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Michelle Tabnick
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Abrons Arts Center at Henry Street Settlement
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Racoco Productions presents the World Premiere of TILT, March 29 - April 6

by Michelle Tabnick
February 11, 2019
Abrons Arts Center at Henry Street Settlement
Harry du Jur Playhouse
466 Grand Street
New York, NY 10002
Racoco Productions presents the World Premiere of TILT at Abrons Arts Center, 466 Grand Street, NYC, 10002 from March 29 - April 6, 2019. Performances: Tuesdays-Saturdays at 7:30pm and Sundays at 2:30pm. Tickets are $30 general admission, $20 youth ($25/$15 if purchased by March 25), and are available at www.abronsartscenter.org

Imagine your head is a pinball machine. But who's playing? 

TILT is a live performance/construction site swirling movement, wood, live music, tap dance, pinball, and the story of Don Quixote into a visceral experience of a delusional brain. 

Choreographed by Rachel Cohen with music by Lynn Wright, TILT features tap dancer Heather Cornell, with performers Rachel Cohen, Toby Billowitz, Remi Harris, Masumi Kishimoto, and Meghan Schardt. Sets created with Bill Kennedy. Costume design by OLEK. Lighting design by Jon Harper. Lynn Wright, composer, guitar; Eric Eble, double bass; Nikki D'Agostino, bass clarinet, bass and alto sax; Eric Hoegemeyer Ableton, percussion. 

A show-specific installation will be open in the lobby gallery during Abrons business hours (10am - 10pm) featuring an interactive pre-show experience that will begin 45 minutes before curtain. Follow Racoco's journey in the making of TILT, build your own "throne," and play pinball! Appropriate for ages 6 and up.

TILT is the final chapter of a multi-year project that began with a commission by Women in Motion. It was created in part through The Field's Artist Residency program, supported by the Tides Foundation, and residencies at CAVE in Brooklyn and Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore. Thank you to Materials for the Arts, the Depts. of Cultural Affairs, Sanitation, and Education. The first chapter, "I would," was made possible, in part, by The Field's 2012-13 Field Dance Fund, supported by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and Mertz Gilmore Foundation. The second chapter, "Construct," was presented in association with Incubator Arts Project in its New Performance Series and supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. 

Racoco Productions are fantastic excavations of everyday things. We combine quixotic choreography, absurdist visuals, and raw materials to create theatrical worlds in which movement, music, humor, emotion, and texture are inextricably linked. The body and everyday objects are compared, contrasted, blended, and confused to illustrate the inescapable messiness of existence. 


Rachel Cohen is a choreographer and performer based in New York City. She studied choreography with mentor Claire Mallardi at Harvard University, and in New York studied dance with Mary Anthony, Bertram Ross, and Carolyn Lord, and mask and clown with Rafael Bianciotto and Mario Gonzales. She is a certified teacher of Action Theater improvisation, which she has studied with its creator, Ruth Zaporah. Rachel founded Racoco Productions in 2003. Her "If The Shoe Fits," created with visual artist Olek and composer Chris Becker, was named one of The New York Times' top NYC dance performances of 2005. The company has performed in the US, Czech Republic, England, France, Poland, and India. Ms. Cohen has been artist in residence at Harvard University; Santa Fe Arts Institute; Galapagos Art Space and Cave in Brooklyn, NY; Mix-Arte Myrys in Toulouse, France; and The Sanskriti Foundation in Delhi, India, and has been awarded grants from the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation US Arts International, Meet the Composer/Creative Connections and Live Music for Dance/American Music Center, NYFA, the Field Dance Fund, The Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Fund, and NYC Department of Cultural Affairs.

