Shall We Gather at the River

World Premiere, Co-Commissioned by Park Avenue Armory and Asia Society Center on U.S.-China Relations

Tuesday, May 21, 2024 at 7:30pm

Wade Thompson Drill Hall at Park Avenue Armory

Molly Quinn Soprano 
Reginald Mobley Countertenor
Nick Pritchard Tenor 
Jonathan Woody Bass-baritone
Wu Tong Sheng
Oxford Bach Soloists
The Choir of Trinity Wall Street
Tom Hammond-Davies Conductor 
Peter Sellars Direction
Reggie (Regg Roc) Gray and members of the flexn community Choreography
Seth Reiser Set and Lighting Design
Mark Grey Sound Design
Leah Thompson, Jeroen de Vries Projection Design

Deidra “Dayntee” Braz, Quamaine “Virtuoso” Daniels, Reggie (Regg Roc) Gray, Derick “Spectacular Slicc” Murreld, Andre “Dre Don” Redman Dancers

Presented in conjunction with COAL + ICE, exhibition on view at Asia Society through August 11, 2024

This program runs approximately 90 minutes and is dedicated to the memory of David Breashears, Joe Harkins, Baifang Schell, and Patricia Sellars.

Armory Sponsors

Citi and Bloomberg Philanthropies are the Armory's 2024 Season Sponsors.

Support for Park Avenue Armory’s artistic season has been generously provided by the Thompson Family Foundation, Charina Endowment Fund, the Donald A. Pels Charitable Trust, The Shubert Foundation, Wescustogo Foundation, the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, the Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation, the Howard Gilman Foundation, the Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, the Marc Haas Foundation, Mary W. Harriman Foundation, the Reed Foundation, the Leon Levy Foundation, the May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation, Gregory Annenberg Weingarten, GRoW @ Annenberg, The Emma and Georgina Bloomberg Foundation, the Richenthal Foundation, and the Isak and Rose Weinman Foundation. Additional support has been provided by the Armory’s Artistic Council. Public support is provided by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature as well as the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council under the leadership of Speaker Adrienne Adams.


Chinese sheng processional

J.S. Bach: Brich dem Hungrigen dein Brot (Break with hungry men thy bread), Cantata BWV 39
1. “Brich dem Hungrigen dein Brot”
2. “Der reiche Gott wirft seinen Überfluß auf uns”
3. “Seinem Schöpfer noch auf Erden”

Black American Spiritual: “Let us break bread together on our knees”

J.S. Bach: Brich dem Hungrigen dein Brot (Break with hungry men thy bread), Cantata BWV 39
4. “Wohlzutun und mitzuteilen”
5. “Höchster, was ich habe, ist nur deine Gabe”
6. “Wie soll ich dir, o Herr, denn sattsamlich vergelten”

Black American Spiritual: “Po' Mourners Got a Home at Last”

J.S. Bach: Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig (Ah how transient, ah how futile), Cantata BWV 26
1. “Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig”
2. "So schnell ein rauschend Wasser schießt"
3. “Die Freude wird zur Traurigkeit”

Black American Spiritual: “Can't you live humble?”

J.S. Bach: Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig (Ah how transient, ah how futile), Cantata BWV 26
4. “An irdische Schätze das Herze zu hängen”
5. “Die höchste Herrlichkeit und Pracht”

J.S. Bach: O Ewigkeit, du Donnerwort (O eternity, you word of thunder), Cantata BWV 20
1. “O Ewigkeit, du Donnerwort”
2. “Kein Unglück ist in aller Welt zu finden”
3. “Ewigkeit, du machst mir bange”
4. “Gesetzt, es dau'rte der Verdammten Qual”
5. “Gott ist gerecht in seinen Werken”
6. “O Mensch, errette deine Seele”

Black American Spiritual: “By an' By”

J.S. Bach: O Ewigkeit, du Donnerwort (O eternity, you word of thunder), Cantata BWV 20
8. “Wacht auf, wacht auf, verlornen Schafe”
9. “Verlass, o Mensch, die Wollust dieser Welt”

Black American Spiritual: “Sinner, please don't let this harvest pass”

J.S. Bach: O Ewigkeit, du Donnerwort (O eternity, you word of thunder), Cantata BWV 20
10. “O Menschenkind, hör auf geschwind”

