Black Light is a multi-year collaborative performance directed by Minnesota-based dancer-choreographer, Alanna Morris (formerly Morris-Van Tassel, City Pages' Artist of the Year, Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch" and 2021 McKnight Choreographer Fellow). This work explores birth, creation, death, and life transitions while honoring noble ancestry. It ventures into the nobility of black-ness; the divinity of feminine creative energy; and the harnessing of sensual expression. Black Light a re:Search performance is a natural world-inspired expression of interwoven local and global identities.

This event will be captioned, with other accessibility services available upon request.

Please note:  This work contains frontal nudity and may not be suitable for persons under the age of 16..

“After years of astounding performances with TU Dance, in which her emotional bravery matched her aesthetic integrity, Alanna Morris-Van Tassel ventured out on her own. And what a debut it was. In her solo, Yam, Potatoe an Fish! she delved into notions of home, displacement, race, and memory to create a personal cultural history that rang with universal truths. She found inspiration in her family’s migration from the Caribbean to Brooklyn, as well as her grandmother’s Yoruba-influenced Spiritual Baptist faith. Through her own body—athletic, articulate, and full of grace—she generated a movement vocabulary infused with muscular power and soul-soothing prayer.” —City Pages, Best Choreographer 2019

Yam, Potatoe an Fish! Former TU dancer Alanna Morris-Van Tassel stepped into the realm of dance-making with gusto, using her considerable gifts as a performer to fuel her choreographic voice.” —Star Tribune, Best of Dance 2018

“Wherever you find her, Morris-Van Tassel embodies the power of dance to create deep and lasting connections where words cannot.” —Dance Magazine, “25 to Watch”


Program Notes

Black Light is a multi-year collaborative performance directed by Minnesota-based dancer-choreographer, Alanna Morris.

This work explores birth, creation, death, and life transitions while honoring noble ancestry. It ventures into the nobility of black-ness; the divinity of feminine creative energy; and the harnessing of sensual expression. Black Light a re:Search performance is an expression of season and interwoven local and global identities.

A foreword to move forward

by Jamie J. Philbert Founder, Art On Purpose Pointer, Bois Academy of Trinidad and Tobago 

This work invites you into the light of blackness, a birthing place. A place where the light exits and black enters, where black exits and light enters. You are invited into this space as doulas of ‘Black Light.’ It is not meant to be the average idea of bringing an idea to being. It is meant to tickle the shape of archetype as we might know it or we might have known it. It is the place of knowing even when you think you don’t know. Knowing is feeling. Feeling is knowing. SO what do you feel when you hear, see, ‘Black Light?’ This is a research performance. A performance that translates research as search again. It questions the questions and answers the answers. It asks you to think with the performance and not about. It asks Alanna to look at the findings within her finding while in the act of finding. The research performance is not the end, it is a continuous beginning. ‘Black Light.’


Alanna Morris is the recipient of a 2021 McKnight Choreography Fellowship, administered by The Cowles Center and funded by the McKnight Foundation. This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund. This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

sponsors: The Cowles Center, The Great Norther, Northrop, AMVTP, Marbrook Foundation, metro regional arts council, Minnesota State Arts Board, McKnight Artist Fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts

Black Light a re:Search performance

Invocation to Ọya

This is an expression of my encounter with  Ọya. I am going through a journey and researching that process performatively. I am not an If  initiate and this choreography and staging reflects my personal homage to  Ọya, divine force of change and transformation in Yoruba cosmology. Warrior and defender of
women, she stands at the cemeteries of our life and has a close relationship to iku (death). We know her by the storms she creates, the destructive-creative life force. Iba  Ọya! Iba Yansan!

Choreographer: Alanna Morris with additional
choreography by Patriann Edwards
Music Credits: Songs performed by Ella Andall
Cast: Alanna Morris, Gabrielle Abram, Andréa Potter, Demetrius McClendon

Self Pleasure/Self Love


Choreographer and Solo Performer: Alanna Morris
Research Assistants: Imagine Joy and Vie Boheme
Music Credits: “Orange Moon” by Erykah Badu

Latent Psyche

Analytical psychology posits that there are aspects of our personalities that we can be unaware of, unidentify with, or even shun; and yet they are as real as the aspects with which we fancy ourselves. What source of the light is there being cast onto our shadows?

