No matter where you’re from, one step to becoming a local is a fierce dedication to a particular food.
Choreographer Reggie Wilson isn’t quite a Philadelphian yet, but he’s got that first step down. After 18 months of frequent trips to Philly from Brooklyn, the founder of New York’s Fist & Heel Performance Group swears by the biscuits at Sam’s Morning Glory Diner in Bella Vista.
What makes the city so special, in part, is what Wilson has been coming to town to explore. As part of the Painted Bride’s “Re-PLACE-ing Philadelphia” project — which calls on
three artists to create new works celebrating the city’s history — Wilson will premiere his new piece “Stamped, Stomped, Stumped” this weekend. In the coming weeks, artists Faustin Linyekula and Marty Pottenger will also present new pieces that help tell stories that are
typically overlooked in the historical narrative of the city.
The show culminates a year and a half of conversations and investigations that Wilson has been conducting with a group of locally-based dancers and choreographers, including Kristel Baldoz,
David Brick, Paul Hamilton, Germaine Ingram, Jumatatu Poe, Maria Urrutia, and Miles Yeung-Tieu. The award-winning dancer/choreographer will incorporate their movement and ideas into his own work, which draws on influences from the African diaspora in the Americas.
Things like a favorite biscuit or local hang are key to figuring out how we fit into a place, Wilson says. “It’s about the minutiae, but it’s also about how those little things add up. At what point does an outsider become an insider in a particular community, and what are the telltale signs of how that differs?”
While “Stamped, Stomped, Stumped” will reveal the discoveries that Wilson and his collaborators have made so far, he insists that the process is still ongoing. This weekend’s shows will be part
performance, part engagement, including conversations with the audience that Wilson hopes will allow the piece to continue to evolve over the course of its three performances.
If you go:
Stamped, Stomped, Stumped
April 14-16, 8 p.m.
Painted Bride Art Center
230 Vine St.