Notes from the Creative Team

"The details and consequences of serious shifts in our atmosphere, in the health of our soil and water, and the accelerating extinction of species across the last three decades—our lifetimes—can and must be described in technical and scientific language. But what the natural world is signaling to the human race is so much more demanding and direct—we are not living well. We need to stop, regroup, reorient, reassess, and redirect our most basic life choices. Every mind-blowing Bach cantata is moment of refuge and renewal, a 12-step program for personal and social transformation, redirection, recovery, and healing in language and music that is inspiring, empowering, personal, urgent, and true. The African American tradition of Spirituals and Gospel music is the music of survival itself, collective moral power, crossing the Red Sea and the River Jordan, from life to death to new life and renewed purpose on the other side." — Peter Sellars, Director 

“In this momentous project, we transcend time and space to bring Bach’s eternal music into the contemporary world, addressing pressing global issues. Bach’s universal perspective illuminates the shared human experience of our planet, our collective home. As we unite from three continents to deliver this vital, existential message, we embrace the profound responsibility of awakening minds and hearts. It is an immense honor to collaborate with Peter Sellars and the Asia Society in this transformative project at the Armory. I am incredibly proud to be making our US debut in New York, delivering this timely message to audiences far and wide.” — Tom Hammond-Davies, Oxford Bach Soloists Artistic Director

"The connection between Bach cantatas and African American spirituals may not seem immediately obvious. Not unless you start from the beginning. The years 1618 and 1619 started, in succession, the beginnings of the 30 Years War and the institution of Slavery in America. The ripples of these horrible periods would completely change the flow of human history. Yet, like the formation of pearls, music would appear as a balm to help process and contextualize the indescribable pain and confusion that underscored the lives of Central Europeans and African Slaves (echoes of which still beleaguer Black Americans to this day). But the power and resilience fostered by the music that evolved from these two events is evergreen. They contain messages of strength and hope of God and our ancestors that, if heeded, will embolden and rally us in a time where waters rise at pace with despair. This music reminds us that just as waters and sorrow rise, so does the sun. And if we seek to understand each other and our shared humanity, we can act now to ensure that the coming tomorrow *can* be better." — Reginald Mobley, countertenor

"What does the music of J.S. Bach have in common with climate change and American spirituals? Both are heartfelt musical expressions of the frailty of life and the abuses humans too often heap on each other and our planet. Climate change is this era’s most urgent common challenge, and yet, the U.S. and China, the largest contributors to global warming find themselves unable to cooperate. Sometimes music is the only solvent. In Shall We Gather at the River, the ancient Chinese reed instrument, the sheng () –traditionally seen as a mediator between humans and the heaven (), harkening what is transcendent – will symbolically lead a ceremonial procession into our concert hall as a way of suggesting the urgency of taking joint action." —  Orville Schell, Asia Society Vice President and Arthur Ross Director of the Center on U.S.-China Relations

Our Collective Future: Student Exploration of Themes from Shall We Gather at the River

What is sacred to you? How can we act as caretakers of our planet and each other? How do you imagine the future? These questions are at the heart of the student explorations of Shall We Gather at the River that happened this spring through Park Avenue Armory’s Arts Education programs. 

Over 600 middle and high school students attended the world premiere of this multi-disciplinary meditation, with their student matinee being the first time the piece was performed for an audience. Shall We Gather is the fifth Peter Sellars production with which we have had the opportunity to engage students at the Armory, enabling a deep trust in one another’s processes and ways of inviting young people into the work. His trademark open questions provided plentiful inspiration for in-school workshops. In pre-visit workshops, students were offered natural elements—coal, ice, heat, wind—to create communal visual art murals. Throughout the artmaking, they contemplated how they interacted with each element—what they could control, what felt welcoming, what felt uncomfortable, and how much intervention each element could withstand. These personal explorations then pivoted into introductions of the artists and disciplines and themes of climate change at play in Shall We Gather, and an invitation to identify “what is sacred to YOU.” Post-visit workshops will allow time to reflect on their experience at the Armory and then expand the notion of caretaking our planet to include the caretaking of what feels sacred to each student. Kinesthetic and visual explorations will encourage students to turn the “what” into “how”, ending with a ritual gathering. This exploration has been part of the Armory’s Production-Based Programming, which invites school groups to experience the Armory’s unconventional works of music, theater, dance, and visual arts in conjunction with workshops co-facilitated by multi-disciplinary Teaching Artists. 