Choreographer: Alanna Morris and Collaborators
Music Credits: “Las Muchachas” by Susana Baca; “Songs She Never Heard” by Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah; “Moist” by Janet Jackson; and “Morning Bird” by Sade
Cast: Alanna Morris, Gabrielle Abram, Andréa Potter, and Demetrius McClendon

Mooji/Self Realization

During the pandemic I learned how to sit in Self. I discovered inner quiet and stillness through the Vedantic tradition. Moojibaba has been a way-opener.

Choreographer and Solo Performer: Alanna Morris
Movement Coach: Adam Barruch
Music Credits: Mooji


A few years ago I discovered the medicine of a good “whine” and surprisingly, there was no man present to assist. The music of my people is all I need to source the delightfulness of life! I hope you don’t look too hard at the stage here. I invite you to feel into the beauty that is you, that soca music holds for all of us.

Choreographer and Solo Performer: Alanna Morris
Research Assistant: Gabrielle Abram
Music Credits: “Workout” by Kes and Nailah Blackman


As we prepare for the next phase, after you take care of your personal needs, feel free to come back to your seat to ground and center. As you sit we invite you to tap into your inmost Self with the support of this frequency. Relax your body and relax your mind. Your quality of presence is supported and valued here!

Yanvalou and Madi

In my research, I keep encountering the Haitian Revolution. Jean-Jacques Dessalines (The Liberator) declared *Hayti/Ayiti as the Empire of Freedom. A place where all who rise up against the tyranny of European imperialism and colonialism would be bestowed upon them the identity as “honorary blacks.” Haiti/Ayiti is the first Black Republic and much praise is due her name. In Haitian Vodou, Yanvalou is a rhythm to welcome all the Spirits. It calls us to participate in the work of rebirth and healing. Mayi is a warrior dance of the Tainos, the indigenous peoples of Ayiti/Haiti. It was named after the corn harvested at the time — a substance that provided practical and spiritual power. Mayi is danced to prepare oneself to go to war. It brings healing and strength.
*French and indigenous names respectively for Haiti

Choreographer: Djenane Saint Juste
Concept and Staging: Alanna Morris, Florencia “Fofo” Pierre and Djenane Saint Juste
Music Credits and Cast: Yanvalou and Mayi by Florencia “Fofo” Pierre (manbo and singer), Djenane Saint Juste (choreographer, dancer and singer), Jacinthe Jean (houngan and singer), Beavois Anilus “Zangi” (lead drummer), Wilson Charles (drummer), and Alanna Morris (solo dancer)

Production Credits

Allana Olson (Stage Manager)
Dakota Blankenship (Stitcher)
Rebecca Karstad (Seamstress)
Valerie Oliveiro (Lighting Design)
Beaudau Banks (Lighting Design)
Trevor Bowen (Costumer)
Gabrielle Abram (Dancer-Collaborator)
Demetrius McClendon (ImagineJoy) (Dancer-Collaborator)
Andr a Potter (Dancer-Collaborator)
Djenane Saint Juste, Florencia “Fofo” Pierre, Jacinthe Jean, Wilson Charles, and Beavois Anilus “Zangi” (Afoutayi Haitian Dance, Music and Arts Co.)

Special Thanks

Vie Boheme; Canaan Mattson; AMVTP Administrative Assistant, Sea Thomas and Advisory Board Members, Lorna Morris, Christine Van Tassel, Stephanie Brown, and Michael Kleber-Diggs; Jamie Philbert; Yesenia Selier;  Ẹniọlá O. Adélékàn; Efuwape Andall; Baba Louis Alemayehu; Adam Barruch; Patriann Edwards; Second Shift Studio Space of Saint Paul; The Croft Residency; Jackie @ Center for the Performing Arts; Morgan Thorson @
MOVO Space; The Dance & Theater Department at Carleton College; Dana Kassel; Colin Edwards; and Alexandra Wells.

