A Night of Magic with the American Dance Guild

I Will Show You An Ocean

On Friday December 2nd, I had to make a judgement call to bring in a replacement dancer to cover Derick McKoy, Jr, after learning of his sickness. It was a tough call to make, considering the concert was just three days away. Erring on the side of caution was the best measure; however, and so within a few short hours and after a few phone calls, I found a new dancer to cover Derick’s role. Thankfully, I was in the know of this new dancer and he was ready, willing and able to be a quick study.

And quick study he was! It was the day before the show, and DaJuan Foley jumped in with full gusto, and within two hours, learned the whole piece! Unbelievable! I was with Payton, the female dancer, and DaJuan the whole day, as after the rehearsal we quickly jumped in a cab and got to our tech rehearsal at the Aliey Center where we went into the early evening — whirlwind!! Our tech ran smoothly and the dancers felt pretty good, albeit exhausted. We planned on one more rehearsal the following day before the show. OMG!! No stress here!

With our last rehearsal Sunday the 4th during the day, we were able to whip up a fairly decent run through, though I barely got through giving notes before we were called to stage for ten whole minutes of last minute spacing. I sent the dancers home for a few short hours after that to gather their wits, and then we met up that evening for the concert. Needless to say, I was a tad nervous, mostly about getting the sewing done on the costumes last minute. Relief came when the dancers were dressed and I saw the costumes were going to function properly. I hugged them, and as I do before every show, I bestowed the piece to them — it’s now yours… go make magic on stage, I said!

And, magic they did make! From the moment they stepped onto to the stage, I was blown away by their beauty. Good things come in small packages, as both dancers stand just a wee bit over five feet tall! It was so fun looking at them eye-to-eye while working together! Magically, their statures appeared to look larger on stage — a comment I often got in my professional dancing years. The immense joy I felt as they took their final bow, made all the last minute changes worthwhile. I Will Show You An Ocean, had its second run on the Ailey Citigroup Stage — this time on the festival bill of the American Dance Guild, for which I was so honored. These two talented dancers are sure to be turning heads for years to come!

Feature Images by Robin Michals

Check out some more images from our duet here.

American Dance Guild 2022

Payton Primer and Derick McKoy, Jr. will grace the stage on December 4th, at the Ailey Citigroup Theater!

Tickets: https://tinyurl.com/ADGTix

Show time: 7:00pm

Ailey Citigroup Theater: 405 W 55th St, New York, NY 10019


27 years ago Adams Company Dance was on the first ever adjudicated bill of the American Dance Guild at the Cunningham Dance Studio. Now, ACD will again return to the festival with two talented new dancers, Payton Primer and Derick McKoy, Jr., performing “I Will Show You An Ocean,”  a passionate duet about the power of the human spirit. Both dancers have such impressive resumes, so be sure to check out their sites!

Dancer, Anna Levy, has been the acting rehearsal assistant and understudy to this duet. Her keen eye, and superlative skills in translation, have made the process of remounting this piece comfortable and efficient! Thank you to Anna!

See you there~

Full Circle

The year was 1995 and Adams Company Dance was now 4 years into its inception in NYC/CT. After being accepted to the first ever adjudicated festival of the American Dance Guild at the Cunningham Studio Theater, I went into rehearsals with my new dance partner, Eddie Taketa, to teach him Colors May Bleed — a piece I had already choreographed with my previous partner, Paul Dennis, and performed twice already by that point in time. American Dance Guild was built upon a grassroots premise with their primary mission being to preserve the legacy of dance with all the components that go along with it. Honoring pioneers and dance notables were top on their list. Hosting a dance festival seemed like a good idea.

Now 27 years later, Adams Company Dance comes full circle by being accepted to another festival at the Ailey Citigroup Theater this December. I am honored to be involved and excited to see how my duet from 2007, I Will Show You An Ocean, will look on two new dancers, Payton Primer and Derick McCoy, Jr. With new talent and a festival with colleagues lined up from my past, this ought to be a unique blend of artistry that will bring me back to my roots.

Review from 1995

Colors May Bleed

This athletic duet blends the tug-of-war between society’s pressure to conform  and a human’s right to freedom of choice. With original narration and a  hard-driving musical score, this agitating piece depicts tolerance over fear.


Chosen by Gus Solomons for the Juror’s Choice Award in the NewDance New Haven ’93 competition