American Realness

Will Rawls

The Planet-Eaters: Seconds

Thursday, January 5, 7:00pm
Friday, January 6, 8:30pm
Monday, January 9, 7:00pm – SOLD OUT*
Tuesday, January 10, 10:00pm – SOLD OUT*

*A waiting list will begin 30 minutes before each performance.

Run Time: 55 minutes

Abrons Arts Center, Underground Theater
466 Grand Street / tickets $20

Single Tickets Festival Pass

Part-dance, part-song, and part-travelogue, The Planet-Eaters: Seconds explores a duet as an intimate exchange of rhythms. In this reconfiguration of his previous work The Planet-Eaters, Will Rawls and musician Chris Kuklis inhabit Balkan folklore in a series of attempts to become self and other. What starts as a game of counting for two moves through further encounters that are epic, incidental, singular, plural and neither here nor there.

The Planet-Eaters: Seconds was developed as part of LMCC’s Extended Life Dance Development program made possible in part by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The first iteration of The Planet-Eaters was originally produced and presented at The Chocolate Factory Theater.
Photo by Brian Rogers

The Planet-Eaters – Seconds, 2016, 8:tension, ImPulsTanz (Prix Jardin d’Europe)
I make me [sic], 2016, MoMA PS1, Greater New York Exhibition
Personal Effects, 2015, Performa 15, Westbeth Center
Settlement House, 2015, Abrons Arts Center Centennial Celebration
#loveyoumeanit (collaboration with Kaitlyn Gilliland), 2015, Danspace Project

Will Rawls is a writer, choreographer and performer. Rawls creates solo and group works that unravel and reconfigure around the idea of self and becoming. By placing the body into resonant encounters with other media, Rawls cultivates the ambiguous and experiential nature of choreographic work. Rawls recent work has focused on authorship, memory, race and subjectivity as intersecting monuments in need of constant undoing. He is recipient of the Casinos Austria 2016 Prix Jardin d’Europe for his work The Planet-Eaters: Seconds. He is also recipient of a Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Residency 2017, a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grant 2015 and was a Mellon Foundation Creative Campus Fellow at Wesleyan University 2015-2016.

CHRIS KUKLIS (Musician/Performer) is an electric guitarist, composer and educator who works and lives in Brooklyn, NY. During his studies at The New School (BFA, Jazz & Contemporary Music), he focused on contemporary and experimental improvisatory composition, leading experimental ensembles and studying with free improvisation luminaries including Gerry Hemingway & William Parker. By day, Chris is a mild- mannered guitar instructor, operating an innovative educational collective called Brooklyn Guitar Lessons. By night, he composes and performs in a wide variety of vividly diverse musical contexts, from experimental improvised music to indie rock to live electronica and beyond. Chris has performed contemporary works in world-class venues, including Lincoln Center Out Of Doors (Rhys Chatham’s A Crimson Grail) and John Zorn’s avant-garde stronghold The Stone (with William Parker). His compositions have been performed in festivals and art exhibitions around the world, including a critically acclaimed multimedia installation for Hopes, Dreams & Hard Times at the Benaki Museum in Athens, Greece. As a composer, Chris’ primary foci are sound textures, repetition, rhythmic layering, emotional density, and the fusion of traditional instruments and methods with contemporary means of electronic sound manipulation. More at

“A choreographer and writer, Mr. Rawls never lands for too long in any one medium, staying nomadic with the help of his sound and costume collaborators. One pleasure of watching “Seconds,” a reconfiguration of his 2013 “The Planet-Eaters,” is not knowing where to place it.”
– The Planet-Eaters: Seconds, Review NYT

“Rawls’s accumulated dance was noisy—the inchoate frequencies of gasps, howls, and moans winning out over fully-formed language—but it laconically addresses at least two concerns central to the field of performance. First is the notion that we perform our identities: that identity does not stem from an interior essence but is constituted through the repeated performance of social codes and stylized acts. Rawls appears to both speed up and slow down this process, condensing the diverse lines of motion that have formed him into a repertoire that can be watched in real time. The shared codes that come to articulate and define certain identities become fluid and ambiguous—as when Rawls stretched and scrunched his hoodie in and out of its recognizable form, merging a charged symbol of black masculinity with the creaturely shape shifting of Xavier Le Roy.” – Personal Effects, Performa Magazine