Alanna Morris

Alanna Morris (formerly Morris-Van Tassel), dancer-choreographer/educator/artist organizer, is a Brooklyn native and Saint Paul-based artist excavating cultural retention and fragmentation within their Caribbean diasporic identity. Alanna is a graduate of The Juilliard School and LaGuardia High School for Music & Art and Performing Arts (NY). Morris was a performer with TU Dance (MN) from 2007-2017, featured in works by Kyle Abraham, Gioconda Barbuto, Camille A. Brown, Ronald K. Brown, Greggory Dolbashian, Katrin Hall, Francesca Harper, Dwight Rhoden, and Uri Sands. In 2020, Alanna served as the TU Dance company’s Artistic Associate and is a founding Teaching Artist at The School at TU Dance Center. As a freelancer, Alanna is the Artistic Director of AMVTP, founded in 2017 to produce dance works that center the genius of the Afro-Caribbean archive, educational programs that bring wholistic learning and development to all communities, and community-building initiatives that give mid-career women Creatives resources to thrive Alanna has developed projects and collaborated with Idan Sharabi (Israel), Morgan Thorson (MN), Karen Sherman (MN), and Ashwini Ramaswamy (MN) and is currently touring Ramaswamy’s Let The Crows Come. In 2018, they were named Dance Magazine’s 25 to Watch! Alanna is a 2015 McKnight Dance Fellow, a Minneapolis’ City Pages’ Artist of the Year (2019), and Best Choreographer (2019). They have recently been awarded a 2021 McKnight Fellowship in Choreography. Alanna is the Artistic Director of AMVTP, founded in 2017 to produce dance works that center the genius of the Afro-Caribbean archive, educational programs that bring wholistic learning and development to all communities, and community-building initiatives that give mid-career women Creatives resources to thrive. Alanna’s choreography has been commissioned by Minnesota Dance Theatre, Penumbra Theatre, Children’s Theatre Co., the Dance Department at Carleton College, and The Cowles Center for Dance. This spring, Morris joined the dance faculty at Bard College as a Guest Teaching Artist through Gibney Dance (NY). Alanna is currently an Artistic Advisor to Springboard Danse Montreal.

Gabrielle Abram

Gabrielle Abram is a self-taught dancer and multilingual Hip Hop artist; a member of STRONGmovement, directed by Darrius Strong and of Atlantis13 Dance Collective, directed by Peace Madimutsa and Jonathan van Arneman. Abram continues to produce, dance and create work in the Twin Cities.

Demetrius McClendon

Demetrius McClendon (ImagineJoy) was born and raised in the south side of Chicago. They began dancing with street hip-hop at the age of 15 and have traveled nationally and internationally as a professional dancer, teacher, and choreographer sharing their passion for the arts.

Andréa Potter

Andréa Potter is a Capoeirista and dancer of traditions within the African diaspora, especially those in Cuba, Brazil and West Africa. She is a Nurturer of community, prioritizing Black people and their liberation through body and energy work to promote healing from systematic, generational and personal trauma.

Djenane Saint Juste and Florencia “Fofo” Pierre

Afoutayi Haitian Dance, Music and Arts Co. is a performance company and nonprofit arts organization incorporated in the state of Minnesota. Our mission is to promote Haitian heritage and diversify contemporary representations of Haiti through music, art, dance, and history education. Afoutayi was founded in 2009 and is directed by Djenane Saint Juste and Florencia “Fofo” Pierre.

The Great Northern celebrates our cold, creative winters through 10 days of diverse programming that invigorate mind and body. In an era of changing climate that threatens our signature season, we seek to create community, inspire action, and share the resilient spirit of the North with the world. For the full schedule of performances, art installations, outdoor activation, and solutions-focused climate talks, or to make a donation, please visit our website,

Your contribution will allow The Great Northern to continue seeking new perspectives on the elements that make this region unique while highlighting what we stand to lose if our climate continues to warm.

Thank you for supporting Northrop!

At Northrop, we believe in connecting great artists and ideas with our community and to a new generation of audiences. Your gift helps make memorable arts experiences possible by supporting extraordinary performances and new arts commissions, and helping ensure accessibility to everyone through live-streamed programming, outreach to diverse communities and subsidized student tickets. Our Friends are at the center of Northrop’s biggest ideas and brightest moments on stage.

Become a Friend of Northrop today! 
Donate online at

Ways to Give:

  • Annual Giving, a yearly gift amount of your choice.
  • Monthly Giving, choose a recurring gift amount that works for you.
  • Stock Gifts, Northrop accepts charitable gifts of stock.
  • Planned Giving, consider a legacy gift by including Northrop in your will or trust, or by designating Northrop as a beneficiary of a retirement plan or life insurance policy.
  • Matching Gifts, double your gift through your company’s matching gift program.

To learn more about supporting Northrop please contact:
Cynthia Betz or 612-626-7554 

A special thank you to our patrons whose generous support makes Northrop's transformative arts experiences possible. Make your mark on Northrop's future by becoming a Friend today, learn more by visiting

We gratefully acknowledge the support from, Arts Midwest Touring Fund, Minnesota State Arts Board, Marbrook Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, and New England Foundation for the Arts. 

