Founded in January of 2001, ThickRoutes Performance Collage is a Chicago-based women’s performance collective committed to creating original multimedia works at the intersection of entertainment, social activism, and education. TRPC merges dance; spoken word/vocal exploration; original sound-scapes based on environmental sounds and ethnographic-based narratives; installations; and video to build innovative and socially relevant performance-based scholarship. We recognize the global need for creativity to continue decolonizing bodies and minds, to celebrate the importance of everyday stories and communities through art practice, and to challenge current hierarchies and hegemonies of power.
Our work shifts between personal narrative-stories and larger macro-societal forces, creating collage-like meditations that focus on the dialogue/dialectic between individual agency, collective space and the larger cultural, social, political and economic issues that frame our daily lives. Past works have dealt with issues of women creating safe “home” spaces (Home Stories, 2001); understanding the African diaspora’s significance to local African American women (Bag Ladies, 2002); intercultural negotiations of race and nation/citizenship issues between the disparate cultures/nations of Trinidad/Caribbean and Chicago/America (Race Travels, 2004); and a woman-centered performance interpretation of Chicago house music culture and history (Househedz, 2006).
TRPC has recently decided to revamp our mission and purpose to more actively tie our performance projects to community outreach and services. Stay tuned for updates in late 2009!