State of Play invites you to join the creative process through a curated artistic exchange, presenting premieres and works in progress from dance artists across the Bay Area and the US designed to bring audiences and artists closer together.

The art of art-making goes through many unique processes: prompts, inspiration, feedback, collaboration, frustration, improvisation. One constant in this process is play - the notions of experimentation, risk, and curiosity.

Join us at State of Play, August 3 -13, 2023.

Festival passes are now available.
Weekend Passes - $150 (valued at $200)
Festival Passes - $300 (valued at $360)

Weekend Passes redeem 1 ticket to each artists's show for one weekend of State of Play. Festival Passes redeem 1 ticket to each artists's show for both weekends of State of Play. The ODC Box Office will contact pass holders in Spring 2023 to reserve seats. Due to limited seating capacity, patrons are encouraged to reserve early. Without reservations, seating will be accommodated on a first come first serve basis. 

Check back in Spring 2023 for information on individual tickets. For up to date information sign up for our mailing list.

Purchase a Festival Pass

Audrey Johnson

Baye & Asa


Ajani Brannum

Gizeh Muñiz Vengel

Kensaku Shinohara

Indira Allegra

Tableau Stations

Marissa Brown / Lone King Projects


Yanira Castro / a canary torsi

Jerron Herman

State of Play Festival Joint Curatorial Statement

We began, unknown to one another, with cocktails, seeing work together, sharing hopes and disappointments for the field, curiosity, research, utopian lists, instinct, and much expectancy for what could be.

We found ourselves in solidarity and intrigued by a particular artistic integrity—of the work, the statement, the depth, the person, and the experience. We approached this curation with a desire for justice and transformation, and centered the profound promise that exists beyond white supremacist, patriarchal frames.

Our hope, as guest voices in the 2023 ODC Theater season, is to help usher in some new possibilities for dance—dance that sits and stares back at you, lays claim, folds you into its arms, demands, incites, and gives unabashedly. We found our cohort.

These artists and works accumulate into a statement about expansion and reimagination. Together, this season, we will celebrate the multitude of nows and the futures that dance can embolden us to inhabit. The revolution will be embodied. You’ll see. Join us in the resistance, the rage, the sorrow, and the joy.
Maurya Kerr & Leyya Mona Tawil
Curators, State of Play Festival


Photo of Maurya Kerr, taken by Alan Kimara Dixon

Photo of Leyya Mona Tawil, taken by Cameron Kelly.jpg

  • Ajani Brannum: the wasp project

    Friday, August 4, 2023 at 6:00pm
    Sunday, August 6, 2023 at 4:00pm

    Artist Bio
    Ajani Brannum (they/them) is an undisciplinary artist who works between movement, writing, sound, facilitation, and divination. They develop animist strategies for locating and relating in the world. Originally hailing from Anchorage, Alaska, Ajani holds a PhD in Culture and Performance from UCLA, and is an alum of Jade T. Perry's Cecilia Weston Spiritual Academy.

    Project Description
    the wasp project is an exercise in undisciplinary wayfinding. Hovering somewhere between story circle, conversation, and ceremony, the work stays orienting in and to the world (however, wherever, we find and define it). the wasp project is part of an ongoing investigation into practices for doing-self, and it asks how Afro-diasporic cosmologies help make performance happen. It seeks the wisdom of living and non-living beings alike. It won’t leave any of us alone. It explores how we be in the ever-unfolding present.

  • Audrey Johnson: land|body|memory

    Saturday, August 5, 2023 at 5pm
    Friday, August 11, 2023 at 5pm

    Artist Bio
    Audrey Johnson (she/her) is dance artist with roots from Detroit, MI/Anishinaabe land, currently living in Oakland, CA/Ohlone land. Grounded in a lineage of queer Black feminist praxis, her work experiments with improvisation and embodied time travel. Her performances have been presented in the Bay Area by CounterPulse, Gravity, FRESH Festival, Queering Dance Festival, 2727 California Street. Audrey has collaborated with dance artists including Gerald Casel, Jennifer Harge, Biba Bell, and Stephanie Hewett.

    Project Description
    land|body|memory is an iterative dance performance and research project occurring as a series of movement prayers. A call and response to and from the land and body, the work centers Black folks in relationship to land through study, interview, food, and performance. Johnson activates and experiments with improvisation and ritual. 

