the modern dance awareness society

dance dance everywhere

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eddy and doudou

eddy and doudou

passTRESpass has been a wonderful whirlwind, the marketplace as a space for exchange, learning and listening- I am still reeling from the experience. 


our cast grew immensely during our time together- each individual honing their offering until the final performance. their solos brought tears to my eyes. one of our Afghans originally needed to hide in the dark part of the room–he was so shy and suddenly in the performance it was like he was on fire, channeling his story- sharing his escape, expressing what he couldn’t express in words. another dancer- who danced during the Communist regime in Albania learned to improvise a duet with an amazing man from Senegal. each dancer found their way in the score and surprised us with their generosity and commitment. And now we wonder, what is next for them, will they get caught by the bureaucratic broom of the right wing?  Our mobility stands in contrast with their predicaments.

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performance in Athens


July 4 and 5 at 9pm  pre-show installation at 8:30

Kypseli Municipal Agora- Fokinionos Negri 42

entrance is free

This work will be performed in conjunction with the performance installation created by Aliki Germanou

                                                                                                                                                                                                “ fates”

performed by Niki Hatzivasiliathou, Maria Daskalaki and Efi Alevisou

and Dimitri Halazis’s  “Entaphsiasmos”

passTRESpass is

instigated by Despina Sophia Stamos in collaboration with Wen-shuan Yang, Panagiotis Andronikidis, Jill Woodward, Alice Klugherz and the performers: Lauretta Macauley, Marie Sankoh, Fatima Sankoh, Tapha Diaw, Doudou Gueye, Papa Loum, Kozeta Myzequari, Abdoul Houssain Nazari, Diarno Sanghott, Gloria Strutioth, Alphonso Thiaby, Eddy Waziri, Mirza Yousefi and the generous assistance of Konstantina Panagou, Dimitrios Chalatsis

music composed by Vassilis Mitropoulos

viola duet performed by Edward Malave and Lena Tsaklagkanou

sound collage created by Wen-Shuan Yang

video collage created by Jill Woodward

costumes and props Alice Klugherz

this project was conceived as a collaboration of many artists, activists and community members.

A purpose of the work is to pose questions regarding how we negotiate boundaries on the different levels; human relationships, physical space, and cultural practices. As we are confronted with each other’s cultures, how can we successfully co-exist and flourish? What do we carry with us? What do we leave behind and how does that effect our environment?

Enormous thanks to the Kypseli Market community, the African Womens’ Organization,  Eugenia Tzitzilaki, all the participating artists and all the generous donors who have made this show possible!



 Lauretta Macauley – Originally from Sierra Leone, Lauretta left her home and family in order to escape the conditions of deprivation that were present under the single party rule of Siaka Stevens. She has been living in Greece since 1982. Lauretta has worked for many years with elderly Greeks. In 2006 she co-founded the United African Women of Greece, an organization that fights for the rights of African immigrants.

Marie and Fatima Sankoh’s parents escaped conditions in Sierra Leone to provide a decent life for their children. Both girls were born in Athens and excel in school. Officially they are not citizens of Greece or Sierra Leone.

Tapha Diaw,  Doudou Gueye,  Papa Loum and Alphonso Thiaby are from Senegal. Doudou has observed that people from economically deprived countries are called immigrants whereas all others are considered tourists. Papa is in favor of a world with no borders and no papers. Alphonso has been sponsored by a Greek employer. He has lived in Athens for four years and speaks fluent Greek.

Abdoul Houssain Nazari and Mirza Yousefi are from Afganistan. As a child, Abdoul lost his mother when his house was bombed, escaped a massacre, and lived in Iran for 11 years. He’s been separated from his family since his escape . He and Mirza work hard in construction.

Kozeta Myzequari left Albania when the Iron Curtain collapsed, as her economic and social world crumbled. She has lived here for 19 years and her Greek is fluent.

 Diarno Sanghott is from Mauritania where about 20% of the population live on less than US$ 1.25 per day. He is interested in integrating into Greek society.

Gloria Strutioth was born here in Greece. Her family is from Albania. She and Marie Sankoh are best friends.

Eddy Waziri is from Tanzania. He believes in equal rights for all people.

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update from kipseli

this past week has been intense. we visited a building that these newly arrived immigrants are squating in omonia. the space is palatial but very smelly due to lack of bathroom facilities. the immigrants, from palastine and morocco showed us around. they are concerned because the police come in and cause all sorts of havoc, including taking all the immigrants valuables–money, cell phones, etc.

the immigrants situation was the topic of much discussion in the news. locals were complaining about the situation downtown and the government has responded by making an “operation broom” as they call it. they are arresting and detaining people regardless of their legality. there is talk of making a refugee/immigrant camp out of old army barracks. we are crossing our fingers that our friends have not been caught in the sweep.

the work of the men and women we have been working with has been about dehumanization and the lack of human rights that the new refugees suffer from. more news soon! we will upload more pics when we get to an internet cafe! xoxo hope all is well! d

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passTRESpass week 1

We spent our first week in Athens doing outreach to recruit performers for our project. We had already primed the pump before leaving New York but of course we have to make our case in person. We attended a meeting of the United African Women’s Organization and also connected with Konstantina who teaches Greek language to immigrants. Our first sessions with the immigrants and local artists start tonight. By the way, look for passTRESpass 2009 on Facebook.