The Armory’s Youth Corps Program offers paid and closely mentored internship programs for students ages 16 to 25+. This spring, Youth Corps conducted a project inspired by Shall We Gather at the River, which is present for the public to engage with this evening. The Armory’s high school Youth Corps interns began their spring semester exploring the concept of installation art, keying into interactive elements within installations, and visited the Asia Society to experience the COAL + ICE exhibition. These investigations, coupled with the provocation of imagined futures, inspired two intergenerational workshops that explored how people of all ages think about the future—our educational future, our technological future, our climate future, our artistic future, our social future. Through music and dance, the Youth Corps led conversations to inspire their own installation, Tomorrow and Hereafter, that is open to the public to engage with and contribute to. 

The pressing issue of climate change is an omnipresent reality for today’s young people. And while gathering together to advocate for meaningful legislation is certainly one part of the puzzle, Shall We Gather at the River offers another, just as important, way forward. Gathering together around art encourages us to listen, to contemplate, and to connect, and is its own kind of potent advocacy.

Tomorrow and Hereafter: A Youth Corps Installation

Tomorrow and Hereafter is a culmination of imagined futures brought together by the thoughts and opinions of those around us created by Park Avenue Armory's Youth Corps, members of the Armory’s year-round paid internship program. Students in this spring's Youth Corps cohort come from five New York City partner schools—Bronx Envision Academy, International High School at Prospect Heights, Talent Unlimited, Vanguard High School, Williamsburg High School for Architecture & Design—and are immersed in the art and creative processes of the Armory’s artists through art workshop, job and career training, leadership development, and essential communication and life skills. Upon graduation, Youth Corps members have continued access to paid employment opportunities that support their personal and professional goals. 

Youth Corps members collected and documented opinions on our imagined future by creating art with community members of all ages and interviewing them through open-ended conversation. From the information collected, the Youth Corps created opposing artworks dividing the ideas of a utopian and dystopian future. Using sound, smell, images, quotes, and poetry, Youth Corps created an interactive world that reflects the future where participants can share their own views and ideas on how they imagine the future. The installation is comprised of a soundscape, film collage, photo wall, and banner. 

Please join us in the Veterans Room before or after the performance to experience these immersive works of imagined futures, where students and staff from the Youth Corps program will be on hand to discuss their works with audiences. 


This soundscape highlights the interaction of younger and older voices and perspectives that reflect the imagined utopian and dystopian future world. The structure tells a story of what the future can be and how we hope to achieve or overcome it. The soundscape plays out loud in the space and headsets offer a more direct experience with the soundscape. Listen to the soundscape on SoundCloud here.

Film Collage

This intergenerational silent short film creatively captures discussions about imagined futures from individuals of all ages and invites viewers to discuss how they imagine the future in their next conversation.

“To Be Determined”

The hanging banner incorporates the vision of the future from opposing perspectives. The banner includes two poems – one depicts harsh realities of the human experience and the other depicts the desire for a positive reality. Both sides showcase quotes and phrases from intergenerational discussions about the future (conducted by Youth Corps) and are adorned with a variety of flowers. 

“Two Sides of a Coin”

The photo wall shows the two possibilities of our future on either side. Youth Corps created 10 opposing photos that represent the chaos and tranquility of their futuristic expectations. Individuals are invited to choose the side they believe will likely be our future, take a Polaroid and write their opinion of the future on the back, and either take it with them or add it to the installation, empowering audience members to know that it is up to everyone to decide what future we want through our actions.

About the Artists

Molly Quinn (Soprano)

Molly Quinn delights audiences with “a voice that blooms like ink in clear water” (Cleveland Classical Review). She has collaborated with bright and innovative musicians, including The Knights NYC, Portland Baroque Orchestra, Apollo’s Fire, The Folger Consort, Clarion Music Society, The Bang on a Can All-Stars, TENET, Trinity Wall Street, Saint Thomas Fifth Avenue, Duke Performing Arts, Pacific Baroque Orchestra, Bach Collegium San Diego, Seraphic Fire, Acronym, and Death of Classical. She has been featured in numerous projects by presenters including The Lincoln Center White Lights Festival, Moscow’s Gold Mask Festival, BAM Next Wave Festival, Bang on a Can marathon, and Carnegie Hall’s Venetian Festival. Quinn has appeared as a soloist in noted national and international venues including Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, Shostakovich Hall in St Petersburg, Teatro National de Costa Rica, Vancouver’s Chan Centre, and San Cristobal Cathedral in Havana. She appears as soloist on the Grammy-nominated recording of Handel’s Israel in Egypt with The Choir of Trinity Wall Street. BFA, MFA; CCM.