Heather Cornell creates visual music ensembles where she functions as the percussionist.  As artistic director for Manhattan Tap, one of the busiest music/dance companies in the world in the 80's and 90's, she is known as a mover and shaker of the tap dance renaissance.  She has toured worldwide with her shows "Finding Synesthesia", "CanTap" and "Conversations" and as a soloist.  She was recently commissioned to create an evening for the Distinguished Artist Series at Bergen Community College. She is co-director of "Walk to the Beat" and co-founder of Making Music Dance, a tap, flamenco and world music ensemble, releasing their first CD this spring. A pioneer of concert tap and of working with world music, Heather trained directly with the first generation tap masters, and has taught and inspired three generations of tap dancers, musicians and actors internationally. Called "the Oscar Peterson of hoofing" (Globe and Maill), she was the sole tap dancer mentored by the infamous bassist, Ray Brown.  TapMotif in Lefkada, Greece was her laboratory for 8 seasons, where she trained freethinking "bilingual" artists in music and dance.  This year she celebrates the 25th Anniversary of her NYC Rhythm Tap Intensive with live music. Her TV, radio and film credits include:  "Thinking on Their Feet, Women of the Tap Renaissance" (Jenai Cutcher), "Gotta Move, Women in Tap" (Lynn Daly), ""KQED special with Honi Coles and the Jazz Tap Ensemble; "Gregory Hines' Tap Dance in America" for PBS; featured MT special on "Sounds Impressive"; and, WYNC's live radio show, "Around New York" for 5 years.  She choreographed "The Play What I Wrote" for Broadway and "Three Penny Opera" for Atalaya in Sevilla, Spain.  She is the recipient of numerous awards for her excellence in tap dance and in leading the international tap community. 

Lynn Wright is composer, producer, and multi-instrumentalist based in Brooklyn. His music incorporates free improvisation, musique concrète, lyrical songwriting, and jazz-infused scores. His work for film and television has appeared on the BBC, PBS, Netlfix, and ABC, and at Sundance, Cannes, The Venice Film Festival, Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and the Berlin Film Festival. He has performed or collaborated with Algis Kizys, Victoria Miguel, Christiane Hommelsheim, Andrea Belfi, Chris Becker, Helga Davis, Lewis Barnes, Norman Westberg, Laura Ortman, Raphaele Shirley, and Alexander Hacke, among others. His most recent work is This Is Where, an improvised dark-ambient collaboration with Norman Westberg and Algis Kizys.

OLEK's art pushes the boundaries of fashion, art, crafts, and public art, fluidly combining the sculptural and the fanciful with the old-fashioned technique of crocheting. An active supporter of women's rights, sexual equality, and freedom of expression, OLEK has traveled the globe for their community-based projects; Love Across the USA is a series of public murals depicting inspiring women from history. OLEK's sculptures and performances have been exhibited worldwide, including Art Basel and Wynwood Walls in Miami, the Brooklyn Museum in NY, and The Smithsonian in Washington DC. Their work is in the permanent collections at URBAN NATION Museum for Contemporary Urban Art in Berlin, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam, the Avesta Art Museum in Avesta, Sweden, and the New York Historical Society, and several private collections, including those of Antonio Banderas and Mike D from the Beastie Boys. OLEK's work has been covered in numerous publications, including the Smithsonian Magazine, Creators (VICE), the Huffington Post, The New Yorker, and New York Magazine. OLEK has been named one of the top artist Instagram accounts to follow by Christie's and Art Net, and Artsy name them as an artist giving knitting a place in art history. OLEK currently lives and works in Brooklyn.

Toby Billowitz has danced with many choreographers and companies, including Jordan Fuchs, Artichoke Dance, Freefall, Jill Sigman/thinkdance, and Ben Munisteri. He has puppeteered at drag shows, NYC Halloween parades, at BAM and around the country with Phantom Limb, and on Broadway in War Horse. In addition to dance, he has taught gymnastics and trampoline to children and adults, social dance to teens, movement to senior citizens, and puppetry to children in the Dominican Republic in an area so rural they were neither familiar with the word for puppet nor the concept. He has enjoyed involvement in several Racoco projects since 2015.

Remi Harris is a Brooklyn based performer, curator, producer, and choreographer whose work explores the intersectionality between dance, new media, and female representation. In addition to performing with Racoco, she works on her own creative projects under her choreographic venture dancesbyremi. Her stage work has been presented at Abrons Art Center, Brooklyn Studios for Dance, Danspace Project, Teatro La Tea, Triskelion Arts, The Actors Fund Theater, The Brick Theater, and several site-specific areas in NYC. She was previously the Education Coordinator for Ballet Hispanico and the Co-Director of Brooklyn Studios for Dance and advocates for dance as a member of several dance collectives including the Artists of Color Council. Her first short dance film "to be:free" has been featured in several film festivals including the 2018 Cucalorus Film Festival. 

