Monster Mourning will be presented at Kestrels, 200 Sixth Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215 on Sunday, January 14, 2024 at 3pm, followed by a reception. There will be additional performances on Friday, January 19 and Saturday, January 20, 2024 at 7:30pm. Sliding scale tickets start at $15 and can be purchased online at https://www.tickettailor.com/events/kestrels/1073618#.
With kinetic dancing, stories and songs, Weena and Katie traverse the long tethers of time through shaken-up fantasy worlds, characters built from their lacking and over-ing, and through the filtered groundwater of their kinship of the last 25 years. As they tend to their home of friendship, they concoct forgotten tales of vaguely euro-lineages and fables into a disjointed present. They navigate connection steeped in inherited competitions and codes of femaleness. They time-travel their own ages and bodies through their love language of hair-braiding and awkward clog dancing. With wit and pathos Weena and Katie seek to understand and pierce through the expected complacencies of modern adult, female corporeality. Monster Mourning includes live music by the multi-talented musician and composer Annie Hart. In addition to original record music She plays live and manipulates sound on a multitude of instruments including a vibraphone, keyboard, melodica, various homemade instruments.
In describing Monster Mourning, the artists shared, “As middle-aged white women we held an unacknowledged anxiety about how to take up up space in our art making. Leading with this, instead of ignoring who was making the work, this piece began with it. Monster Mourning shouts of an unabashedly, uncompromisingly female world. The joy, humor and love we create between us as two old friends, the channeling of girlhoods, shapeshifting our bodies as places of desire, labor, joy, and wild entertainment all work as the top notes. We also felt it was imperative to make work that does not only examine our womanhood, but considers the multiplicities of our identities: gender, race, class, heritage, and the monstrous power-grabbing legacies and actualities that are within us as well. This piece is a container for our dualities, our contradictions of character, identities and self. Monster Mourning invites a viewer into a place of ease and pleasure, then pulls the rug out from under all of us. There are monsters in here too. They live in us, the two of us and the collective us.”
Weena Pauly and Katie Workum, performers and creators
Weena and Katie met in NYC in 1999, circling each other’s lives with an increasingly magnetic bond through classes, neighborhoods, and stages. Within that two decade span, Katie taught Weena how to sing in harmony to perform together in Young Jean Lee’s “Church.” Weena helped Katie with a STREB audition (Weena got it, Katie broke her wrist.) Katie choreographed shows and earned her Masters in Dance Education at NYU Steinhardt. Weena developed her somatic therapy practice as a yoga therapist, movement teacher and Somatic Experiencing trauma resolution practitioner. Katie taught at Gibney, Barnard College, NYU Experimental Theater Wing, and Lehman College. Weena danced with Brian Brooks Moving Company, David Neumann/Advanced Beginner Group and eventually with Katie in her evening-length, “Fruitlands” at The Chocolate Factory. In 2012 Weena and Katie began their current research into Authentic Movement and improvisation from which Weena created her current body of work, SE+AM. They’ve created work for Mount Tremper Arts, Mass MOCA, Danspace Project, BKSD, Foley Gallery. They’ve been interwoven in each other’s lives and families for 25 years, and forged a collaborative model founded on inclusivity of their wholeness. They’ve made over 857 dances, reckoning with who and how they are, with laughter, care and reverence for what makes them come to life.
Annie Hart, composer and musician
Annie Hart is a New York City-based composer, songwriter, and performer. She made her name with David Lynch favorites and Twin Peaks alums, synth trio Au Revoir Simone, and has since branched into a swift-moving solo career. Between 2017 and 2022, she released three critically-acclaimed solo albums and completed several world tours. Her minimal pop songs explore the fringes of new wave, pop, and ambient music; and have been called “sumptuous synth-pop’ by Vogue. Her reputation as a unique master of composition on analog synthesizers has led her to compose the score for two feature films released in 2020: Olympic Dreams (IFC) and Banana Split (Universal). She scored 3 short films in 2022 and is currently scoring the short Aphasia as part of the prestigious ASCAP/Columbia University Film Scoring Workshop. Annie continues to break boundaries by composing music for patient listeners in her own distinctive self-taught style. 2023 will see the release of several projects, including performances of a string quartet and a solo pop record entitled The Weight of A Wave.
Katie Workum, individual past credits
Lauded by Brian Seibert of The New York Times as “thrilling and rare,” Katie Workum began making dances in New York City in 1997. She has been presented by Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) with Jacob’s Pillow Dance, Danspace Project, Mount Tremper Arts, The Chocolate Factory, PS122’s Catch/Coil, Gibney In the Works/American Realness, Brooklyn Studios for Dance, The Wassaic Project Summer Festival, Movement Research/Judson Church, Dance Theater Workshop, Philadelphia Fringe Festival, The Kitchen, Movement Research at Judson Church, Dance New Amsterdam, 92nd St Y, Symphony Space, Galapagos Art Space, GAle GAtes, et. al., WAX, and others. She has been an Artist in Residence at MASS MoC , Chez Bushwick, Dance New Amsterdam, Mount Tremper Arts, Tribeca Performing Arts Center, and The Kitchen. As a performer she has worked with David Thomson, Ivy Baldwin, Young Jean Lee, David Nuemann, Stacy Dawson and others.
Weena Pauly, individual past credits
Weena Pauly-Tarr has been a company member of STREB, Brian Brooks Moving Company, David Neumann/Advanced Beginner Group, Young Jean Lee’s Theater Company and most recently with Katie Workum. She co-founded the Authentic Movement collective, Duvet, where eight movement artists explore performance and radical culture development using an Authentic Movement practice and offer improvisational performances, events and classes. Weena has been trained as a teacher in various movement modalities (Yoga, Mindfulness Meditation, Pilates, Functional Strength, SE) and is currently working as a C-IAYT Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapist and a Somatic Experiencing practitioner. Weena most recently created SE+AM, group work which explores the synergy of Somatic Experiencing and Authentic Movement. She lives in NYC with her husband, four kids.