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a work by Gabriel Mata and Gary Champi

music composition by Michael Wall

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Off White builds from a dance film collaboration between Gabriel Mata and Gary Champi titled Fading Fade Out. The redevelopment of film into concert performance heightens the research and exploration of the navigation of brown and queer bodies in predominantly white dance spaces. Through movement from trained techniques and the inquiry of a process of undoing white influence, the work traverses the space of honoring, interrogating, and restructuring.

The process of undoing and restructuring how our bodies have been informed makes up a part of the forefront of social activism and critical discussions for marginalized communities. This work leads to discovering agency over our narrative and movement while grappling with the disparity of access in dance for bodies of color.

Through process and performance, the work paves a conscious path towards evaluating and developing the engagement of participation with techniques. Not bound by notions of proscenium performance, a contemporary approach to creating the work will offer an array of access into thinking, viewing, and examining the moving body.

In awareness of the disparity of access, the work aims to have an egalitarian approach with an emphasis on communities of color. It is a space that acknowledges the lack of engagement for marginalized and possible audiences from what is seen as “high-art.” Presenting the work in a series of festivals, academic institutions, lecture demonstrations, and in touring will offer the engagement to local and national audiences. The space for critical discussions on academic settings is part of the range, as it has been those higher education settings that continue the practices of rigid teaching of techniques.

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