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Raja Kelly

Guest Choreographer

Raja ‘Feather’ Kelly, the “feath3r theory” performer/choreographer, currently divides his time between New York, Seattle, and Berlin. Raja is a company member with David Dorfman Dance, zoe|juniper (SEA), RaceDance, Squint Productions, Reggie Wilson/Fist and Heel Performance Group, and PEARSONWIDRIG Dance Theater.  Feather has recently performed with Kyle Abraham/ through the premiere of THE RADIO SHOW, which received a New York Dance & Performance (BESSIE) Award. Feather has been a guest artist at New York University, The University of Virginia, University of Pittsburgh, Dance New Amsterdam, Coker College, Memphis University, and most recently at Dance House in Melbourne, Australia. Feather is a co-producer of a summer dance series in Bushwick, Brooklyn: RoofTop Dance, a contributing writer for The Dance Enthusiast and company manages RaceDance and zoe|juniper. He holds a BA with Honors in Dance and English from Connecticut College.

Feather created the feath3r theory in 2009, after writing a novel of the same title during his exchange studies in Sydney, Australia. The novel was a part of NaNoWriMo, an annual (November) novel writing project that brings together professional and amateur writers from all over the world to write a 50,000-word novel in 30 days. The premise of the novel questions what life would be like if humans had the nature of feathers. The Feath3r Theory alongside The Little Drummer Boy’s ‘do you hear what I hear?’ is the developing manifesto for the performance work directed by Feather. The performance work of the company has been presented in New York City, Seattle, Washington, Connecticut, Portland and New Jersey.

‘Who’s Afraid of Andy Warhol?’(WAOAW), the company’s newest project, has started its creation in Berlin, Germany and Vienna, Austria, through a Resident Artist and Mentorship program with Ami Garmon/Squint Productions and Remedy Studios (Berlin). Early iterations of WAOAW have been performed at the T:BA Festival’s Ten Tiny Dances in Portland Oregon, The Construction Company and Triskelion Arts in New York, NY, and at the Velocity Dance Center’s Silver Factory Bash, which Feather art-directed. WAOAW is a dynamic engagement of storytelling driven by popular Warholian themes such as the relationship between artistic expression and celebrity culture, and multimedia and performance. Literature/Poetry, Theater and Visual Art play an important role in the life of the company. Feather has an ongoing and strong relationship to the written word and the still image. Much of the company’s work is realized through a shared writing practice within the cast. Writing is a quest for Feather to use words to get to wordlessness and using choreography as a vehicle to get from one image to another.

Other recent creative projects include MUTT_ _ _ _ and other 4-letter words, a duet in collaboration with Feather’s mentor Ami Garmon, inspired by love, loss, and games children play. MUTT_ _ _ _ and other 4-letter words is slated to premiere in Berlin in August 2013.

Photograph by Nick Edwards

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