Reginald Mobley (Countertenor)

American countertenor Reginald Mobley is renowned for baroque, classical and modern repertoire interpretations. Orchestral performances with: Pittsburgh Symphony; Philadelphia, Minnesota, Philadelphia, Birmingham orchestras; Chicago, Boston Symphony Orchestras; Philharmonia and Holland Baroque Orchestras; Early Music Vancouver; Collegium San Diego; Seraphic Fire; Tanglewood Festival; Orchestre Métropolitain de Montreal; Orchester Wiener Akademie, Balthasar Neumann Chor & Ensemble; Freiburger Barockorchester; I Barocchisti, Bach Society in Stuttgart; Dutch Bach Society; Monteverdi Choir; English Baroque Soloists; and Budapest Festival Orchestra; among others. With the Academy of Ancient Music in Cambridge, Mobley sang Disinganno in Il trionfo del Tempo e del Disinganno and devised the new touring program Sons of England. Recitals: Miller Theatre; Collaborative Arts Institute; Bayreuth Baroque Opera Festival; York, Liverpool, and Aix-en-Provence and BBC Proms festivals with pianist Baptiste Trotignon. Recordings: solo album Because (ALPHA Classics, 2023); albums with the Monteverdi Choir, Agave Baroque, Stuttgart Bach Society. Positions include: Programming Consultant, Handel & Haydn Society; and Visiting Artist for Diversity Outreach, Apollo’s Fire. He is also leading a research project in the UK funded by the AHRC to uncover music by composers from diverse backgrounds.

Nick Pritchard (Tenor)

Tenor Nick Pritchard has performed in concert with Ensemble Pygmalion; Concerto Köln; Les Talens Lyriques; Les Violons du Roy; L’Orchestre du Chambre de Paris; Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment; English Concert; Early Opera Company; BBC National Orchestra of Wales; Flemish Radio Choir; Gabrieli Consort; Monteverdi Choir and Orchestra; Stavanger Symfoniorkester; Residentie Orkest, Irish Baroque; Finnish Radio Symphony; Academy of Ancient Music; the Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic, St Paul Chamber, Antwerp Symphony, and Netherlands Chamber orchestras; and at the BBC Proms. Operatic appearances at: Opera North, Aldeburgh Festival, Glyndebourne on Tour, Irish National Opera, Opera Holland Park, Royal Opera House, Opéra de Lille, Théâtre de Caen, Opera Vlaandern, l’Opéra Royal de Versailles, and Grand Theatre Luxembourg. He has worked with conductors George Benjamin, Harry Bicket, John Butt, Laurence Cummings, Jonathan Cohen, Christian Curnyn, Richard Egarr, Maxim Emelyanychev, Adam Fischer, Emmanuelle Haïm, Simon Halsey, George Petrou, Raphaël Pichon, Christophe Rousset, Sir András Schiff, Masato Suzuki, Peter Whelan, and Ryan Wigglesworth. Recital appearances at Wigmore Hall, BBC Radio 3, and the Edinburgh International, Oxford International Song, Leeds Lieder, Ryedale, Lammermuir, and Two Mores festivals. Recordings include: Bach's St John Passion with Sir John Elliot Gardiner (Deutsche Grammophon, Grammy nomination).

Jonathan Woody (Bass-baritone)

Bass-baritone Jonathan Woody is a highly sought-after composer and performer. He has been featured with historically-informed orchestras such as Apollo’s Fire, Boston Early Music Festival, Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Bach Collegium San Diego, Portland Baroque Orchestra, and New York Baroque Incorporated, earning praise as “charismatic,” “riveting,” and “wonderfully dramatic.” Also, an avid performer of new music, Woody has premiered works including Ellen Reid's p r i s m (2019 Pulitzer Prize winner), Ted Hearne's The Source, Missy Mazzoli’s Breaking the Waves (NYC premiere), and Du Yun’s Angel’s Bone (2017 Pulitzer Prize winner). He has appeared with Staunton Music Festival, Aldeburgh Festival, Portland Bach Festival, Carmel Bach Festival, Oregon Bach Festival, Opera Lafayette, Opera Idaho, Gotham Chamber Opera, and Beth Morrison Projects. Woody has recorded with the Choir of Trinity Wall Street (Musica Omnia), Boston Early Music Festival (RadioBremen), and New York Polyphony (BIS Records).