We extend a special thank you to our event sponsors PNC Bank, RBC Wealth Management, and HGA.

director's circle


  • Curtis L Carlson Family Foundation
  • Robert Lunieski
  • Jennifer Marrone and David Short


  • Jerry Artz
  • Kurt and Susan Bjorklund, Dedicated to Silas and Victoria Ford
  • Ellie Crosby, The Longview and Crosswols Foundations
  • Richard Gregory
  • Gail and Stuart Hanson
  • Randy Hartten and Ron Lotz
  • Marbrook Foundation
  • Gary A. Reetz


  • Drs. Robert Bruininks and Susan Hagstrum
  • Susan DeNuccio
  • Nancy Gossell
  • Shawn Monaghan and Greg Plotnikoff
  • Thomas and Conchy Morgan, In Memory of Sylvia and Henry Frisch 
  • Sandra Morris
  • RBC Foundation-USA
  • RBC Wealth Management
  • Scarborough Fair Boutique
  • Donald Williams and Pamela Neuenfeldt

friend's circle


  • Anonymous
  • Frederick L. Betz
  • Mary Benson
  • Jeff Bieganek
  • Deb Cran and Bob Craven
  • Bruce and Judith Hadler
  • Karen Hanson and Dennis Senchuk
  • Minhchau and Lawrence Harms
  • Sally and Richard Leider
  • Glenn Lindsey
  • Bob and Susanna McMaster
  • Medtronic Foundation
  • Tim and Gayle Ober
  • Kathryn Sedo and Scott Beers


  • Margaret Albrecht
  • Jeanne Andre
  • Kathryn Cahill, In Honor of Ferne Rowland
  • R. and J. Cameron
  • Rob Carlson and Gregg Larson
  • John and Nancy Conlin
  • Will and Ginny Craig
  • Fran Davis
  • Stephen Davis and L Murray Thomas
  • Meghan DeBruycker Legacy Fund-Willmar Area Community Foundation
  • Bob and Nancy Erickson
  • Jo-Ida Hansen
  • Brian Lammers and Emily Knox
  • Barbara and Jeffrey Land
  • David and Leni Moore Family Foundation
  • Mark and Cecilia Morrow
  • Gwen and Mason Myers
  • Rebekah Nagler
  • Lance Olson
  • Derrill Pankow
  • Dale Schatzlein and Emily Maltz Fund of The Minneapolis Foundation
  • Richard Taylor
  • TCF Foundation
  • John Wald and Marianne Remedios
  • Mark and Carol Weitz


  • Anonymous
  • Elissa Adams and Michael Margulies
  • Janice Apple
  • Kate and Lynn Christianson
  • George Ehrenberg
  • Pat Gaarder
  • Denise and Corey Holtz
  • Barry and Karen Johnson
  • Jan and Lance Johnson
  • Jennifer and Mark Johnson
  • Candy Lord
  • Holly MacDonald
  • David Musolf
  • Elizabeth Parker
  • Ann Piotrowski
  • Patricia and Joseph Pulice
  • Judith Rohde
  • Gordon Rouse and Sylvia Beach
  • Catharine Ruther and David Vanney
  • Phyllis Saltzman
  • Kathleen Schou
  • Dr. Darlene Sholtis and Dr. Heino Beckmann
  • John and Kelly Wheaton
  • Mark Wright and Elizabeth Walton

friend's circle


  • Anonymous
  • Paul Aslanian
  • Thomas and Jill Barland
  • Sharon Bigot
  • Jeanne Blaskowski
  • David Braslau
  • Kristen Brogdon
  • Mark and Karena Casey
  • JaNan Cavanaugh
  • Russell Cowles
  • Virginia Dale
  • Sandra Dale
  • Timothy and Judith Dove
  • William Durfee and Devorah Goldstein
  • Marcia and Berkan Endres
  • Kathy Gremillion
  • Richard Gwynne
  • David and Julie Hartung
  • Joyce and Eugene Haselmann
  • Annemarie Herrlich
  • Patricia Herrmann
  • Christina Herzog
  • Gayle Hjellming
  • Richard Hruby and Kimberly Broderick
  • Kimberly Hutchens
  • Janet Johnson
  • Tovio Kallas and Beatrice Holton
  • Micki and Neil Kay
  • Warren and Patricia Kelly
  • Randy Kish
  • Christina Kraft and Nelson Capes
  • Alan and Peggy Lathrop
  • James and Sharon Lewis
  • Barbara Lind and Craig Poeschl
  • Kimberley MacLennan
  • Holly Manning
  • Candice and Gerald Matykowski
  • Kenneth and Judith Matysik
  • George and Orla McClure
  • Margaret Moutvic-Wasz
  • Michael and Lisa Nekich
  • Jenine Nordquist
  • Jennifer and William Neujahr
  • Donald Ofstedal
  • Field and Cynthia Olson
  • David Pace
  • David and Mary Parker
  • Jacob Rabinowitz
  • Holly Radis-McCluskey and Glen McCluskey
  • John Reay and Karen Hanson
  • Bridget and David Reddan
  • Debra Reischl
  • Julia Sand
  • Kari Schloner
  • Dan Sheehan
  • John Shreves
  • Jan and Alan Sickbert
  • Jon Thomas
  • Cindy Tong and Robert Denison
  • Ertugrul and Karen Owens Tuzcu
  • John Van Bogar
  • Cheryl Wall
  • Michael Weinbeck
  • Cathy Westrum and Annelynn Westrum
  • Monica Winker-Bergstrom
  • Millie Woodbury
  • Roger Worm

