Premiere New York Premiere
Country of Origin United States
Description Cynthia Oliver’s world-premiere dance work Virago-Man Dem explores both the overt and unspoken expressions of black masculinity through movement, spoken word, and original visual projections from the collaborative entity Black Kirby. Reflecting on the term “virago” and its definition of characteristically male behaviors and female cultural transgressions, the work is driven by a core query: "How can a woman choreograph masculinity, without resorting to stereotypes?” Oliver tackles this challenge with a nuanced study in the multiplicities of masculinity, within Caribbean and African-American cultures. The work is based on the lives of its African-American and Afro-Caribbean performers Duane Cyrus, Jonathan Gonzalez, Niall Noel Jones, and Ni’Ja Whitson, and shifts from their specific experiences to broader cultural perspectives.