Wu Tong (Sheng)

Wu Tong is his generation’s most visible proponent of traditional Chinese music. As Founding Vocalist of Lunhui, China’s pioneering rock band merging the energy of rock music with Asian musical aesthetics, Wu has gained an unparalleled following for Chinese music on three continents. In 1999, Wu became a founding member of the Silk Road Ensemble with Yo-Yo Ma. In 2010, Wu won his first Grammy, Best Classical Crossover Album for his work on Yo-Yo Ma & Friends: Songs of Joy & Peace. In 2017, Wu and the Silk Road Ensemble took home the Grammy for Best World Music Album for Sing Me Home. In the same year, Wu was awarded the Asia Game Changer Award. An internationally renowned master of sheng, one of the oldest Chinese instruments, Wu has worked with Siemens to develop looping technology for a new electric sheng. In 2019, Wu became the music director of 2047 Apologue, a series of conceptual stage shows by Zhang Yimou that rethinks the dialogue between humanity, traditional music, arts, and advanced technologies like AI.

Oxford Bach Soloists

The Oxford Bach Soloists (OBS) is a Baroque ensemble whose ambition is to perform, in sequence, the complete canon of J.S. Bach’s vocal works over 12 years. Founded by Tom Hammond-Davies (Artistic Director) in 2017, OBS offers a unique musical experience that converges composer, performer, and audience. OBS’s mission is distinctive and pioneering; while there have been many recordings and performances of Bach’s complete vocal works, OBS is performing them chronologically, programmed in real-time, and set in the context for which they were conceived—for instance, as Bach would have with performers, instruments, and venues that echo the university and churches of his hometown of Leipzig. Bach’s music is community music. He was part of an extended network of musicians in northern Germany and today, OBS champions our local students, scholars, players, and soloists.

Anneke Scott Horn
Stephen Cutting Trumpet
Yu-Wei Hu Flute
Frances Norbury Oboe 1
Mark Baigent Oboe 2/Recorder
Fiona Last Oboe 3/Recorder
Mark Wilson Bassoon
Davina Clarke Leader
Iona Davies Violin 1
Carrie Krause Violin 1
Beatrice Scaldini Violin 2
Ellen Bundy Violin 2
Chloe Prendergast Violin 2
Francesca Gilbert Viola
George White Viola
Henrik Persson Cello
Alexander Jones Double Bass
Anhad Arora Harpsichord
Dónal McCann Organ

The Choir of Trinity Wall Street

Peerless interpreters of both early and new music, The Choir of Trinity Wall Street redefines 21st-century vocal music, breaking new ground with artistry “blazing with vigour” (The Times, London). Described as “thrilling” (The New Yorker) and “simply superb” (The New York Times), the choir has appeared at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The Shed, The Kennedy Center, Walt Disney Concert Hall, PROTOTYPE Festival, Montreal’s Salle Bourgie, Paris’s Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, and London’s Barbican Theatre with partners such as Bang on a Can All-Stars, the New York Philharmonic, and the Rolling Stones. Numerous recordings include Grammy Award-nominated Luna Pearl Woolf: Fire and Flood and Handel’s Israel in Egypt; as well world premiere recordings of Pulitzer Prize-winning works by Du Yun, Ellen Reid, and Julia Wolfe.

Elisse Albian 
Amber Evans
Motomi Tanaka
Amaranta Viera 

Clifton Massey 
Jonathan May 
Devony Smith 
Pamela Terry

Timothy Hodges 
Gregorio Taniguchi 
David Vanderwal
Tommy Wazelle 

Enrico Lagasca 
Brian Mextorf
Edmund Milly 
Neil Netherly

Tom Hammond-Davies (Conductor)

Since graduating in music from the University of Oxford, Tom Hammond-Davies has become a leading specialist in choral conducting. He studied with Paul Spicer at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire and has gone on to gain a reputation as one of the top choral conductors in the world. In 2015, he founded the Oxford Bach Soloists, a unique ensemble with a mission to perform the complete works of J.S. Bach chronologically, programmed in real-time, and in the context in which they were originally received—be that in terms of liturgical and ecclesiastical settings or instrument and choir positionings. Hammond-Davies leads the baroque ensemble and singers performing concerts that are heralded around the world, capturing the imagination of existing and new Bach enthusiasts as well as supporting the next generation of soloists.