  • Baye & Asa: Suck it Up

    Thursday, August 3, 2023 at 6:00pm
    Saturday, August 5, 2023 at 6:00pm

    Artist Bio
    Baye & Asa is a company creating movement art projects directed & choreographed by Amadi ‘Baye’ Washington & Sam ‘Asa’ Pratt. We’ve presented our live work at The Joyce Theater, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The 92nd Street Y, Baryshnikov Arts Center, Jacob’s Pillow, DanceHouse Vancouver, Blacklight Summit, Battery Dance Festival, and were selected as one of Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch" for 2022. Our film work has won numerous awards and been presented internationally.

    Project Description
    Heteronormative advertising campaigns tell men that they are weak, small, balding and flaccid. These commercial images promise status, offer solutions to inadequacy, and breed entitlement.  Men mimic this commercialized masculinity and act out when they are not rewarded.  Internalized deficiency creates a culture of resentment and has led to violence. This duet confronts the violent fallout.

  • DANDY: A DANDY Affair

    Friday, August 11, 2023
    Sunday, August 13, 2023

    Artist Bio
    Dandy is a creative partnership designed to celebrate and elevate the Black cultural landscape of Seattle, WA. David Rue (Liberian-born) and Randy Ford (Seattle-born) use art, dance, fashion, and pop-culture as forms of activism, story-telling, and joy centering.

    Project Description
    A DANDY Affair is a multi disciplinary performance that utilizes film, movement, and original music to showcase the work of DANDY, a west-coast based creative partnership created by David Rue and Randy Ford.

    Debut Status
    Bay Area debut of this work

  • gizeh muñiz-vengel: golden yellow light, rosa y mucho blue

    Friday, August 11, 2023

    Artist Bio
    gizeh muñiz vengel (she/they) Mexicana. Movement artist, Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapist and educator. They are devoted to the study of being a body, through movement and stillness.

    Project Description
    You dive deep into the bottom of the cenote. 
    You spend a long time underwater, knowing you'll have to come out at some point, even if you don't want to. 
    You think it is absurd that you need to get out at some point even if you don’t want to. 

    And then you think of all the things that are absurd in the world. You think of how absurd making dance is, for example. And then you remember Wislawa’s words: "I prefer the absurdity of writing poems to the absurdity of not writing poems". You know you prefer a world where you make dances, even if making dance makes no sense. 
    So you get out of the water, and go make dance. 


  • Indira Allegra: Crip Ecliptic

    Saturday, August 5, 2023
    Thursday, August 10, 2023

    Artist Bio
    Indira Allegra's works draw from an investigation of inner space, animism and the ritual, relational and performative aspects of weaving. As a social psychopomp they explore the transformative poetics of death, memorial and regeneration.

    Project Description
    Nurses on rotation, the sweep of IV poles rolling from one hemisphere of the hospital bed to the other and the ECG alarm all begin their orbit around a sleeping Sun within a crip celestial sphere

  • TABLEAU STATIONS / Isak Immanuel, Marina Fukushima, Surjit Nongmeikapam and Mercy Housing tenants: TERRAIN VAGUE & HOME

    Thursday, August 3, 2023 at 7:00pm
    Friday, August 4, 2023 at 7:00pm

    Artist Bio
    Tableau Stations is an intercultural performing arts platform engaging local and global questions of place. Through a diverse range of collaborations (with participants ranging from age five to in their nineties), projects actively engage perspectives to precarity, displacement, and presence. Based on extensive site-specific processes, work serves to negotiate city spaces with the intimacies and economies of individual bodies and intersectional community. Numerous works have been created in the SF Bay Area and internationally.

    Project Description
    An intergenerational performance project by Tableau Stations with Isak Immanuel, Marina Fukushima, Surjit Nongmeikapam, and local tenants of Mercy Housing. The project questions  placemaking and homemaking through a nuanced somatic lens. From fragments of searching for home amidst the pandemic and the repurposing of marginalized urban spaces for affordable housing, TERRAIN VAGUE & HOME navigates along coastlines, SF Mission Bay apartments, and a series of indeterminate landscapes. Questions of group listening, place history, and body memory are key layers of tending as craft, formation, and interrelationship.

