Black Velvet: Architectures and Archetypes

Black Velvet 08-05-19 - 10

Mirelle Martins and Shamel Pitts in BLACK VELVET at BAM Fisher. Photo by Itai Zwecker.

A former company member of Batsheva Dance Company and the 2018 recipient of Princess Grace Award in Choreography Shamel Pitts returns home to Brooklyn with his recent work BLACK VELVET: Architectures and Archetypes. The piece, which played to sold-out houses in NYC and around the world in 2017, is the second installment of the Black Series and a follow-up to his autobiographical solo Black Box. Comprising vignette-like solos and duets immersed in intense music, evocative lighting and complemented by the spoken word, BLACK VELVET is a theatrical meditation on transcending the boundaries of gender, race, love, friendship, and identity.

BAM Fisher, May 9-12, 2019

Creation and Performance: Shamel Pitts and Mirelle Martins
Choreography: Shamel Pitts
Light and Video mapping: Lucca Del Carlo
Costume Designer: David Gap


Feature interview with Shamel Pitts on The Undefeated


“A haunting duet… Under Lucca Del Carlo’s stark, nimble lighting, facets of [Pitts and Martin’s]  relationship flash into view, struggle mingling with care and curiosity.” – Siobhan Burke, The New York Times

(*****) “A rich and complex work… Hopefully Shamel Pitts brings more of his work back to BAM soon.” – Carrie O’Dell, Reviews Hub

“A beautiful work of art as it is a dance performance. Black Velvet is both lush and sparse at the same time — visually, sonically and emotionally.” – Quinn Batson, OffOffOff


“Superb in so many ways… Mr. Pitts and Ms. Martins captivated the audience with all that they gave through their bodies from their souls.” – Isa Freeling,




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