Peter Sellars (Direction)

Opera, theater, and festival director Peter Sellars has gained international renown for his groundbreaking and transformative interpretations of classics, advocacy of 20th century and contemporary music, and collaborative projects with an extraordinary range of creative and performing artists. He has staged productions at the Dutch National Opera, English National Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Opéra national de Paris, and the Salzburg Festival, among others. Projects include: John Adams’ Nixon in China, The Death of Klinghoffer, El Niño, Doctor Atomic; Kaija Saariaho’s L’Amour de loin, Only the Sound Remains; Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde with video artist Bill Viola; Handel’s Theodora, Hercules; Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito, Idomeneo; Euripides’ The Children of Herakles; Desdemona with novelist Toni Morrison and Malian composer/singer Rokia Traoré. Park Avenue Armory: Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with the Berliner Philharmoniker, FLEXN, FLEXN Evolution, Monochromatic Light (Afterlife). Awards and positions: MacArthur Fellowship; Erasmus, Gish, and Polar Music prizes; Professor, World Arts and Cultures/Dance, UCLA; Resident Curator, Telluride Film Festival; leader, 1990 and 1993 Los Angeles, 2002 Adelaide Arts, and 2016 Ojai Music festivals; Artistic Director, Vienna’s 2006 New Crowned Hope; member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Reggie (Regg Roc) Gray (Choreography)

Brooklyn-born dancer and choreographer Reggie (Regg Roc) Gray is the pioneer of hybrid dance genre flexn: a combination of styles from the local scene such as bone breaking, gliding, get-low, connecting, hat tricks, punchlines, and pauzin, the flex style he revolutionized. Drawing on Brooklyn’s Jamaican street styles bruk up and dancehall, the style was named after TV program Flex N Brooklyn. Gray has won several top dance titles, danced for America’s Best Dance Crew and in music videos for Wayne Wonder, Sean Paul, Nicki Minaj, and others. Gray performs with his award-winning dance crew RingMasters and new dance company The D.R.E.A.M. RING (Dance Rules Everything Around Me). He has choreographed FLEXN, FLEXN Evolution, and Monochromatic Light (Afterlife) at Park Avenue Armory, touring to the Brisbane, Marseille, Napoli Teatro, and Jacob’s Pillow festivals, as well as Princeton and Dartmouth. Other works include: choreographic contributions to Public Works; The Odyssey at The Public; a residency at National Sawdust; and Flex Ave. Gray is currently developing a new dance production and documentary, Infinite.


Deidra “Dayntee” Braz was born and raised in Flatbush, Brooklyn, having a strong influence and shaping her into what she is today by parents that gave her the space, freedom, and upbringing to allow her to become who she is today. Dance has been an integral part of her life since the age of 6, introducing her to the meaning and feeling of passion, artistic expression, and allowing the opportunity to travel across the world to perform and teach. Over the last few years, she continues to grow in her artistry and has begun to look towards artistic directing and creating in different artistic ways.


Quamaine Daniels, also known as “Virtuoso”, is a Brooklyn-based master of flexn. He has been flexn since 2004 and started professionally in 2015. His flexn styles are gliding, get low, bone breaking, and connecting. He has performed and toured around the world with The D.R.E.A.M. Ring and has been a part of FLEXN: Evolution, Alphabus, and most recently Maze productions. Virtuoso is also a teacher of the arts. From street dance to street art, Daniels has always been inspired by the arts. He is currently working on various paintings that fuse flexn and his unique drawing style to further connect with the art of flexn.


A street dancer born and raised in Brooklyn, Derick “Spectacular Slicc” Murreld is one of the pioneers of the style called “get low,” which is one of five elements of flexn. He does a mixture of bone breaking and body isolations, mixed with his get low. He has made a big impact on the culture and style of the dance form. His dance experience has brought him to LA, London, Iceland, Australia, New Zealand, Dubai, and other places. His 11-year career has included tours, campaigns, and music videos.

