Lincoln Center for Performing Arts Library Hosts SANCTUARY CITY THEMED POETRY & DANCE COLLABORATION Preview

“The forecast is unfavorable for migratory flight.” 

So begins the poem by Brazilian writer Katia Bandeira de Mello-Gerlach called The Year of the Bird.   This imagery-rich poem became the basis of a collaboration between Bandeira and Canadian-born Allison Plamondon, whose dance reviews you can often read on Picture this Post.

This timely exploration of immigration-- by two artists from another country— is the output of a grant both won.  Never having met before, they were paired artistically by the grantors.   Picture this Post (PTP) caught up with Allison Plamondon (AP) to get more details on their collaboration, which they say has been a very positive experience.

CHOREOGRAPHER Allison Piamondon
Choreographer Allison Plamondon
Katia Bandeira de Mello-Gerlach Photo: Rodrigo Lopes

(PTP) Please tell our readers about the grant that led to this performance? 

(AP) I had the honor of being a 2017 fellow in the Immigrant Artist Mentorship Program at New York Foundation for the Arts. Among other things, this incredible mentorship program fosters community and provides opportunities-one of which was the chance to submit a program presentation to  Evan Leslie, artistic producer at Lincoln Center’s Library for the Performing Arts. I proposed a collaboration of choreography and text, and Evan paired me with Brazilian writer, Katia Bandeira de Mello-Gerlach.
Has this collaboration challenged your choreography in new directions? 

I always love to use text as inspiration, but Katia’s poem The Year of the Bird is particularly rich with imagery.

Is performing in the Lincoln Center venue similar or different from other places where you have performed?  Does it afford new staging opportunities?

Well, it’s really exciting to be asked to do anything at Lincoln Center! I have performed in “Tap City, The Main Event!” Which was in the Bruno Walter Auditorium (at the library), but this presentation is in more of an informal cafe setting with limited space. That said, I find parameters to be very inspiring and love creating within constraints.

What do you both hope to communicate to the audience in this joint work?

A collaboration between a Canadian and a Brazilian may not be obvious or common (and we are certainly from different climates), but Katia and I are LOVING working together.

 Actress Debra Lass will be reading two of Katia’s poems and dancer Laurie Deziel will be performing the new short piece I choreographed based on her text. We will also have an interactive component to the evening where the audience gets a taste of the creative process firsthand.


Friday, May 11, 7 PM


The Performing Arts Library at Lincoln Center
40 Lincoln Center Plaza
Manhattan, New York


Free, but advance reservations are recommended.  Visit the Lincoln Center Performing Arts Library website.

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