance installation at various locations around Lenapehoking Harbor.

Where?  That’s New York Harbor: Lenapehoking is the Native name for the area that’s now New York City, and Emily Johnson of Catalyst Dance is bringing her experiential art/food/social action installation SHORE here.


As part of this piece, on Friday, April 24th, from 11-4:30, a group of volunteers/audience members/participants will be helping out with an afternoon’s oyster restoration work on Governors Island: they’ll get their hands dirty, get an introduction to the BOP, and learn about the Harbor’s history and future as an ecosystem supporting its local population.


SHORE, which premiered in Minneapolis last year, has four elements, which take place on different days: a dance performance; a storytelling session; days of community action; and a potluck feast.  While some of the elements of the piece will remain from the Minneapolis production, Emily and her collaborators are reinventing the other elements to reflect Lenapehoking’s local history and to celebrate its Native culture, as well as our current efforts to restore the rich ecological heritage of the Harbor. This is place-based participatory performance art, and it’s not clear– and isn’t meant to be clear– where the art ends and the community action and the feasting begin.


Complete information follows.

SHORE is a multi-day performance installation of dance, story, volunteerism, and feasting. It is a celebration of the places where we meet and merge – land and water, performer and audience, art and community, past, present, future.

Sunday April 19, 11-3

Meet at Firehouse 59
58-03 Rockaway Beach Blvd, Rockaway, NY 11692
(Beach 60 St. off the A train)
Free, Please Register
Join us for dune restoration planting project in the Rockaways. This day of community action is designed with the help of an inspiring group of teenagers from the Rockaways who love where they live and want to lead us in a caretaking of this land and water. Come to the shore, get your hands in the sand!

SHORE: STORY (a curated reading) in LES
Sunday April 19, 6-7:30

At Two Bridges Neighborhood Council, in the Goldie Chu Community Room
82 Rutgers Slip, 2nd Floor
Free, Please RSVP
Local authors share stories by, about, and for Lenapehoking.
Curated by Emily Johnson. Artists TBA.
(The call is out now – if you want to submit: info here).
Reception to follow, offered by Two Bridges.

Thurs – Sat April 23, 24, 25, 7:30

At New York Live Arts
**Performance begins outside at PS11, 320 W. 21st. St., NY 10011**
Rain or Shine.
Tickets here
We’ll begin on the playground at PS11 then walk together to the theater at New York Live Arts where SHORE: PERFORMANCE continues – featuring Aretha Aoki, Emily Johnson, Krista Langberg, Nona Marie Invie, Julia Bither, The SHORE Choir, and a large local cast of dancers. Directed by Ain Gordon. Music composed by James Everest and Nona Invie with Fletcher Barnhill.

Friday April 24, 11 – 4:30

 Meet at 10:45 am for the Ferry at 10 South St. / Maritime Building
Free, Please Register
**(limited to 30 participants)**
Help restore the estuary that is New York Harbour by joining the effort to reintroduce oysters, an indigenous species of Lenapehoking. This day of community action includes cleaning oyster shells, working on boats, learning something about oyster sex,  getting an introduction to New York Harbor School’s Billion Oyster Project (whose goal is to reintroduce 1 billion oysters into the bay by 2030). Be a part of our healthy ecosystem. And yes!, we’ll bring in some oysters for us to eat, too.

SHORE: FEAST on Newtown Creek in Greenpoint
Sunday April 26, 2 – 6

At North Brooklyn Boat Club
49 Ash St. at McGuinness Blvd, Brooklyn, NY
Under the Pulaski Bridge, on Newtown Creek
**outdoor event so dress for the weather**
Free, Registration Necessary
Gather with us for a celebratory potluck feast! I cannot wait for this part – a day to enjoy time and food, to canoe on Newtown Creek, hear songs sung by Ben Weaver, (and maybe, possibly, eat some more oysters!). Yes!, please bring a dish to share that is meaningful to you, the story behind it, and the recipe. We want to hear those stories, we want to taste those dishes, we want to share those recipes. The collected stories, photos, recipes from the week will be compiled in our SHORE Zine, Vol. 5 and mailed to all feast participants. Feast is going to be amazing. It’s also a ZERO WASTE EVENT, so bring your dishes, forks, and spoons!