Black love unfurled and redesigned in Danc­ing Again in Love’

2 minute read
'Dancing Again in Love' is about learning to self-love. (Photo provided by Sabriaya Shipley.)
'Dancing Again in Love' is about learning to self-love. (Photo provided by Sabriaya Shipley.)

For me, black love is the strongest embodiment of power. It has also been an act of resilience and a revolt against oppressive systems and practices within society and my own personal relationships, affirming and asserting my existence as a queer, black-indigenous woman. In 2013 I began a journey of revolutionizing my self-love. I wanted to be involved in a love, with myself and others, that was full-bodied in an abundance of support, nurturing, acceptance, inclusion, consideration, empowerment, health, and wellbeing. To have this, I realized I needed to consider what love then looks like serving my wellbeing in all aspects of my life—another process of this is in examining the love I was raised within; the love I grew from.

Redesigning love

Dancing Again in Love is a raw look at black love and the black femme’s journey of (re)inventing love told through choreographed poems about experiences with generational forms of love, the pains and pleasures of love through time, and the process of redesigning love through acknowledging, healing, and breaking cycles of toxic habits and trauma.

In an interview with playwright/director Sabriaya Shipley, they said “I am a citizen artist working for the community.” When creating this show, Shipley considered accessibility—choosing the location of Tree House Books to allow this to be an event for the community; considering affordability in ticket prices, and how they can incorporate ways to keep this two-year running show a space for people to come and safely examine, acknowledge, heal, and uplift themselves alongside others embarking on the journey of “Learning how to love properly—to love self and others beyond generational bounds with toxic love, and how not to do toxic things within relationships.”

What, When, Where

Dancing Again in Love opens at Fringe Festival on Saturday September 7 and runs through the month on September 8, 13–15, and 20–22, 2019 at Tree House Books, 1430 West Susquehanna Avenue, Philadelphia. Tickets are $10 and are available online.

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