I went to Buenos Aires on an ArtMatters travel grant with the understanding I would create a project while down there. I discovered a nightclub with an amazing history and knew it would be my muse. I also discovered that two parallel economies exist in Argentina, one for tourists and one for locals. Knowing that my grant money would go much further in the local economy, I used the leftover grant funds as prize money for a dance contest held at the club.
I created challenges like Freezeframe (“Bring your best moves to the floor, but be prepared to freeze in place and hold it for a looong time”) and Meltdown (“Give us your fiercest moves, but when the alarm sounds, you slowly start to feel your body melt. You keep on dancing, fighting it and trying to play it cool, but by the end of the song you are just a pile of ooze.”)
In an upset a 19 year old IT technician with no previous dance experience beat out his more outrageous competitors. When his number was announced, the audience broke out into thunderous cheering, and he was lifted onto his friend’s shoulders, almost hitting his head on the low ceiling.