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Stephen Petronio Company Announces VIRTUAL BLOODLINES FESTIVAL, Oct 23 - Nov 12

Stephen Petronio Company Announces VIRTUAL BLOODLINES FESTIVAL, Oct 23 - Nov 12


Stephen Petronio Company




Friday, October 23, 2020 - 7:00pm
Friday, October 30, 2020 - 7:00pm
Friday, November 6, 2020 - 7:00pm



Stephen Petronio Company


Festival Celebrates Work of Postmodern Dance Masters Trisha Brown, Merce Cunningham, Anna Halprin, Steve Paxton, Rudy Perez, and Yvonne Rainer


Stephen Petronio Company is proud to announce the Virtual Bloodlines Festival, a three week long digital happening showcasing the work of postmodern dance masters Trisha Brown, Merce Cunningham, Anna Halprin, Steve Paxton, Rudy Perez, and Yvonne Rainer. Running October 23 –November 12, 2020, the online festival will feature screenings of work from Stephen Petronio Company’s Bloodlines, which began in 2015 and has since restaged 11 iconic dances. These masterpieces have irrevocably marked the American postmodern dance landscape and have had a particular impact on Petronio’s own thinking. The screenings will be coupled with interviews and insightful dialogues with guests Davalois Fearon, Deborah Jowitt, Wendy Perron, Yvonne Rainer, and dancers who have embodied these restagings.

The festival opens on October 23 at 7pm with a program dedicated to the work of Yvonne Rainer and Steve Paxton and will include Rainers’s Diagonal (1963), Trio A with Flags (1966/1970), and Chair Pillow (1969), in addition to Paxton’s Jag Vill Gärna Telefonera (1964/1982). A conversation between Deborah Jowitt, Yvonne Rainer, and Stephen Petronio will complete the program.

The work of Trisha Brown and Merce Cunningham are the focus of the October 30 at 7pm program which includes Brown’s Glacial Decoy (1979) and Cunningham’s RainForest (1968). Following the screening, Wendy Perron, Davalois Fearon,  and Stephen Petronio will discuss the works.

The third and final week of the Virtual Bloodlines Festival begins on November 6 at 7pm and features Rudy Perez’s Coverage Revisited (1970) along with Anna Halprin’s Courtesan and the Crone (1999). Wendy Perron will again join Stephen Petronio in conversation.

Following each premiere, the video will remain online for one week only. Archives related to the original works and Petronio performances will be available four days in advance of each video premiere and can be found at http://petron.io/blf for the duration of the festival.

Stephen Petronio Company Education Director, Tess Montoya, will also lead a session of master classes, one each week of the festival, focusing on Steve Paxton’s Jag Vill Gärna Telefonera involving improvisational techniques that culminate in a solo creation. 

“Having these masterpieces as part of the repertory of Stephen Petronio Company is an honor and responsibility that I hold dear,” says Stephen Petronio. “My hope is that the Virtual Bloodlines Festival brings new audiences to a group of choreographers that run through my DNA. Their artistry continues to speak boldly to the present moment.”

While the Virtual Bloodlines Festival is open to everyone, advance registration is required and donations are encouraged. Sponsorship levels will give viewers access to additional exclusive content. Please visit http://petron.io/blf for more information.



October 23 at 7pm

Diagonal (1963), Trio A with Flags (1966/1970), and Chair Pillow (1969)
Choreography by Yvonne Rainer

Rainer’s rarely performed Diagonal (1963) features six dancers enacting a playful improvisational score in ever-changing groupings. Trio A with Flags (1966/1970) is performed once silently by three dancers in the nude, with an American flag tied around their necks, and then performed again by four fully clothed dancers to the music of the Chambers Brothers. Chair-Pillow (1969) is set to music by Ike and Tina Turner.


Jag Vill Gärna Telefonera (1964/1982)

Score: Steve Paxton 
Created and performed in 1982 by Stephen Petronio and Randy Warshaw

Paxton’s Jag Vill Gärna Telefonera (I Would Like to Make a Phone Call) was first performed as a duet by Paxton and Robert Rauschenberg in 1964 and was restaged and performed by Stephen Petronio and Randy Warshaw in 1982 on a program of Judson-era reconstructions and Danspace Project is located at St. Mark's Church in-the-Bowery.

A conversation between Deborah Jowitt, Yvonne Rainer, and Stephen Petronio will close the program.


October 30 at 7pm


RainForest (1968) 
Choreography by Merce Cunningham

Merce Cunningham’s RainForest is a spare and bracing foray into animal abstract motion and sound, set loose amidst a world of floating silver pillows. The title came from Cunningham’s childhood memories of the Northwest, and the rainforest in the Olympic Peninsula. RainForest differed from Cunningham’s other pieces in that, with the exception of Cunningham, each of the six dancers performed his or her role, then left the stage and never returned. Andy Warhol agreed to let Cunningham use his installation Silver Clouds--a number of Mylar pillows filled with helium, so that they floated freely in the air. The music was by David Tudor and evoked the chirping and chattering of birds and animals.


Glacial Decoy (1979)

Choreography by Trisha Brown

Glacial Decoy was Trisha Brown’s first work for the proscenium stage. This dance for five women uses the edges of the stage to magnify the reach of dance beyond its frame. It features an iconic visual design of projected images depicting classic Americana, along with billowing white costumes, both by Robert Rauschenberg. Glacial Decoy is especially significant for Stephen Petronio as it was created the same year he joined Brown’s company, with which he danced from 1979 to 1986. He credits the work’s formal rigor and continuous flow of movement as leaving an indelible impression on his evolving aesthetic.

A conversation between Wendy Perron, Davalois Fearon, and Stephen Petronio will close the program.


November 6 at 7pm


Coverage Revisited (1970)

Choreography by Rudy Perez

In this 17-minute auto-biographical solo by Perez, a male figure delineates the space, and re-visits his whole life with a montage of movement, imagery, and sound. The score for this personal and political work was created by Perez, sampling sounds, text, and music.

Courtesan and the Crone (1999)

Choreography by Anna Halprin

A solo of seduction, gender, and aging performed by Stephen Petronio himself and first danced by Halprin at age 79.


A conversation between Wendy Perron and Stephen Petronio will close the program.

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