Masumi Kishimoto is a native of Tokyo, Japan, who studied dance in Japan and the U.S. She also studied Physical Comedy under the direction of Gregg Goldston and was a featured member of Goldston Mime Company. She has choreographed pieces that combine Mime / Physical Comedy and Dance for performances at the Puffin Room, Movement Research at Judson Church, Studio b.p.m., Theater for the New City, The Ailey Studio Theater and La MaMa. As a dancer, she worked with various choreographers such as Yana Schnitzler, Daria Fain, Ayako Kurakake, Asami Morita in NY, Pennsylvania, Germany and Japan?. She has been a member of Racoco Productions since 2010. Ms. Kishimoto is a nationally certified teacher of the Alexander Technique, AmSAT, ACAT. She has been teaching at Orthopedic Movement Physical Therapy for people who want to know how you move such as dancers, singers, actors.  http://masumikishimoto.com/home

Meghan Schardt is a graduate of New World School of The Arts. Her credits include work with Miami Repertoire Ballet Company, Memento, Octavia Cup, Hawaii Ballet Theatre, Bryon Carr Dance, Jenn Sims (Biennale Venice, Art Basel film project), Becky Radway Dance Production, Nancy Whyte and Yuka Kawazus's Danse En L'Air.

Jon Harper is a lighting designer and arts administrator. Prior design work includes Abby Z and the New Utility, Brian Rogers, Mariangela Lopez, Dylan Crossman Dans(c)e, Racoco Productions, WELOVEYOUONEOFUS, Sean Irons and Lauren Petty.  He also has served as lighting supervisor for Pilobolus, Cedar Lake, and Aspen Santa Fe Ballet.  He has been at Abrons Arts Center for six years in charge of the Production department, and has recently taken on a broader role as the Director of Operations.

An award-winning "wildly creative" composer, musician, conductor, educator, and multi-disciplinary artist, Nikki D'Agostino has both performed and had her works performed nationally and internationally. She received her B.A. from The University of North Texas in 2004 after studying with Joseph Klein, Phil Winsor, and Joseph "Butch" Rovan, before pursuing her M.M. in Music Composition (2008) at CUNY Brooklyn College to study with Amnon Wolman and George Brunner. As an educator, Ms. D'Agostino has given lectures on topics ranging from musicology to performance practice as well as holding a position as an Adjunct Professor at CUNY New York City College of Technology in the Emerging Media program. Compositionally, Nikki is currently focused on publishing a book of scores and recording an album of works using a notation system she developed to allow both performer and composer/conductor creative control. As a "beautifully brash" saxophonist, synthesizer enthusiast, and sound artist, Nikki performs actively in the NYC music scene in several groups ranging in style from indie pop to harsh noise.

Eric Hoegemeyer is a composer and producer originally from Detroit, now residing between New York City and Bogotá. He has released music under the names Deep See Sound System, Giant Brain, and Tree Laboratory. He has collaborated with Patti Smith, Tom Verlaine, Kevin Saunderson, Hundred Waters, H09909, and Dennis Coffey. In 2013 he scored 14 short films for filmmaker Steven Sebring's "Revolution" installation at the 69th Division Armory. In 2014 he directed and scored a short film collaboration with Patti Smith entitled "The Good Gray Poet" on installation with MOMA PS-1. His 2016 album "Secret Agent Volume 1" was released on cassette by Brooklyn-based label Personal Affair. In 2017 he remixed Sun Ra's Heliocentric Worlds as a part of a compilation also released on Personal Affair. His forthcoming album "Somnambulist Soundtracks" will be released in May of 2019.  He has performed original compositions at Carnegie Hall, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Rubin Museum of Art, MOMA PS-1 Rockaway and The Detroit Science Center.

Eric Eble is a longstanding, NYC-based electric and upright bass player. For the last two decades he has been a main contributor and band-member with the likes of the Reid Paley Trio, Reid Paley/Black Francis, Cordero, and The Heroine Sheiks, with all of whom he has toured extensively throughout North America and Europe. Currently he plays bass with And The Wiremen.

TILT, presented by Racoco Productions, will be performed at the Abrons Arts Center as part of the @AbronsSeries, a subsidized performance space rental program. 

Abrons Arts Center is a home for contemporary interdisciplinary arts in Manhattan's Lower East Side neighborhood. A core program of the Henry Street Settlement, Abrons believes that access to the arts is essential to a free and healthy society. Through performance presentations, exhibitions, education programs and residencies, Abrons mobilizes communities with the transformative power of art.

Abrons Arts Center values freedom of expression and creativity, ever striving to provide creative communities with a space that celebrates diversity of thought and experience. Abrons aims to be an anti-oppressive home to people from all backgrounds and does not discriminate on the basis of race, national or ethnic origin, citizen status, ancestry, age, religion, disability, sex or gender identity. As definitions of expression and inclusion evolve, Abrons is committed to continually revising this statement in collaboration with our communities. www.abronsartscenter.org
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