Out of the Box/Into the World

“Out of the Box/Into the World” celebrates breaking free from zoom boxes to return to face-to-face interaction. Four DC-area choreographers and their companies rely on each other’s physical presence for support during our stuttering return to community. They premiere contemporary dance crafted during the pandemic.

This return to the stage will take place at the newly established and highly acclaimed Fabian Barnes Black Box Theater at The Dance Institute of Washington (DIW). DIW is the leading minority-led, pre-professional dance equity organization in Washington DC with its state-of-the-art building located in the heart of Columbia Heights.

The evening includes works by four DC-area choreographers:

  • Sylvana Christopher’s “A Friend Like You,” a Winnie the Pooh ballet. Dancers crawl, leap, and spin against a storybook backdrop. During the trippy “March of the Heffalumps,” dancers swing pendular trunks, sidling forward as psychedelic colors burst upstage.

  • Stacey Yvonne Claytor’s “Together/Alone” comes to terms with the ravages of COVID. Dancers burst into whole-body lunges then pull themselves upright, one limb left twitching, reverberating the trauma. Remembering the departed, dancers sit in pews, alternately clinging together and pulling apart to enforce social distance.

  • In “Frayed,” Roxann Morgan Rowley brings her signature vision of movement and fabric. Dancers wield heavy, bridal-like gowns, twisting and turning frenetically, overbalanced by their burdens.

  • In “Personal Space,” meditating on dislocation during the pandemic, Malcolm Shute and Katie Sopoci Drake are adrift in the ocean upon a small table. Crowded and exhausted, the duo roll under, around, and on top of each other to keep one another from falling.


Dance Institute of Washington
3400 14th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20010
United States