animals & giraffes
Saturday, Oct 8 2016
8:30 PM - 10:30 PM

animals & giraffes

Saturday, October 8

8:30 p.m.

Collaboration is central to animals & giraffes, which Phillip Greenlief (reeds) & Claudia La Rocco (text, voice) formed to explore improvisation on and off the page. Since 2013, Greenlief and La Rocco have played numerous duo performances and worked with a range of musicians; their debut album, JULY, is forthcoming from Relative Pitch Records. For this low-key studio showing, their ongoing conversation between sound and text will expand for the first time to include movement, as Greenlief and La Rocco are joined by the choreographer-dancers Laurel Jenkins and Jmy James Kidd.

Performers: Phillip Greenlief, Laurel Jenkins, Jmy James Kidd & Claudia La Rocco

Lighting by Carol McDowell

Admission is FREE, or your non-monetary donation to the FREE bar or the FREE boutique. Suggested items include: dancer snacks (apples, jars of nut butter, nuts), nice vacuum for the studio, Macbook pro charging cord, Mini fridge, coffee, wine, gaff tape in any color, pens, markers, printer paper for the studio, tea, art/dance books for our library, beers.

Clip of animals & giraffes performing at The Lab this fall


 Since his emergence on the west coast in the late 1970s, saxophonist/composer Phillip Greenlief has achieved international critical acclaim for his recordings and performances with musicians and composers in the post-jazz continuum as well as new music innovators and virtuosic improvisers. He has performed and recorded with Fred Frith, Meredith Monk and They Might Be Giants; albums include THAT OVERT DESIRE OF OBJECT with Joelle Leandre, and ALL AT ONCE with FPR (Frank Gratkowski, Jon Raskin, Phillip Greenlief). Recent residences have included Headlands Center for the Arts and from 2012-2014 he was the curator at Berkeley Arts, a home for progressive music. He is the recipient of a San Francisco Bay Guardian Goldie Award. “The Bay Area’s do-it-yourself ethos has produced a bevy of dazzlingly creative musicians, but few have put the philosophy to work as effectively as Phillip Greenlief.” Albert Gilbert, San Francisco Chronicle (

Laurel Jenkins is a Los Angeles based choreographer, dancer, and teacher.  As a member of the Trisha Brown Dance Company from 2007­-2012, she developed original roles in Brown’s final works.  She continues to perform and restage pieces for the company.  Jenkins has also danced with Sara Rudner, Florence Peake, and Vicky Shick.  Her work has been presented in Los Angeles at RedCat, Automata, Pieter, Highways, the Electric Lodge, the Getty Center, and the Fowler Museum, and in New York at Danspace Project, and the 92nd Street Y, and in Berlin’s Performing Presence Improvisation Festival, and Tokyo’s Sezane Art Gallery.  She has been commissioned to choreograph for LA Contemporary Dance Company, and The Wooden Floor.  With the support of the Asian Cultural Council, Jenkins traveled to Phnom Penh, Cambodia this year to work with Chey Chankethya, and Amrita Performing Arts.  She received a BA from Sarah Lawrence College, an MFA from UCLA, and is certified in the Skinner Releasing Technique.

Jmy James Kidd has lived and worked in Los Angeles, CA since 2009. She choreographs dances with The Sunland Dancers, collaborates with musician Tara Jane ONeil, runs a performance space called Pieter and makes garments as James Kidd Studio. In NYC she danced for luciana achugar, Nancy Meehan, Stanley Love, Sarah Michelson, Walter Dundervill, Neil Greenberg and apprenticed with the Cunningham Company. 

Claudia La Rocco is a writer whose work frequently revolves around interdisciplinary projects and collaborations. She is the author of The Best Most Useless Dress (Badlands Unlimited), selected poetry, performance texts, images and criticism, and the novel petit cadeau, published by The Chocolate Factory Theater as a print edition of one and a four-day, interdisciplinary live edition. She edited I Donʼt Poem: An Anthology of Painters (Off the Park Press) and Dancers, Buildings and People in the Streets, the catalogue for Danspace Projectʼs PLATFORM 2015, which she curated. She has been presented by The Walker Art Center, The Kitchen, The Whitney Museum of American Art, et al; received grants from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and Creative Capital/Warhol Foundation; and had residencies at such places as Headlands Center for the Arts, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and On the Boards theater. She is editor-in-chief of SFMOMA’s Open Space.

Photo Credits:

Blue room: animals & giraffes performing a quartet at The Lab, June 10th, 2016, joined by electronic musician John Bischoff and percussionist Karen Stackpole. Photo: Michael Zelner.

Fringe photo: Photo by Joanne Kim of Sunland Dancers (from L to R, Jmy Kidd, Lisa Wahlander) at Hauser Wirth & Schimmel July 2016. 

Photos of Laurel Jenkins by Marilia Destot

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