BlackLight Summit 2022
The Art of Becoming, Power and Passion: The More I Am, The More I Become.
The Clarice’s BlackLight Summit aims to activate the unimagined possibilities in dance–it is a convening that envisions dance as a conduit to galvanize resilience and inventiveness. Returning for a second year, the 2022 summit explores three fundamental inquiries: “What/who are we becoming?” “How do we return to one another?” and “Does progress equal healing?” Throughout the 2021–22 season, the BlackLight Summit will continue to foster community connection by facilitating a series of mentoring and professional development opportunities, conversations and performances.
Health + Safety
All patrons 12 years of age and older are required to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test result from a test taken within 48 hours of the performance for entry into the venue (home tests will NOT be accepted).
Masks must be worn at all times. Please see our Health + Safety page for more information.
BlackLight Summit 2022 Artists:
Baye & Asa (he/him, he/him) is a company creating movement art projects directed by Amadi ‘Baye’ Washington & Sam ‘Asa’ Pratt. They grew up together in New York City and that shared educational history is the mother of their work. Through the personal dynamics of their brotherhood, they address the larger political landscape of their upbringing, struggling to show a reality of violence while communicating a necessity for empathy.
Charlie Maybee (he/him) is a music and dance artist from Woodbridge, VA. He holds an M.F.A. in Dance from the University of Illinois with a certificate in Criticism and Interpretive Theory, a B.F.A. from Virginia Commonwealth University and is an alumnus of the Metropolitan Youth Tap Ensemble. As an educator, Charlie is currently on faculty at Shenandoah University where he primarily teaches tap dance technique, choreography, history and improvisation.
Greg David (they/them) is a movement artist based in the DMV area. Exploring themes of grief, fear, care and solitude, the work and movement they enjoy making goes hand in hand with human emotion and experience and aims to capture that essence in motion. David joined Culture Shock Washington DC® in 2012 and became the Artistic Director for their 2015 and 2016 seasons where, nationally and internationally, they presented stage works and taught workshops.
Recently acknowledged as a 2021 Princess Grace Award Recipent in Choreograpy, and nominated for two 2021 Bessie Awards in Dance and Performance, Johnnie Cruise Mercer (he/him) is a queer-black think-maker, freelance-performer, educator and social entrepreneur based in New York City. A native of Richmond, VA, Mercer holds a BFA in Dance and Choreography from Virginia Commonwealth University. As the Company Director of Johnnie Cruise Mercer/TheREDprojectNYC, his processes/work has been shared and/or hosted by 92Y Harkness Dance Center, Gibney: Agnes Varis Performing Arts Center, Dixon Place, Danspace Project Inc, The Fusebox Festival, Mana Contemporary, The NADA Conference, Abrons Arts Center and most recently at The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center's BlackLight Summit. As an educator, Mercer facilitates within the New York Public School system through The Leadership Program-a mentorship-based organization that uses art to foster/engage restorative justice and motivate the true empowerment of self. Mercer has also been on teaching faculty/a guest artist at The American Dance Festival, Bates Dance Festival, PRATT Institute, NYU Tisch Dance Program, Gibney, University of Massachusetts Amherst, DeSales University, Muhlenberg College, the University of Texas at Austin, University of Maryland and The Dance Institute of Washington. Mercer was most recently a 2019-2021 Artist in Residence at Brooklyn Arts Exchange, a 2020-2021 Ping Chong and Company Creative Fellow and a 2020-2021 AIR through New Dance Alliance’s Black Artists Space to Create Residency curated by Angie Pittman. He is currently a 2022 Artist in Residence at Center for Performance Research.
Kayla Farrish (she/her) / Decent Structures Arts is an emerging company combining filmmaking, storytelling, dance theater performance and sound score. The company has been commissioned by Gibney Dance Inc (2020-2021), Louis Armstrong House Museum (2020), Danspace Project Inc (2019), Pepatian and BAAD! (2018) and beyond. Kayla has been supported by creative residencies including Gallim Women + Residency (2021), Gibney Spotlight: New Voices, Barysnikov Arts Center and Arts On Site (2020).