Raw Fruit

A New Work by Kesha McKey and KM Dance Project

Raw Fruit by Kesha McKey and KM Dance Project is a collection of stories that reveals the essence of ancestral values which have been woven into the cultural fabric of our lives. This multidisciplinary dance work uses the technology of the kitchen to examine legacy, identity, socialization, unity, and friction inside the southern Black family dynamic.

Raw Fruit. Photo by Melisa Cardona

Photo by Melissa Cardona

Raw Fruit extra 4

Photo by Melisa Cardona

Raw Fruit extra 2

Photo by Melisa Cardona

Raw Fruit is a celebration of New Orleans culture juxtaposed to the complexities of the African American experience in the south. Using dance as the foundational medium to elevate the voices of African American women, this work is steeped in the movement, sound and spirit of Black folks in New Orleans and layered with visceral expressions of lineage, retention and ancestral memory. Raw Fruit investigates the impact of socialization on our family values and provokes thought on what is “moral”, “acceptable” “valuable” or “taboo” depending on who’s defining.

The aesthetic values in this work are rooted in traditional improvisational elements and the connections to our ancestors celebrating the cultural memory and legacy embedded in our rich family histories. From crawfish boils to second lines, living room altars to junior daughters, and bread pudding to pecan pralines, these experiences, rituals and ancestral contributions have created a web of lineage connecting our present experiences with customs rooted in the past. We recognize and value what we have acquired, what we release, what we hold and what we will share with those who come after us.

Sowing Seeds: A Workshop Series by KM Dance Project
Dates To Be Announced

"Sowing Seeds" is a multigenerational workshop series focused on celebrating the histories of African American women who have always been responsible for holding space for others, while rarely receiving the opportunity to be held themselves. KM Dance Project presents a genealogical love fest focusing on storytelling, creating family trees, honoring the selfless contributions of familial matriarchs, and creating movement that synthesizes discoveries made in the process. Dates and registration info coming soon.

Featured Artists
KM Dance Project Open modal
Kesha McKey Open modal
Catherine Caldwell Open modal
Chanice Holmes Open modal
free feral Open modal
Jasmin Simmons-Edmond Open modal
Millenique Brown Open modal
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Credits and Crew
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Support for Raw Fruit

Raw Fruit was made possible by the New England Foundation for the Arts' National Dance Project, with lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. General operating support was made possible by the New England Foundation for the Arts with funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. Raw Fruit was developed with support from the Urban Bush Women Choreographic Center Initiative, funded by the Ford Foundation.

New England Foundation for the Arts
Doris Duke Charitable Foundation
Urban Bush Women
NPN Creation Fund
Junebug Productions
Ashe Cultural Arts Center
Bronx Academy of Art and Dance
General Support

Programming and Exhibitions at the Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans are made possible through generous support from our generous supporters including: The Andrew Mellon Foundation; Art for Justice Fund, a sponsored project of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors; The Helis Foundation, the Sydney and Walda Besthoff Foundation; The Welch Foundation; The RosaMary Foundation; Greater New Orleans Foundation; National Performance Network; New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation; CAC President’s Council members: Valerie Besthoff, Susan & Ralph Brennan, Robyn Dunn Schwarz and Andrew Schwarz, Aimée & Michael Siegel, Staci Rosenberg, Jane B. & Rodney Steiner, MK Wegman & Lisa Mount, Dian & Tom Winingder; and CAC Silver Circle members: Virginia Besthoff & Nancy Aronson, Jessica Bride & Nick Mayor, Jane Cooper & Bob Heaps, Leslie & Jonathan Fawer, John Foley, Tina Freeman & Philip Woollam, Gina Monette, Marcy H. Monrose Curtis & Charles Curtis, Greg Montgomery, Barbara & Biff Motley, Michael Schneider, Sharon SIlvers, Jane & I. William Sizeler, and Gretchen & Scott R. Wheaton. We are also grateful for the generous in-kind support from The Domain Companies and Old No. 77 Hotel and Chandlery; as well as our community partners: Mr. Wolf; Loyola University; Dancing Grounds; Prospect New Orleans; Voice of the Experienced; and Women with a Vision.

Sydney and Walda Besthoff Foundation
RosaMary Foundation
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