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Sleepdance Presents: White With Some Color

The choreography for “White with Some Color” was originally inspired by Stephanie Griffin’s recording of her multi-tracked viola arrangement of Tony Prabowo's choral work Doa Persembunyian (A Prayer for Refuge) and Magritte’s painting “The Lovers”. For the WiredArts Fest, seven violists performed the arrangement live and be integrated into the existing choreography of the piece. The choreography uses minimal movement, an altered sense of time and a costume that connects the performers, displaying the effect an individual’s actions can have on a group and the marks that remain when the connection is cut. The total work is 16 minutes in length.

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Although instrumental music and dance have absorbed the text, the project also has a literary component. Prabowo’s music, originally for mixed choir, is based on the poem “A Prayer for Refuge” by renowned Indonesian writer Goenawan Mohamad.

Oh, my Lord who has vanished
into the wooden walls
so dark, as dark as tobacco,
let me hide thy name,
let me shelve my hunger,
my fear,
my sword.

(last lines of Goenawan Mohamad’s poem “A Prayer for Refuge” )

The ominous tone of Tony Prabowo’s composition speaks to the intention of the performers and foreshadows the coming climax. The final section and conclusion of the work uses recorded traditional court gamelan music and ties Tony Prabowo’s composition, the seven violists, the dancers and the poem together.


Stephanie Sleeper holds a B.F.A. in Modern Dance from the University of Utah and works as a freelance performer, choreographer and costume designer.  She co-produces Studio A.I.R., a monthly experimental performance series and her choreography has been presented in NTHCC’s Happening Series, at Joe’s Pub, The New York City Greek Film Festival, Fuse (On Demand), Music at Gretna, dança em foco – International Festival of Video Dance in 2012, Triskelion Arts, The Festival of New Musics, The Women’s Art Center, as well as Raw Material, Waxworks, Studio A.I.R. and Williamsburg Freefest.

Tony Prabowo was born in Malang, Indonesia in 1956 and began his formal studies in music under the guidance of the widely acclaimed composer Slamet Abdul Sjukur.  The founder of the New Jakarta Ensemble in 1996, he has received important grants from Meet the Composer, the Ford Foundation and the Asian Cultural Council, under whose auspice he lived in New York from October 1997 to April 1998.  He has often collaborated with artists from other disciplines and is currently the curator for music and dance at Komunitas Salihara and is preparing his third opera.

John Beasant III holds an MFA degree in dance from the University of Utah. John is a current member of the Brian Brooks Moving Company based in NYC.  He also regularly teaches, performs, and presents his own dances with various companies, universities, and festivals.  John is a former member of Doug Varone and Dancers (2001-2010) and guest artist with the José Limón Dance Company (2008-2010).  Other company credits include: Gallim Dance, Shapiro and Smith Dance, Keith Johnson/Dancers, The Metropolitan Opera, and Company XIV.  John has most recently held guest artist residencies at the American University and the University of Utah.

Keisha Bolden is a Harlem based dancer, writer, fitness professional, andyogi.  She received her early dance training at The University of North Carolina School of the Arts and studied writing at The New School University where she received her B.A. Keisha has performed the company works of Lori Belilove & Company at The Isadora Duncan Foundation, Blue Wing Dance Company, and Phoenix Rising Dance Creations and worked with Mark Diamond, Maryse Jacobs, Liz Sargent, Catherine Bay, and Cleo Parker-Robinson.  Keisha’s lifetime mission is to do anything and everything that allows her to incorporate her love for aesthetic movement, human interaction, playfulness, and positive vibes.

A highly sought-after violist, Eva Gerard has played solo recitals in such celebrated venues as The Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts and Juilliard’s Paul Hall. As an orchestral and chamber musician, Ms. Gerard has performed in Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, BAM Café, Merkin Hall, MoMA’s Summergarden, Le Poisson Rouge, and Lincoln Center’s Rose Theatre. She has studied with Junah Chung, Samuel Rhodes, and Masao Kawasaki. Eva completed her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees at The Juilliard School and is currently a doctoral candidate at the CUNY Graduate Center where she studies with Karen Ritscher and Junah Chung.

David Gold has played a lot of different kinds of music with a lot of really cool people in various places throughout the world.  He has done this mostly on the viola.

Praised by the New York Times for her “fiery, full-throttle performance” and described as “enthralling” by the Los Angeles Times, violist Stephanie Griffin is an active classical, contemporary and avant-jazz performer. She plays regularly as a soloist and with the Momenta Quartet, Continuum, the Argento Chamber Ensemble, Carl Maguire’s Floriculture, Gordon Beeferman’s Other Life Forms, and numerous other ensembles. Ms. Griffin has recorded for Firehouse 12, Aeon, Albany, Koch, Arte Nova, Centaur and Siam Records and holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from The Juilliard School, where she studied with Samuel Rhodes.