Up to $99

  • Atashi Acharya
  • Kent Akervik
  • Gerald and Georgianna Allan
  • Arthur and Charlet Allen
  • Jean Anderson
  • Marcia Anderson
  • Michael and Jessica Austin
  • Kevin and Shirley Arms
  • Peter Bartholome
  • Todd Barton
  • Austin Beatty
  • Michael Blomberg
  • Tierra Boose
  • Jason Borah
  • Mary Boyer
  • Patti Brase
  • Kathryn Bredemus
  • Philip Briggs
  • Clifford Brody
  • Nancy Brown
  • Justin Burke
  • Thomas Cabaniss
  • Patricia Cagle
  • Mary Campbell
  • Philippe Catalan
  • Fay Chang
  • Karen Charles
  • Mary Ann and Stephen Chicoine
  • David and Nancy Claussen
  • Deborah Clendenning
  • Beverly Connolly
  • Jeanne and David Cornish
  • Scott Cragle
  • Charlotte Curry
  • Neal Cuthbert and Louise Robinson
  • Cynthia Daggett
  • Emily Dail
  • Andre Delattre
  • Soleil Des Lauriers
  • Cindy Devoy
  • Vicki Donatell
  • Byron Douglass
  • Robert Dufault and Ann Wilcox
  • Nancy Duffy
  • Lee Dunn
  • Jill and Ralph Dupslaff
  • Jean Durades
  • Alisa Eland
  • Kristin Elizondo
  • Susan Elsner
  • Barbara and Gerald Erickson
  • Tamara Eristavi
  • Valerie Fazedin
  • Elizabeth Fleck
  • Debra and Phillip Ford
  • Judith Franklin
  • Kirk Froggart
  • Candance Gossen
  • Michael Green and Jane Powers
  • Jane Greenberg
  • Amanda Grimm and Steven Pope
  • Julie Hagemann
  • Nils and Heather Halker
  • Urbae Hall
  • Amy Handelsman
  • Jim Hartmann and Michelle Miles
  • Jean Haskell
  • Richard Haskin
  • Cari Hatcher
  • Deborah Hennrikus
  • Patrick and Kimberley Higgins
  • John Hofstede
  • Janet Horvath
  • Ramona Jacobs and Charles Christianson
  • Karin Jacobson and Adam Chapweske
  • Ann Jaede
  • Jay Jaffee and Wendy Friede
  • Bill Jones
  • Michael Kanner
  • Anna Kerben
  • Cassandra Kiehn
  • Milo Kim
  • Nancy Klausner
  • Amy Kosari
  • Connie Kuhn
  • Arnold Kvam
  • Roberta Lamps
  • Carol Larson
  • Linda Leamer
  • Kathryn LeFevere
  • Jane Leonard and Lori Lippert
  • Elizabeth Ler
  • Debra Lex
  • Michelle and Kevin Lian-Anderson
  • Kathryn Lien
  • Kristine Loh
  • Ann Loushine-Thomsen
  • Marcelienne and Roger Lundquist
  • Dianne and Don MacLennan

Up to $99 (continued)

