American Realness

Neal Medlyn


Co-Presented by Abrons Arts Center & Gibney Dance


Thursday, January 11, 10:00pm
Friday, January 12, 8:30pm
Saturday, January 13, 5:30pm
Sunday, January 14, 2:30pm
Tuesday, January 16, 7:00pm

Run Time: 90 minutes

Abrons Arts Center, Experimental Theater, 466 Grand Street, Manhattan
Single Tickets $25 / Abrons Festival Pass $20

Single Tickets Festival Pass

I <3 PINA is devoted to the dance maker and cultural legend Pina Bausch. For its creation, Medlyn met with dance professionals and fans that are close to Bausch’s body of work. The encounters happened under the guise of a date to frame the heavily emotional grounds of everything that surrounds the dead choreographer’s legacy. He exchanged text messages, Twitter direct messages and went to bars with a New York Times dance critic, a theater maker, a choreographer and others. His investigation delves into his own feelings about Bausch and her work as well as his 10 years as an untrained dancer in New York contemporary dance. These encounters serve as material for a poetic documentary script in a music performance and choreography extracted from sections of Bausch’s dances. 

I <3 PINA was commissioned by Kampnagel, Hamburg, Germany.
Photo by Gillian Walsh

Created by Neal Medlyn
Choreography adapted from works by Pina Bausch by Gillian Walsh with contributions from Maggie Cloud
Text by Neal Medlyn with contributions from Siobhan Burke, Gillian Walsh, Lumi Tan
Music by Tchaikovsky, Rihanna, Rocio Durcal, Juan Llossas, Lauryn Hill, Spiritualized, George Gershwin via Kate Bush, Lenny Williams
re-purposed video clip from ABC television “The Bachelorette”

Neal Medlyn is a musician and artist whose work straddles the lines between performance art, comedy, and music. His most well-known work is his seven show Pop Star Series and Champagne Jerry, the subsequent iteration of his work with popular music.

His work as Champagne Jerry has appeared at Joe’s Pub, BAM, New York Live Arts and on tour in various music venues, art galleries and Walmart parking lots as well as online. His album “For Real, You Guys” debuted in 2014 and his latest album “The Champagne Room” debuted in 2016. His albums feature collaborations with Max Tannone, Adam Ad-Rock Horovitz, Bridget Everett, Kathleen Hanna and others. Champagne Jerry was a musical guest on “The Chris Gethard Show” on Fusion TV. His touring stage show was named the best show in Chicago in 2016 and has performed around the U.S. in various clubs, Walmart parking lots and internationally in Vienna, Austria and London, U.K.

The Pop Star Series works, which dealt with work and ideas inspired by a diverse range of artists like Insane Clown Posse, Miley Cyrus and Michael Jackson, have been presented at venues such as Dance Theater Workshop, The Kitchen, PS122, the Chocolate Factory and others as well as in various festivals and theaters around the U.S. and abroad such as American Realness, the TBA Festival, the Live Art Festival at Kampnagel in Hamburg, Germany and others. The Pop Star Series was also made into a book published by 53rd State Press. Other work, notably his reenactment of a Beyoncé concert, has been presented by the New Museum for Contemporary Art, the Andy Warhol Museum. He has received support from Creative Capital, NYFA and others.