In The Studio: Raja Feather Kelly On Love, Money and Andy Warhol
Raja Feather Kelly's gender-bending, race-flipping and thought-provoking work Another Fucking Warhol Production or Who's Afraid of Andy Warhol?—now titled The Love Episode (Another Fucking Warhol Production)—is making its way back to the stage. Kelly's company, the feath3r theory, will be performing the revived work at Dance Place in Washington, D.C. on April 21 and 22. Per usual, the music will make you want to stand up in your seat and dance your pants off, but it's not a show you'll want to bring the kids to.
We stepped into the studio with Kelly to talk love, money and his fascination with Andy Warhol.
Why bring back this work from The Warhol Series?
I feel like the topic is still relevant—love is over 80% of media content. The Love Episode (Another Fucking Warhol Production) will tour to DC and after that my goal is to get the work to as many locations as possible.
the feath3r theory in rehearsal for The Love Episode (Another Fucking Warhol Production)
Where did your initial fascination with Andy Warhol come from?
I'm fascinated with popular culture in general. It has shaped who I am and it shapes who you are. Andy Warhol was a pioneer and a maven of popular culture. He understood it better than anyone else I have encountered. It only seems fitting to be fascinated.
In a recent story on dancemagazine.com you talked to us about your struggle with the grant cycle. What advice would you give to young choreographers who are struggling to receive financial support to produce their own work?
Being a young choreographer myself, I guess I would tell them to keep looking. Don't give up. Ask for help. Hope is the thing with feathers, right? We're the feath3r theory!
More than once, when I'm sporting my faded, well-loved ballet hoodie, some slight variation of this conversation ensues:
"Is your daughter the dancer?"
"Actually," I say, "I am."
"Wow!" they enthuse. "Who do you dance with? Or have you retired...?"
"I don't dance with a company. I'm not a professional. I just take classes."
Insert mic drop/record scratch/quizzical looks.
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Voting is open until September 17th. Only one vote per person will be counted.
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