  • Jerron Herman: VITRUVIAN

    Thursday, August 10, 2023 at 6:00pm
    Saturday, August 12, 2023 at 6:00pm

    Artist Bio
    Jerron Herman is a disabled dancer and writer who creates works to facilitate welcoming.He currently serves on the Board of Trustees at Dance/USA and regularly writes on art and culture. His play, 3 Bodies, was published in Theater Magazine June 2022. Jerron curated the series "Access Check 2.0" at the Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation and "Discourse: Disabled Artists at the Joyce" for The Joyce Theater. Awards include a 2020 Disability Futures Fellowship, the Grants to Artists Award from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts and a Jerome Hill Artist Fellowship from the Jerome Foundation, both in 2021.

    Project Description
    Hailed by the Brooklyn Rail as “a triumph of intention and reinvention, centering disability and celebrating Herman’s rebirth as his own divine form”, VITRUVIAN shares an allegorical tale of the life cycle of the Vitruvian man as he traverses multiple hemispheres, now in the embodiment of a Disabled Black man. Based on Da Vinci's famous sketch, the piece explores the ways natural phenomena and history enter and live in the body. 

    VITRUVIAN has been featured on NY1 and CBS New York as “a show to see”. The full evening was commissioned by Abrons Arts Center and developed during artistic and scholastic residencies at the Petronio Residency Center and Georgetown University. Other presentations have included a site specific interpretation at Governor's Island and virtual showings for the Passport Program at Lincoln Center as well as a month-long screening season at Abrons Arts Center. VITRUVIAN was archived into the Jerome Robbins Dance Division at the New York Public Library of Performing Arts following its premiere.

    Debut Status
    This is the Bay Area debut of this work. This work premiered in New York City in May 2022.

  • Kensaku Shinohara: Good Bye

    Thursday, August 10, 2023 at 7:00pm
    Friday, August 11, 2023 at 7:00pm

    Artist Bio
    Born in Sapporo, Japan, Kensaku Shinohara (he/him) is an artist who brings an education in anthropology to bear on his work as a choreographer/performer. He has presented his works in the U.S.A., Canada, Malaysia, Taiwan and Japan. Shinohara is a recipient of a 92Y Harkness Dance Center AIR, Exploring the Metropolis AIR, Queens Arts Fund, Japan Foundation New York to name a few.

    Project Description
    Choreographer/dancer Kensaku Shinohara shares a dance performance that reflects on sexuality, objectification, intimacy, dominance and boundaries. In this autobiographical piece, Shinohara traces the cultural shift in his moving from Japan to the U.S., the chaos and confrontation that he experienced, and the (literal) plunges he takes as he navigates the war zone of identity and physical collisions. 

  • Marissa Brown / Lone King Projects: How lonely sits the city

    Saturday, August 5, 2023 at 7:00pm
    Sunday, August 6, 2023 at 5:00pm

    Artist Bio
    Marissa Brown is a biracial, Black and Portuguese, Multidisciplinary artist. Her primary language comes from movement of the body and translates into works of live performance, film, installation, photography, and publication. She has her BFA in performance and choreography from University of California Irvine and MFA from California Institute of the Arts. Her work has been shown extensively in San Francisco, New York, and Los Angeles. Under the name Lone King Projects, she creates and shares intimate moments of expression.

    Project Description
    How lonely sits the city is a poetic layering of dance film and live performance that tells the quiet interior stories of Black identifying dancers who take on angel-like characters. Personal and historical narratives unfold throughout the films that have been formed publicly in and around historically Black neighborhoods of Los Angeles, CA. 

    Debut Status
    Bay Area debut of this work

  • pateldanceworks: fault lines: witness

    Saturday, August 6, 2023 at 3pm
    Saturday, August 13, 2023 at 3pm

    Artist Bio
    pateldanceworks (PDW) is directed by Bhumi B Patel, a queer, desi, home-seeker, science fiction choreographer, movement artist and writer. In its purest form, PDW collaborators create performance works as love letters to our ancestors. PDW moves at the intersection embodied research and generating new futures, using improvisational practice as a pursuit for liberation.

