Awardee: Millicent Johnnie

Performing Arts, 2013

Millicent Johnnie, a native of Lafayette, LA, received both her BFAand MFA in dance at Florida State University. She toured as resident choreographer and rehearsal director of the Urban Bush Women in New York City and has served as a choreographer for the New York City Opera, U.S. Cultural Ambassadors of Music, The Krannert Performance Arts Center, Grammy Award-winner Bill Summers, Los Hombres Caliente, and notable directors Peter Sellars, Rhodessa Jones and Chey Yew, to name a few. Millicent’s choreography has been featured by Cleo Parker-Robinson Dance, Hubbard Street II, The Alternate ROOTS Cultural Tour (Uprooted: The Katrina Project) and ESPN. Her work has been presented at venues such as Danspace Project,DANCENOW NYC, Dance Harlem, Joyce   Soho, Kennedy Center Millennium Stage, The Yard at Lincoln Center, International Association for Blacks in Dance Conference (2000-02) and The New Orleans Jazz Dance Project. Johnnie teaches on the dance faculty at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX.

Project: Cry You One

Travel to the communities of Southeast Louisiana and witness how a woman's fingers are the last vestiges of the earth she once tilled; her palms hold the final memory of a certain marsh. Louisiana is disappearing. It is breaking apart into the sea. The Gulf of Mexico, aided by sinking land and rising seas, has been swallowing this region at such a horrifying rate that a coastline that was a long-day’s boat ride away just 30 years ago may soon be the backdoor to the city of New Orleans.

Cry You One is an outdoor performance and online platform inspired by the disappearing wetlands of Southeast Louisiana.  Created by the award winning New Orleans companies ArtSpot Productions and Mondo Bizarro, Cry You One celebrates the people and cultures of Louisiana while turning a clear eye towards communities throughout the United States that are currently impacted by man-made or natural environmental concerns. Part song, part story, part procession for our lost land, Cry You One utilizes the unique music and stories of Louisiana to inspire connections between people working to steward the natural world wherever they live.

Collab: Mondo Bizarro

Mondo Bizarro has been creating original, multidisciplinary art and fostering partnerships in local, national and international communities for the last eleven years. We are a group of artists that have committed to labor as an ensemble over several years with the goal of establishing a body of work inspired by a particular set of commonly shared aesthetic and civic values. We are a collective of individuals that create, present and produce a wide array of imaginative projects aimed at utilizing art as a tool for understanding what makes us commonly human and individually unique. Our work is intentionally multidisciplinary, ranging from physical theater to large-scale community festivals; from social media to site-specific productions. Everything we do is fueled by the desire to develop brave new works of art that illuminate the beauty and travails of the human condition.