“The dance is an emotional release, and, in the best performers you can see anger, frustration, and other feelings transmuted into joyful artistic expression. Flex flits between the earthly and the ethereal…” (Hyperallergic)
‘Flex’ is one of the world’s newest dance forms.
In FLEXN, Reggie (Regg Roc) Gray, one of the flex pioneers, and Peter Sellars, perhaps America’s greatest living theatre and opera director, team up with a community of flex dancers from the very neighbourhoods where the movement first took shape along with top designers Ben Zamora (lighting), Gabriel Berry (costumes) and Garth MacAleavey (sound).
FLEXN was created in the era of unrest following rulings on Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri and Eric Garner in New York City. It confronts issues of social injustice, with the dancers exploring personal narratives and performing both as individuals and in groups, to choreography created by the ensemble itself. These artists utilize breathtakingly beautiful movement to tell deeply human stories that often transmute into joyful artistic expression.
Characterized by pausing, snapping, gliding, bone breaking, hat tricks, animation, and contortion, flex is a form of street dance that evolved from the Jamaican bruk-up found in dance halls and reggae clubs in Brooklyn over the last ten years.
From the pages of The New Yorker, to the small screen, to dance competitions and music videos and even on the big screen at the Tribeca Film Festival, flex culture has risen into the mainstream lexicon and created an entirely new movement vocabulary in post-modern dance.
FLEXN was commissioned and produced by Park Avenue Armory in New York.
“At first amazes and then glides into the mystical… it was jaw-dropping.” (The New York Times)
“Part protest, part dance party, part collective autobiography… FLEXN rails against social injustice, from police brutality to the prison system’s failures in America... By turns tragic and playful, we see the dancers at war, at work, at home; these situations are evoked with a mindboggling repertoire of quaking, pretzeling, rippling freestyle moves.” (The New York Times)
POST SHOW Q&A
Q&A following the performance in the Playhouse on Friday 25 September
TAKE PART IN OUR FESTIVAL CONVERSATIONS
Join Peter Sellars as he delivers the inaugural Brisbane Festival Oration on Hope, Change, and Art as Social Action on Friday 25 September at 6pm at the Playhouse Stage, QPAC. Entry is free.
Join artists from the show along with a panel for Festival Conversation ‘Street Cultures’. This commences Sunday 20 September at 2pm at Auditorium 1, State Library of Queensland. Entry is free.
Join artists from the show along with a panel for Festival Conversation ‘#BlackLivesMatter’. This commences Monday 21 September at 12pm at Auditorium 1, State Library of Queensland. Entry is free.
A Collaboration of Reggie (Regg Roc) Gray, Peter Sellars and Members of the Flex Community
Lighting Sculpture & Design
Park Avenue Armory
In Association with ArKtype / Thomas O. Kriegsmann
Sam I Am
World premiere: Park Avenue Armory, New York City, March 2015.
Originally commissioned and produced by Park Avenue Armory
Flexn dancing: styles and techniques
This is a special segment of BKLYN FLEX. Watch the Flex dancers at the D.R.E.A.M event in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn show off their Flex dancing skills. D.R.E.A.M. stands for "dance rules everything around me" and it is a program created by Regg (an OG Flex dancer)
flexn: advice to audience
Reggie Gray gives the following advice to the audience of FlexN.
The d.r.e.a.m ring
Watch Reggie explain the D.R.E.A.M ring below.
THE D.R.E.A.M. RING (DANCE RULES EVERYTHING AROUND ME) strives to provide quality competitions that honors the culture of the Brooklyn community, encourages artistic and character development, provides youth with a safe environment to express their artistry, ensures a wealth of opportunities such as performing in schools and teaching in after school programs, displays the young artist and their talents through social media marketing and branding through artists reels, dance videos, performances, and helps young artist gain the skills needed to build careers in the dance industry.
Our team-oriented company’s purpose is to gain global popularity by exposing our audiences to the various styles of street dance and inspiring them to embrace and join our distinctive aesthetic and cultural dance competition company, “THE D.R.E.A.M. RING”.
FlexN is the essence of Brooklyn and this company. It is a street dance genre that was born and transformed in the Brooklyn community.(not to be a fashion). This company is inspired by the essence of flexN and will be known for helping flexN become a distinguished and respected genre within the dance industry.
THE DREAM RING Facebook
THE DREAM RING YouTube
Read a Q&A with leader of the FlexN crew Reggie Gray
Read a New York Times Review of "FlexN"
Watch videos about the making of FlexN on the Park Avenue Armory YouTube channel
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