Snow date Friday, February 16, 2024 from 7 to 9pm
Intended for audiences age 16+ and adults, all levels of experience including none
NYC transplant and WWAC Teaching Artist, Shira Gregory intends to bring the beautiful practice of pressure free dance to our community with DANCING IN THE DARK. Dance is therapy, dance is cleansing, and dance ultimately, is for everybody and every body.
What is it? Dancing In The Dark is a one-of-a-kind dance experience designed to eliminate the barriers of self-consciousness and social judgment. The dance party takes place in a dark, dimly lit room, and is an exclusively chat and socialization-free zone. Participants are welcome to socialize outside the dance room, but once you’re on the dance floor, it’s dance time only! The combination of the darkness and removal of any pressure to socialize frees participants to fully immerse themselves in the joy of their body’s movement to the beat. There’s no set choreography or steps to follow; participants are encouraged to dance in any style or form that the music inspires within them. We will ensure that folks are given enough personal space to be able to express themselves freely and safely, and after the first ten minutes, your eyes will adjust to the dimly lit environment comfortably. The aim is to create an inclusive, safe, and liberating environment where participants can fully express themselves through the art of dance, unburdened by the discomfort of being perceived while getting their groove on.
Who should attend? Dancing in the Dark is designed for anyone who wishes to move their body to the music, regardless of any background in dance or movement. All levels of experience are welcome, novices included!
What should I bring? Yourself, a bottle of water, and comfortable clothes to dance in (sneakers are encouraged). Folks with sensitive hearing should bring whatever ear protection they might wear to a concert.
What kind of music will it be? We’ll be dancing to an eclectic mix of old and new tunes, designed to keep you on your toes. After the last dance song plays, there will be a slower track to encourage folks to warm down and stretch before heading out.
Host Shira Gregory: Shira states, “When I first started attending this practice in NYC, it was because I wanted somewhere where I could try to feel less self conscious when I moved my body, and where I could wear sneakers instead of heels and no one would look at me funny. Dancing in the dark was structureless, the music was danceable and fantastic, and most importantly: the near total darkness facilitated safety around my self consciousness. I sometimes darted my eyes around the room…some were looking at their feet, shuffling slowly, clearly at odds with their own self consciousness issues, others were dancing “badly” and boldly–I was clearly in excellent company. It wasn’t long before I was counting down the days to sweat to the beat each week, and before I knew it, at a $5 donation I was calling it “the cheapest, best therapy in New York City,” and I wasn’t being hyperbolic: After years of internalized bodily trauma, this was starting to heal me in ways that I never expected. I felt more alive and whole in that room than I had in a long time. I miss this practice badly, and I miss the kind of people who were drawn to it. My hope is to attract anyone who has ever wanted to dance but felt entirely too self conscious to try, or anyone who wants a safe, fun atmosphere to move and dance in. This transformed my self esteem and confidence, and my hope is to both bring this to the community, but to build community around it as well.”
What to expect: The room is dark and the rules are simple: No talking, no circle-forming, no wall-flowering (as in, no stepping off the dance floor to watch others). Brief water breaks are allowed, but then you jump back in: Outside the room it’s cool to talk and hang out but if you’re in the dance room, you’re there to dance! In a dimly lit setting, individuals have the opportunity to embrace uninhibited expression in a friendly, non-threatening atmosphere. Participants can dance without concern for appearances, completely losing themselves in the music. Dancing in the Dark celebrates the sheer joy of dancing without an audience, making it a unique and liberating experience for everyone involved.
We hope you’ll join us for this fun night of letting loose!
Read our news article for more details on this event
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