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D UNDERBELLY derives its name from the ‘underbelly’ of a slave ship; excavating the legacies that surface from the depths of our cultural experiences.

D UNDERBELLY seeks to act as a catalyst for shifting perceptions, dismantling isms and recognizing the underlying contributions indigenous people from the Latin, Asia, Native and African diaspora have made to this new world culture.
A transdisciplinary network of artists of color,  D UNDERBELLY emerged circa 1996/7 in Minneapolis, MN, initially as a performative space for exploring the multi-layered dimensions of culture as it relates to societal notions of “blackness”. Invested in interdisciplinary experimentation through the excavation of ‘new work’ and communal exchange, D UNDERBELLY rigorously explores the ever-fluid relationship between movement, music, text, multimedia  and environmental configurations in order to encapsulate the complexities of the diaspora. Moving onto Brooklyn, Ny and cultivating connections in Chicago, Austin Tx, northern California and internationally, this network continues to evolve; embracing & interrelating with Latin, Asian and Native/Indigenous traditions and forms.
PROJECTS include:
Out of Africa & Beyond
Un-slave diaries
Basking in Negritude
Vive La Intersections
Revolutionary Acts
Non Je Regrette Rien
Receding ’emories
Koool-aid Luv Odyssey
N This Hous
First Dark Drama
Childr’n of “O”
S’Kin Deep
Water Moves the Soul
Intersections: Embracing the Spirit
the black trilogy – Black n Beyond, Studies N Black, the black | body
Live Deep N Flow
Re-Frame: A Gathering
Mixed Movement: Chicago Edition
Dance of Decay
Moving Dialogs
Postmodern Afro-Latinidad
Open Dances
CREATIVE FOLX of D UNDERBELLY – those who have contributed creatively, part of a continuum since 1996:
Stefania Strowder
Christal N. Brown
Leean Johnson
Chanon Judson
Daniel Marcellus Givens
André Austvoll
Manelich Minnifee
Geoff Albores
Jerome Harris
Jimmy Lopez
Alejuan Afuraka
e.g. bailey
Gin Hammond
Cheles Rhynes
Ceci Lewis
Francine Sheffield
Bernard Brown
Stephan Reynolds
Penelope McCourty
Margaret Morris
Usry Alleyne
Leann Johnson
Rachel Bernsen
Chelsea Gregory
Sonja Parks
Monstah Black
Laurie Carlos
Rafael Sanchez
Nikki Patin
Onye Ozuzu
Sha Cage
Douglas Ewart
Signe Harriday
Akil Davis
Joe Wilson
Chevon Stewart
Aole T. Miller
Phanuel Antwi
Dana Michel
Olasebikan Freeman
Monstah Black
Awilda Sterling Duprey
Joel Valentin-Martinez
Myra Boone
Carolyn Alvarado Castillo
Christa Bell
Shawn Odoms
Gesel Mason
Mameri Blue
Valerie McCleod-Katz
Nicole Mitchell
Jada Odom
Sunder Ashni
Sharon Bridgforth
Natasha Diamond Walker
Nikki B.
Sadie Woods
Marcus Doshi
Maya Lori
Aixa Kendrick
Anitrice Anderson
Delano Jean-Pierre
Matt Morgan
Roxane Wallace
Yaa Asantewaa
Channie Waites
Sandra Jean Gaillard
Mutale Kanyatta
Sojourner Wright
Ronnell Wheeler
Keisha Booker
Debra McGee
Brat Happy Hips James
Brenda Bell Brown
Mankwe Ndosi
Amanda Nicole Pope
Omagbitse Omagbemi
Chris Jones
Gesel Mason
Mark Hairston
Roger Hall
Reza Salazar
Anna Khimasia
Nur Abdulle
Julie Tamiko Manning
Theaster Gates
Black Monks of Mississippi
Jess Glavina
Janet Lumb
Inti Barrios Hernandez
James Goddard
Nikita Bala
Anthony Romero
Shanti Gonzales
Shyam Pillai
Tsehaye Hebert
Awilda Rodriguez-Lora
Jerron Herman
Ricarrdo Valentine
Orlando Hunter
Honey Pot Performance Collective
Syrus Marcus Ware
Terri Hudson
NicK King
Drew Coleman

From 1996 – 2010 D UNDERBELLY’s projects have been informed by this notion of liquid legacies:
the passing on of traditions through the body
the passing down of ancestral memories
the body becomes the container for this information
the body fills with the pain of slavery, the passion of love,
the struggles of the human spirit, the labor of identity
this passing on is liquid, thick, porous,
moving into the core of our muscles
utterly still and yet cascading over our hearts into the depths of our being
resounding in our inner ear made vocal through outer words
igniting our souls with legacies we know
legacies we don’t want to know
legacies we take on
D UNDERBELLY is an urban rite of RE-remembering:

a rite of embodying the dignity of a people
the memory of a nation
like song it propels us into states of ecstasy and fear
empowering us to truly bask
in the multiplicity of colors, emotions and
that have permeated our culture
these legacies are liquid because they continue
to flow through us
around us
up and down our spine
titillating our minds with thoughts of


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