  • Kyle Maltz
  • Kathryn Manger
  • Judy Marcouiller
  • Nancy Marcy
  • Cynthia Marsh and C.W. Vandersluis
  • Susan McNamara
  • Margaret Michaelson
  • Sanjay Mishra
  • Jill Mitchell
  • M Valeriana Moeller
  • Eric Molho
  • Karen Moon
  • Daniel Moore
  • James Moore
  • Ayaka Moriyama
  • Summer Morrison
  • Ann Mosey
  • Chuck Munro
  • Bridget Murphy
  • Amy Nelson Sander
  • Lloyd Nestrud
  • Shelley and James Nichols
  • Libby Nickel
  • Linda and Larry Nielsen
  • Nina Norum
  • James and Sarah Novotny
  • Kristine Olson
  • Sandra Olson
  • Lynn O’Neal
  • Barbara Owens
  • Nicolas Paredes Sepulveda
  • Ann and Bill Parker
  • Judith Parr
  • Helen Paul
  • Mike Payer
  • Matthew Peak
  • Marjorie Pearson
  • Christina Peterson
  • Edward Peterson
  • Greg and Rebecca Phelan
  • Charisse Pickron
  • Holly Pike and Joseph Klein
  • Cathy Poff
  • Claudia Poser and Ronald Ofstead
  • James Potter
  • Nancy Price
  • Rebecca Quaid
  • Mark Rekow and Lynn Mader
  • Melanie Richards
  • Mary Roberts and Edward Kraft
  • Piper Ritter
  • Susan Roberts
  • Robyne Robinson
  • Yvonne Rode
  • Susan Rohde
  • Susan Rose
  • Irina Rukina
  • Makie Sanchez
  • Edward Sarnoski
  • Rebecca Scherpelz
  • Robin Schow
  • Cynthia Sharon
  • Elizabeth Sharpe 
  • Michele and Chris Shepherd
  • Rebecca and John Shockley
  • Kevin Silverstein and Karen Tang
  • Carol Skinner
  • Emily Soltis
  • Patricia Stankovich
  • Kathleen Stanley
  • Nanette Stearns
  • Kate Stolpman
  • Vicki Strahan
  • George Swan
  • Toni Taylor
  • Marie-Luise and Anita Teigen
  • Ivette Tejeda
  • Connor Theisen
  • Kay Troan
  • Nancy Tykwinski
  • Brandon Ure
  • Alla Valdberg
  • Tatiana Valdberg
  • Ann Van de Winckel
  • Frank Van Tongeren
  • Bill Venne and Douglas Kline
  • Carolyn Wahl
  • Brian and Katherine Weitz
  • Andrew Welken
  • Helen and Paul Wells
  • Curtis West
  • Susan Wiste
  • Allie Wolf
  • Rachel Wolff
  • Winifred Wu and Robert Lund
  • Yuhsuan Yeh
  • Mary Zilge
  • Margaret Zoerhoff
  • Roberta Zohara

This season’s listing is current as of 1/21/22
Please contact Trisha Taylor at  if you have any corrections or questions.

The Heritage Society honors and celebrates donors who have made estate and other planned gifts for Northrop at the University of Minnesota. 

  • Nancy M Allen*
  • Jerry L Artz
  • John W Follows*
  • Stephen Gordon and Pat Gavan-Gordon
  • Peter S Lund
  • Darlene M Sholtis



Thank you to the generous donors who continue to support programming for Northrop’s beloved Aeolian-Skinner Organ. It is because of you that this magnificent instrument’s voice will be enjoyed by many for years to come.

organ supporters


  • Anonymous
  • Reade Adams
  • Katherine Anderson
  • Terry and Vicki Anderson
  • Pat Andrle
  • J. Michael Barone
  • Karen and Alan Beck
  • Mark Bergaas and Mark Ceilley
  • Carol Bessler
  • Fred and Cynthia Betz, In Honor of Esther Stocke
  • Dean Billmeyer
  • Joyce Brown
  • Drs. Robert Bruininks and Susan Hagstrum
  • Francis Carter
  • James Commander
  • Scott Cragle
  • William and Virginia Craig
  • Dee Ann and Kent Crossley
  • Thomas Dillon
  • Sheena Dufresne
  • Laura and Tim Edman
  • David Fiebiger
  • Peter Fiore
  • Catherine Fischer
  • Deborah Ford
  • Susan Foster
  • Salvatore Franco