Andre “Dre Don” Redman (Dancer)

Born in Flatbush, Brooklyn, Andre “Dre Don” Redman began dancing at the age of five, starting with dance-hall Jamaican shotta movements and picking up flex at age 15. He joined Reggie (Regg Roc) Gray’s dance group The D.R.E.A.M. Ring in 2009, going on to perform with the group across New York and other venues. Redman has appeared in performances such as FLEXN (2015, Park Avenue Armory) and FLEXN Evolution (2017, Park Avenue Armory), among others. He dedicates his dance to his family, especially his mother, cousins Stephen and JD, sister Tracy, and brothers.

Seth Reiser (Lighting Design)

Seth Reiser is a set and lighting designer for theater, opera, dance and music whose work has been seen throughout the United States and internationally. At Park Avenue Armory, Reiser last designed the lighting for JS Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with the Berlin Philharmonic, directed by Peter Sellars. Other recent work includes Claude Vivier’s Kopernicus at Theatre Cardin in Paris with L’Instant Donné and Roomful of Teeth, directed by Peter Sellars; Ryuichi Sakamoto’s Kagami with Tin Drum at the Shed, directed by Todd Eckert; Alissa Weilerstein’s Fragments, directed by Elkhanah Pulitzer; Phillip Glass’ The Fall of the House of Usher at Festival Impulso in Mexico City directed by Robert J. Castro; Peter Eotvos’ Tri Sestri at the Ural Opera and Bolshoi Opera directed by Christopher Alden; the set and lighting design for Bernstein’s MASS at the LA Philharmonic and NY Philharmonic, directed by Elkhanah Pulitzer. Reiser holds an MFA from NYU/Tisch School of the Arts. 

Mark Grey (Sound Design)

Mark Grey is an Emmy Award-winning sound designer and composer who made history as the first sound designer for the New York Philharmonic (On the Transmigration of Souls, 2002, which also won the Pulitzer Prize in Music) and The Met Opera (Doctor Atomic, 2008; Nixon in China, 2011; Death of Klinghoffer, 2014; The Merry Widow, 2015; Bluebeard’s Castle/Iolanta, 2015; L’Amour de Loin, 2016). His grand opera, Frankenstein, recently premiered at La Monnaie in Brussels and his mobile chamber opera, Birds In The Moon, with the New York Philharmonic in 2021. He also has had several commissions from the Atlanta Symphony and Los Angeles Philharmonic. He has collaborated with composer John Adams and several others for nearly three decades. His sound designs have been heard throughout most major concert halls, HD simulcast theaters, and opera houses worldwide. Armory sound design credits include The Rite of Spring / common ground[s], Doppelganger, Euphoria, Assembly, The Shape of Things, and Deep Blue Sea, among others.

Leah Thompson (Projection Design)

Leah Thompson is a documentary filmmaker and producer based in Los Angeles. She is particularly interested in how creative communities, both historical and contemporary, foster social and environmental change. Her short documentary, How to Start Your Own Utopia, follows Ou Ning, a renowned Chinese artist, as he builds a utopian commune—equal parts art, anarchy, and back-to-the-land movement—in a dying village in rural Anhui province. The film has been included in exhibitions at the Guggenheim Museums in New York and Bilbao, as well as SFMOMA. She is currently in production on her first feature-length documentary on the life and legacy of pop artist, activist, and nun, Corita Kent. Thompson also produces COAL + ICE, an immersive documentary photography exhibition co-curated by Susan Meiselas and Jeroen de Vries. She holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in History from the University of California, Berkeley and San Francisco State University.

Jeroen de Vries (Projection Design)

Jeroen de Vries lives and works in Amsterdam and Belgrade. He works as a freelance designer, curator and teacher. In the 70s, De Vries made use of photography for political posters against the war in Vietnam and for the Polish trade union and movement Solidarnosc. In the 80s and 90s he created various photo exhibitions with social-historical and political subjects in major Dutch museums. Currently, De Vries experiments with the spatial representation of photography combining prints with audio visual projections on an international scale.

