Choreographer Chris Black co-founded POTRZEBIE Dance Project in San Francisco in 1993 and since that time has presented over 25 new dances, both alone and within collaborative relationships, as well as projects for film and theater.
Chris has presented eleven full evenings of work and performed on many curated programs, including the E! Festival at Dancers’ Group/Footwork, Double Feature at ODC Theater, Summerfest at the Cowell Theater, DanceIS at the Julia Morgan Theater and The Walking Distance Dance Festival in Willits, CA.
Chris received a 2002 Individual Artist Commission from the San Francisco Arts Commission in support of the solo dance-theater piece, The Ecstasy of Saint Whatshername, created in collaboration with director Mark Jackson. The piece was revived at ODC Theater in 2004 and nominated for an Isadora Duncan Dance Award for Best Individual Performance. The Adventures of Cunning & Guile, created and performed in collaboration with Ken James, had two successful runs onsite at The Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco, received the SF Bay Guardian’s “Stage Pick,” and garnered Chris and Ken a a 2006 Isadora Duncan Dance Award for Best Choreography and a nomination for Best Ensemble Performance. It has been performed in various incarnations at multiple festivals and a wedding.
In 2007 Chris again received an Individual Artist Commission in support of the critically acclaimed Pastime: a dance about baseball (and everything else), which was performed free to the public in multiple locations within the San Francisco Parks system. The piece was featured in a paper presented by academic Jeff Katz at the 2009 Symposium on Baseball and American Culture at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and will be further discussed in Mr. Katz’s upcoming book, Plie Ball! Baseball and Dance on Stage and Screen.
Chris was a resident artist at the California Academy of Sciences in 2011, where she created Extinction Burst: a dance of lost movement, a site dance whose goal is to bring a kinetic memory of extinct animals into the present. Chris was awarded her third Individual Artist Commission for the piece, which was performed throughout the California Academy of Sciences in September 2011. In 2014 Chris resturned to the Academy and staged a three-hour loop of the Passenger Pigeon sections of the piece, in recognition of the 100th anniversary of the extinction of the once multitudinous species.
Chris’ most recent large scale project is TOUGH, a solo about strength, inspired by John L. Sullivan, the last heavyweight bare-knuckle boxing champion. It premiered at Z Below in San Francisco in 2014, was presented by Motion Pacific in Santa Cruz, CA in October 2015 in their inaugural Instersection Festival of Queer Arts and will be seen again at Shotgun Cabaret in Berkeley, CA in December 2015.