  • Judith Franklin
  • Reid Froiland
  • Maiken Givot
  • Karen Grasmon
  • Marilyn Haight
  • Nils and Heather Halker
  • Thomas Hanna
  • Jeffrey Helgerson
  • Helen Hillstrom
  • Janet Hively
  • Anna Iltis
  • Charlie Johnson
  • Susan Keljik
  • Mark Kieffer
  • Joseph Kuznik
  • Arnold Kvam
  • Carol Leach
  • Kristin Lefferts
  • James Lehmann
  • Kathryn Lien
  • Ronald Low
  • Peter Lund
  • Stephanie McDonald
  • Alfred and Ann Moore
  • Daniel Moore
  • Darcia Narvaez
  • Paul Nasvik
  • Pamela Neuenfeldt and Don Williams


  • Don Notvik
  • Steve Oakley
  • Paul Olsen
  • Steve Panizza
  • Robert Paschke
  • Daniel Peterson
  • David and Margaret Peterson
  • Chia-Hsing Pi
  • Holly Radis-McCluskey and Glen McCluskey
  • Jane Rosemarin and Val Lardwehr
  • Bruce Schelske
  • Connie Schuelka
  • Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation
  • John Sebolt
  • Nancy Shallcross
  • Rebecca and John Shockley
  • Foster Solem
  • Chris Solheid
  • Laurine Speltz and Denis Ryono
  • Richard Steege
  • Paul Stever
  • William Tajibnapis
  • Nicole Thomas
  • Curtis Trout
  • John Vilandre
  • Michael Volna
  • Nancy Wellington
  • David and Rachelle Willey

organ advisory board

  • J. Michael Barone
  • Cynthia Betz
  • Dean Billmeyer
  • Kristen Brogdon
  • Dr. Robert Bruininks
  • Dee Ann Crossley
  • Laura Edman
  • Cathie Fischer
  • Nils Halker
  • Cari Hatcher
  • David Jensen
  • Helen Jensen
  • Pamela Neuenfeldt
  • Kari Schloner

This season’s listing is current as of 1/21/22
Please contact Trisha Taylor at  if you have any corrections or questions.

The Northrop Advisory Board

The Northrop Advisory Board is committed to the growth and awareness of Northrop’s mission, vision, and the continued future of presenting world-class dance and music in our community. If you would like more information about the advisory board and its work, please contact Cynthia Betz, Director of Development, at 612-626-7554 or

board members

  • Cynthia Betz
  • Jeff Bieganek, Chair
  • Kristen Brogdon
  • Dr. Robert Bruininks
  • John Conlin
  • Deb Cran
  • Susan DeNuccio
  • Karen Hanson
  • Cari Hatcher
  • Jill Hauwiller
  • Bob McMaster
  • Katheryn Menaged
  • Cory Padesky
  • Holly Radis-McCluskey
  • Gary Reetz
  • Robyne Robinson
  • Kari Schloner
  • Donald Williams

This season’s listing is current as of 1/21/22
Please contact Trisha Taylor at  if you have any corrections or questions.




Learn More

The content below derives from the Northrop Across Campus Program that supports Northrop's mission towards intersections between performing arts and education for the benefit of all participants now and for generations to come.

Northrop Across Campus participants are invited to a special Campus and Community Partner night of Black Light a re:Search performance, Thu, Feb 3. Please contact for more information.

Explore These Themes

Find ways to make thematic connections to these suggested courses.

Dance: Modern, Contemporary, Multi-Genre

Theatrical Storytelling

Spirituality and Healing

Cultural Studies/Global Studies/Diaspora Studies

Mortuary Science/Death Rituals

Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies

African American Studies

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Social Justice/Civil Rights

American Studies/American Cultural Studies/American History


Music: Multi-Genre

Take a deeper dive into these resources that provide more information about the company of performers, the history of the artform, and where you can learn more about the artistic process!


The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment by Elkhart Tolle (Book)

Emergent Strategy: Shaping Change, Changing Worlds by Adrienne Maree Brown (Book)  Find it at the U of M Library  or

Uses of the Erotic by Audre Lorde


ENGAGE: Above and Beyond

This research performance guide is a way to further engage with audience members looking to fuel a deeper and artistically enriching viewing experience. Please read the quotes, questions, tasks, and resources below in order to prepare yourself for an interactive artistic experience during the performance, an engaging post-show conversation, and ongoing individual exploration beyond this showcase of work.

The Hero’s Journey and the Essence Self 

“At any point you can make a profound change in your body by just using your mind.” -Jane Kosminsky, Teacher of Alexander Technique

“We create our own reality.” - Seth

  • How much creativity do you find in the continual authoring of your life?  When faced with a challenge how much flexibility or grace do you give to your understanding of your life situation as a themed story, much like a play, in which *you have engaged the characters and events for a certain outcome?  
  • Dream quest! Get still and quietly go on a visionary adventure. Make it your intention to connect with an aspect of yourself that is calling for your attention. Ask her/him/them questions. Time is a continuum. Write your answers down. It may help to have a candle, a photo, a stone, any implement nearby to support your journey. or nothing at all!