William Hakim is principal of the New York Symphonic Ensemble, the Ossia Orchestra, the Glens Falls Symphony, a member of the EnsembleLPR at Le Poisson Rouges, and also plays with the New Jersey Symphony, the Iris Orchestra in Memphis, and Albany Symphony, has recorded for several tv and film scores, currently teaches at Skidmore College and Seton Hall University and was faculty at Brevard Music Center and St Rose College. He studied with Samuel Rhodes at Juilliard, John Graham at Eastman, and Paul Neubauer at Cuny Graduate Center, where he’s pursuing his doctorate. He likes to ski and is pretty into yoga lately.  

Adam Matthes performed with the Cascade Quartet and the quartet in residence with the Great Falls Symphony from 2009-2012. He has frequented the Aspen Music Festival as both an orchestral and contemporary ensemble fellow, performances of which have been heard on Performance Today, and he has performed in the Chintimini Chamber Music Festival, Spoleto Festival USA, and the AIMS Festival. He has recorded music of Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon on Bridge Records and music of Carlos Sanchez-Gutierrez on the Urtext label. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music and the Shepherd School of Music, he studied with John Graham and James Dunham.

Acclaimed for her “polish, focus, and excitement” (Allan Kozinn, The New York Times), violist Jessica Meyer is a versatile performer who has been featured as a soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral player throughout the world.  As a committed advocate of new music, Ms. Meyer is the co-founder of the critically-acclaimed contemporary music collective counter)induction, and has premiered and written pieces for solo viola. Jessica is also the founder of Piaclava (a touring clarinet, viola, and piano trio) and has performed with ensembles such as the Either/Or Ensemble, the Argento Chamber Ensemble, the Gotham Chamber Opera, The Perspectives Ensemble, Continuum, and Classical Jam.

Liz Sargent has been doing this and that for quite some time. Liz started out doing arts admin in the city, then creating her own performances at venues like LMCC Sitelines, Danspace Project, The Chocolate Factory, Piccolo Spoletto and Mount Tremper Arts. She has made costumes for Aynsley Vandenbrouke and Adrienne Westwood, danced with Jonah Boaker and Stephanie Sleeper, and is a performer for Jim Findlay in Botanica and his new work Dream of the Red Chamber.  If you want to see the random resume and experiences of Ms Sargent, check out her website at Yea!!

Diane Lynn Skerbec is from Cleveland, Ohio, began dancing at age 8 with Savelli’s Dance and Martial Arts and graduated from Kent State University Cum Laude with a BFA in Dance Performance and Choreography.  She represented Kent State University at ADF Festivals 2010-12 and has performed works by Cynthia Gutierrez-Garner, Jenny Sandoval Eccher, Robert Davidson, Jacqulyn Buglisi, Daniel Bernard Roumain, Ayodele Casel, and Sabatino Verlezza. Currently a company member of Kinetic Architecture and a scholarship student of Jennifer Muller/The Works, Diane also teaches and performs with Dance Around the World and is a certified yoga instructor.

Violeta Tellez is originally from Mexico City where she started her dance training in Graham Technique.  She has performed with Danza Contemporanea Universitaria UNAM in 2002 and “Mujeres en la Danza” International Dance Festival in Quito, Ecuador in 2006.  In New York, she performed for a podcast “People” with Flexicurve in 2008, with Nu Dance Theater for the site specific “Hinterland” in 2009 and also as a dancer for Stephanie Sleeper, Mario Bermudez Gil and Carmen Caceres.  In 2010, she premiered two solos, which she choreographed and performed: “Tiny Noises” and “Move on”.

Dr. David Wallace is an internationally-touring musician, an award-winning composer, a Grammy-nominated performer, a champion Texas fiddler, a Juilliard professor, and a master teaching artist who has performed, consulted and authored curricula for dozens of performing arts institutions.  A short list of David’s clients and presenters includes Carnegie Hall, the New York Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, The Chamber Society of Lincoln Center, UNESCO, and Young Audiences. Hear more at

sleepdance live streamed dance with live violas

Stephanie Sleeper

Tony Prabowo (arranged for viola by Stephanie Griffin)
Java Court Gamelan (arranged for viola by Gordon Beeferman)

Costumes: Stephanie Sleeper

Keisha Bolden
Eva Gerard
Stephanie Griffin
William Hakim
Jessica Meyer
Liz Sargent
Diane Skerbec
Violeta Tellez