    Project Description
    fault lines is an ongoing, emergent, multidisciplinary series of performances and experiential activations. Each offering emerges from its last evolution and includes different constellations of members involved with pateldanceworks. This iteration of fault lines is performed by Bhumi B Patel with live sonic composition by Rachel Austin. It is a ritual portal – a doorway across generations and geography, a metaphorical opening of the earth returning us home even when we exist in-between: cultures, geographies, lineages. 

  • Yanira Castro / a canary torsi: I came here to weep

    Saturday, August 12, 2023 at 7:00pm
    Sunday, August 13, 2023 at 5:00pm

    Artist Bio
    Yanira Castro is a Puerto Rican born interdisciplinary artist living in Lenapehoking (Brooklyn, NY). Since 2009, she has made participatory performances and interactive installations with a team of collaborators under the moniker, a canary torsi. Her work is rooted in communal construction as a practice of radical democracy and invites the public into co-creation. Castro is the recipient of the 2022 Herb Alpert Award for Dance and has received two Bessie Awards for Outstanding Production and a NYFA Choreography Fellowship as well as various commissions, residencies and national project grant awards. Her latest projects include: “Last Audience: a performance manual” created and published with Museum Contemporary Art Chicago and a performance podcast, “Last Audience,” a 3-part space opera grounded in Boriken to be found on most podcast platforms.

    Project Description
    I came here to weep is a performance co-created with its audience. It is a confession, an intentional undoing, an exorcism. Castro asks questions about gathering in performance, catharsis and manipulation: Why are we here? How do we assemble? Are we community? The project contemplates assembling and weeping as direct action, as communal trust. Composed of participatory scores for the public, dances for mourning, and the re-composing and redaction of U.S. treaties on territorial possession, “weep” is a space for congregating, negotiating with the public how we inhabit together.

    Debut Status
    Bay Area debut of this work


Additional Information

Accessibility Services

ASL and additional wheelchair seating will be provided for select shows; please see individual event pages for more information. Captioning will be provided for Digital Encores. Please contact the ODC Box Office with accessibility requests or questions at

About ODC Theater

ODC Theater exists to empower and develop innovative artists. It participates in the creation of new works through commissioning, presenting, mentorship and space access; it develops informed, engaged and committed audiences; and advocates for the performing arts as an essential component to the economic and cultural development of our community. This 170-seat venue is the site of over 150 performances a year involving nearly 1,000 local, regional, national and international artists.

Since 1976, ODC Theater has been the mobilizing force behind countless San Francisco artists and the foothold for national and international touring artists seeking debut in the Bay Area. The Theater, founded by Brenda Way, has earned its place as a cultural incubator by dedicating itself to creative change-makers, those leaders who give the Bay Area its unmistakable definition and flair. Nationally known artists Spaulding Gray, Diamanda Galas, Bill T. Jones, Eiko & Koma, Ronald K. Brown/EVIDENCE, Karole Armitage, Sarah Michelson, Brian Brooks and John Heginbotham are among those whose first San Francisco appearance occurred at ODC Theater. ODC Theater is currently under the Creative Direction of Chloë L. Zimberg.

Make a donation to support ODC Theater


Arts Access

ODC offers a limited number of lower-cost Art Access tickets to every ODC presented performance and a limited number of free tickets held at the door for walk up attendance. These additionally subsidized tickets, available on a first come, first serve basis, are reserved for those for whom price is a barrier.
We know living in the Bay Area is expensive. We also highly value the art onstage and are invested in supporting the artists that create it. Ticket prices only cover a small fraction of the resources invested in the performance and we strive to make them as accessible as possible. Continued financial support through ticket purchases and charitable donations from people like you make Art Access tickets possible.
If you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to contact the ODC Box Office at


Health & Safety Information

Learn about ODC's current health and safety measures at



ODC is dedicated to the lifecycle of the artistic process. Through our company, school and theater, we aim to inspire audiences, cultivate artists, engage community, and foster diversity and inclusion through dance. LEARN MORE


ODC is on the ancestral lands of the Ramaytush People in Yelamu. We pay respects to elders past and present, who are still here and part of our community. We recognize that regenerative land management is not new, but is a continuation of practices from Native cultures and from our own ancestors. It is our responsibility to steward the land with care, as our elders did before us.
ODC is donating $.50 for each in-person ticket (seat) sold to all performances in the Theater. ODC will donate these funds to the Association of Ramaytush Ohlone land tax fund.