*There are many names for this aspect of Self. Some call it God, the god-self, one’s greater subjectivity. 

Goddess Worship & The Veneration of the Divine Feminine 

Chaos is just higher order.” - Eniola Orisagbemi Adelekan

  • What cosmological view did you grow up with/were socialized into? 
    • In that cosmological view is there space for a Creator that is trans-gendered or non-gendered? To quote Trinidadian artist-scholar, Jamie Philbert, how is the divine feminine energy/principle seen as both vessel and source? 
  • Dream quest! Go on a search. 
    • What examples can you find, cosmologically, in which masculine and feminine principles are treated as equals, both in form and in a creative role?

*Cosmology is defined as the study of the order of the universe/world (Metu Neter Vol. 1). “First, it provides an ordered and unified (synthetical) view of who and what is God, Man, and the forces that administrate and sustain the world. Second, cosmology (like all blueprints and maps) provides a framework that guides thinking and action through the vast array of seemingly unrelated life situations to the successful identification and attainment of the goal of living.” —Ra Un Amen Nefer, Metu Neter Vol. 1

Oracles from the Natural World: “As so within, so without” The Principle of Correspondence, a Hermetic law of ancient Kemet

  • The project takes inspiration from and is in conversation with the natural world—a connection with the earth and her seasons. Consider that many traditional and Indigenous societies around the world, past, present, and future, practice living in the right relationship with nature (as opposed to the exploitative and extractive resourcing from the earth that has come to be synonymous with capitalism since the rise of the Industrial Revolution). What communities are you plugged into that see life and human progress as participatory and holistic?
  • Dream quest! Spend some time in nature. Give an offering and ask to receive a lesson.  Write your experience down and lean into the exploring of how that principle learned could express itself in other ways in your life, thoughts, or even your day! Cultivate an awareness of gleaning lessons from what you see around you every day.

Self Pleasure

“We have been raised to fear the yes within ourselves, our deepest cravings. But, once recognized, those which do not enhance Our future lose their power and can be altered. The fear of our desires keeps them suspect and indiscriminately powerful, for to suppress any truth is to give it strength beyond endurance. The fear that we cannot grow beyond whatever distortions we may find within ourselves keeps us docile and loyal and obedient, ex-ternally defined, and leads us to accept many facets of our op-pression as women. [...] This is one reason why the erotic is so feared, and so often relegated to the bedroom alone, when it is recognized at all. For once we begin to deeply feel all the aspects of our lives, we begin to demand from ourselves and from our life-pursuits that they feel in accordance with that joy which we know ourselves to be capable of.” - Audre Lorde, writer, Uses of the Erotic 

“The white fathers told us: I think, therefore I am. The black goddess within each of us—the poet—whispers in our dreams: I feel, therefore I can be free.” - Audre Lorde

  • Ancestor Audre Lorde explains in Uses of the Erotic that the erotic differs from the pornographic and brings empowerment to our lives as women and those otherwise identified. 
  • Dream quest! Food for thought. What have you been taught regarding self-pleasure and how empowering have those messages been?

The Shadow Self and the Latent Psyche

“What you resist persists” - The Law of Attraction

  • In analytical psychology (Jung) the shadow self is typically a reference to the unconscious aspect of the personality—unknown, unidentified with, and sometimes shunned.
  • Dream quest! Consider that for anything to cast a shadow there must first be a source of light. Talk with someone you trust about your shadow self. The light is nearby.

Cycles of Death, Life, and Rebirth 

How do we recognize what is sacred in our lives and become centered in that?”

“Death is the twin of Life.”  - Louis Alemayehu, poet, Akhenaten’s Dream

  • The project is developing before and during the age of COVID-19, at a time of great social transition and loss. Further dramatized in presentation at the Great Northern Festival and midwinter season. Grief has been a unifying factor in all our lives during the COVID-19 pandemic and social movements for change both locally and around the world. 
    • What do we know (experientially) about Winter? How do we sustain life during the Winter months? What dies and what is reborn? What form of life persists? What is the function of the energy of Creation during the winter season? 
  • Dream quest! Meditate on the questions above. Then recall your ritual practices to honor the destructive-creative principle in Life. 


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