Production Credits


Angus Goodearl Assistant Lighting Design

Betsy Ayer Stage Manager
Gabrielle Giacomo Assistant Stage Manager

Kana Morita Company Manager
Amanda Harris Assistant Company Manager
Denivia Rivera, Silas Rodriguez, Adonai Fletcher-Jones Production Assistants, Programming
Ruby Carmel Production Assistant, Production

Carl Whipple Production Carpenter

Nick Houfek Lighting Supervisor
Dave “Tater” Polato Production Electrician
Taylor Jensen, Margaret Peebles Lighting Programmers

Andrew Lulling Audio Engineer
Jeffrey Rowell Production Audio

Daniel Santamaria Production Video
Celeste Alexander Supertitle Supervisor

Stephen Pucci Production Rigger

Theodore Sarge Seating Supervisor


BNW Rigging
Five Ohm Productions
Mind the Gap
Premier Stagehands
Lighting, Rigging, and Video Equipment by 4Wall Entertainment
Audio Equipment by Masque Sound
Baroque Keyboards


Abyan Gurase, Hannah Barlow Covey Law
Diane Malecki
Julia Carnahan
Katie Ambrose, General Manger, Oxford Bach Soloists
Jessica Lustig and 21C Media Group

About Coal + Ice

The exhibition is on view through August 11, 2024 at Asia Society 725 Park Ave.

COAL + ICE is an immersive photography and video exhibition, which brings to life the environmental and human costs of climate change, while also highlighting the innovative solutions that provide hope for a more sustainable future. At once intimate and universal, the powerful images capture the human face of climate change across the globe.

Comprising the work of more than 30 photographers from China and around the world, the exhibition traces a photographic arc from deep within coal mines to the melting glaciers of the greater Himalaya and across the globe, where rising sea levels and extreme weather events are wreaking havoc. The imagery in COAL + ICE is drawn from diverse materials, from glass-plate negatives to smartphone videos, spanning more than a century. Through intimate portraits and vast altered landscapes, these photographs document the consequences triggered by our continued reliance on fossil fuels, bringing awareness to the climate crisis while inspiring action on what can be done to avoid environmental catastrophe.

The exhibition takes things further to reflect innovative ideas for climate solutions that have germinated recently, with Maya Lin, Jake Barton (of Local Projects), and design firm Superflux contributing to imagining the actions we can take collectively.

COAL + ICE premiered in Beijing in 2011. Over the past 12 years, it has traveled to Shanghai and Yixian in China, and to Paris, San Francisco, and Washington, DC, using art to highlight the need for collaboration between the largest global carbon emitters—the US and China—in addressing the climate challenge. 

The exhibition is co-curated by Magnum photographer Susan Meiselas and exhibition designer Jeroen de Vries, and led by Orville Schell, Asia Society Vice President and Arthur Ross Director of the Center on U.S.-China Relations.

Photos projected during the performance come from COAL + ICE photographers: Daniel Beltrá, Noah Berger, Matt Black, David Breashears, Jimmy Chin, Cameron Davidson, Willem Diepraam, Anna Filipova, Geng Yunsheng, Lewis Hine, Dana Lixenberg, Gideon Mendel, Niu Guozheng, Darcy Padilla, Clifford Ross, Camille Seaman, Nichole Sobecki, Song Chao, Jamey Stillings, Peter van Agtmael, Yu Haibo

COAL + ICE is funded by the generous contributions of The Schmidt Family Foundation, Janet Ross, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Frank and Susan Brown, Adobe, Jerome Dodson, Stephanie Hui, Denise and Andrew Saul, Carlo Mormorunni and Magdalena Gross, and Anonymous Donors. Additional support is provided by Nancy Stephens and Rick Rosenthal, Laumont Editions, and Jane Shaw.

Park Avenue Armory Board of Directors and Staff

Michael Lonergan Senior Vice President and Chief Artistic Producer
Rachel Rosado Producer
Kanako Morita Associate Producer / Company Manager
Paul E. King Director of Production
Claire Marberg Deputy Director of Production
Nicholas Lazzaro, Lars Nelson Technical Directors
Rachel Baumann Assistant Production Manager
and members of the Board of Directors and Staff

Asia Society Staff

Orville Schell Vice President, Asia Society, and Arthur Ross Director, Center on U.S.-China Relations
Jeffrey Sequeira Associate Director, Center on U.S.-China Relations
Rachel Cooper Director, Culture and Diplomacy
Claudia Klinck Program Associate, Center on U.S.-China Relations
and members of the Asia Society team