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athens, july 2009

passTRESpass is an interactive, roving, movement installation that addresses migration, home and borders. What and where is home? Where do we feel safe?

A purpose of the work is to pose questions regarding how we negotiate boundaries on the different levels; human relationships, physical space, and cultural practices.Participants will explore movement vocabulary with an emphasis on excavating and physicalizing particular psycho-geographies – personal stories and communal histories. As we are confronted with each other’s cultures, how can we successfully co-exist and flourish? What do we carry with us? What do we leave behind and how does that effect our environment?

As kinetic organisms moving about on a planet shrinking from population density and technological advances, we are colliding faster and harder; realities intersecting, borders shift. As the ground shifts, how do we make sense of where the pieces fall? How do we choose to rearrange them?


We are interested in working with approximately 10-15 participants, preferably a diverse group of immigrants and locals who can commit to a two week rehearsal process – likely 4 3hr rehearsals a week — and one or two performances. This work will be performed in and around the Kipseli Market. A video of the work will be presented at the 23rd World Congress on Dance Research in Spain in mid July 2009. The performance will probably be on the weekend. We are thinking of this as an opportunity to broaden the dialogue by inviting a different audience to see the work and an opportunity to show and hear the real human stories behind the immigration statistics.

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Masquerade Ball

The modern dance awareness society will be performing through out the evening and into the New Year at the Rubulad Ball!

 Join Abigail Levine and myself in the starlit lounge tent as we find corners waiting for dances.


Last chance to dance!

Rubulad presents:

The End of an Error – A New Year’s Masquerade Ball

 Ring out the old… ring in the new!

 Weds. Dec 31st

live bands: Flaming Fire I Love You Airlines The Creaky Boards with your DJ / Soundman Cody

DJs: DJ Shakey Pork Chop Mike Simonetti

Special surprise DJs brought to you by $mall ¢hange

 in the Cabaret Room:

Anna Copacabana Viva, Mary Feaster and Friends Jessica Delfino with your DJ / Soundman Greything

 in the Starlight Lounge

G. Scopitronic’s Non-Stop Film Fest

Modern Dance Awareness Society

Yummy Dub Pies and hot cider

Doors 10:00 pm; show 11:00 pm

20 beans for Dressy Bessies and Masked Marvels –

Thirty beans if you can’t even be bothered to dress up at all on New Year’s Eve!

10:00 pm doors; 11:00 pm show

20 beans before 11:00, in costume, or way late; 30 otherwise.


Rubulad Home Base: 338 Flushing Ave., bet. Classon & Taaffee 
L train to Bedford Avenue> B61 bus on Driggs to Flushing Ave (10 
mins)> left under BQE> Rubulad’s on your right just past the gas 
station *OR* J / M / Z to Marcy Ave> walk along BQE> left under BQE 
at Flushing. 

Or G Train to Classon, walk on Classon to Flushing 

Note: The B61 bus runs from Greenpoint to Red Hook through Dumbo and Downtown Brooklyn. The B57 bus will take you to and from Bushwick, fast. 

You can help us continue to have a Rubulad in this space by being quiet coming and going, staying inside the space during the event and not pissing all over the sidewalk as soon as you get around the corner – which, incidentally, does attract the police and they will write you a summons. 

The less our neighbors have to complain about, the more fun we can have. 

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costumed inspiration


Despina Stamos and  Jill Woodward 

 performing “dress-up dances”
 at excellent young designers sale Thursday Dec.18th
 See dance in the market as you shop for your holiday gifts!

Lamia‘s Design Loft
 20 East 31st St. (between Madison and Fifth Ave)

 Indie Designers Holiday Sale and Party

 Private Shopping Event with free wine, treats, dance and music! 

Exclusive one-of-a-kind items from various designers: Handbags, Gloves,
 Clothes, Jewelry, T-Shirts and other great handmade boutique items.
Great prices, beautiful quality, and most of all you will have fun!
Amazing original (and affordable) gifts!


Sohung Designs

and more…

Thursday, December 18, 6 p.m until the last guest goes-:)
Lamia‘s Design Loft
 20 East 31st St. (between Madison and Fifth Ave)

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TRESpass product and thoughts




we land in the production zone. 11/11 is my first leap in. it is armistice day, unfortunately, a yearly ritual on my part–when will we lay down arms? warm arms that hold, support–steel extensions for killing. when did we forget that there was a war to end all wars? when armistice turned to veterans? 

we used the arms today

many 4 fingered arms (made in the vicintity)

1 rifle from wwI or 3/4th and 1/4

3 crime scene outlines

lots of tape and bandage guaze

4 channels moving

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  Despina Stamos, Storme Sundberg, Andrew Suseno and Scott Lyons
7:30 Monday eve.
11 am , 1:30 pm  Tuesday
11 am  1:30pm Wednesday
7:30 Thursday eve. 10 am Friday
at Chashama window space 
266 w 37th st.
TRESpass is provoked by current global border disputes and the study of proxemics. Proxemics is a term coined by Edward T. Hall in 1966 for the inter-related observations and theories of spatial use. Curiousity is an investment that drives us beyond the familiar: familiar ideas, familiar relationships, familiar bodies and a familiar world. But as we all increasingly know, more of the same will not work, we need change. TRESpass is an offering to invest in change in ourselves in the way we perceive, participate and ask questions. Audience members, passerbyers and dancers will engage in a new kind of dialogue integrating language, movement and genuine intention.