iele paloumpis: In place of catastrophe, a clear night sky – Danspace Project
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iele paloumpis: In place of catastrophe, a clear night sky

A casual group photograph of the core cast of In place of catastrophe... This picture was taken in January 2020 just after our final in-process showing at Mark Morris Dance Studios and before any of us knew what COVID-19 was, let alone that it was already here. This was among the last times we gathered in-person as a cast. Pictured from left to right: Krishna Washburn, Marýa Wethers, iele paloumpis, Alejandra Ospina, M Rodriguez, Marielys Burgos-Meléndez, Ogemdi Ude, and Seta Morton. The cast wears all black and their facial expressions range from elated to sassy, and overall contentment. Various accessibility devices are being used, including Krishna's white cane, iele's eye patch, Alejandra's motorized wheelchair, and Marielys sits in a folding chair, while others stand or pose for the camera, with arms lovingly draped around each other's shoulders.
Left to right: Krishna Washburn, Marýa Wethers, iele paloumpis, Alejandra Ospina, M Rodriguez, Marielys Burgos-Meléndez, Ogemdi Ude, and Seta Morton. Photo: Adrien Lorenzo Weibgen.

Part of Platform 2022: The Dream of the Audience (Part II)

Thursday, May 26, 3pm*
Saturday, May 28, 3pm

*Proof of vaccination with 1st booster and mask required for entry.*

**Advance sales are currently at capacity. A wait list will be taken at the door 45 minutes prior to each start time. Payment for wait list tickets is $25 cash-only at the door.**

*The house will open at 2pm each afternoon for Blind and Visually Impaired audiences.

Accessibility: Audio Description (AD) will be provided for every performance by the performers. Additional AD tickets are available for blind or visually impaired audience members. Please email to reserve AD tickets. $15 Wheelchair accessible tickets are available for every performance through OvationTix.
Visit for more information.


What vitality allowed our ancestors to survive generations of trauma and what wisdoms have been passed down to us? What embodied magics are all our own? iele paloumpisIn place of catastrophe, a clear night sky — a work almost five years in the making — traverses these questions through voice and movement, exploring transgenerational resilience within a disability justice framework.

Incorporating vocalization, audio  description, scent, and tactile elements, iele paloumpis creates an immersive,  multi-sensory landscape that invites blind, visually impaired, and low vision audience members into the poetics of movement, de-centering sight as a primary mode of experiencing dance, prompting nuanced forms of perception. A multi-disciplinary cast of artists and collaborators, including Marielys Burgos-Meléndez, Seta Morton, Alejandra Ospina, iele paloumpis, M. Rodriguez, Ogemdi Ude, Krishna Washburn, and Marýa Wethers, moves through the work with varied relationships to disability, race, class, gender and sexuality, each embodying a unique history. 

To address the needs and safety of disabled and immunocompromised cast members and audiences who remain at the margins as New York “re-emerges” from the ongoing global pandemic, paloumpis will create a film version of the live experience – dates to be announced.

This performance runs approximately 2 hours with a 15-minute intermission.

Accessibility & Covid Safety at Danspace:
*Proof of vaccination with 1st booster and mask required for entry.*
Visit our Accessibility Info page & Covid Safety page for more information and guidelines for attending performances and events our venue.

Directed by iele paloumpis
Created and performed in collaboration with the Core Cast: Marielys Burgos-Meléndez, Seta Morton, Alejandra Ospina, M. Rodriguez, Ogemdi Ude, Krishna Washburn, and Marýa Wethers
Narrative Audio Description: Alejandra Ospina
Guest Singers: Rae De Vine, Joanna Groom, CJ Holm, Samita Sinha, and Adrien Lorenzo Weibgen
Set Design:
Textiles by iele paloumpis, Adrien Lorenzo Weibgen, and the Core Cast
Mycelium կարասներ (Armenian-style vases) by Nora Chavooshian
Costuming: iele paloumpis, with headpieces by lily gold
Dramaturgy: Seta Morton
Souli Song: Seta Morton, iele paloumpis, and Adrien Lorenzo Weibgen
Sound Design / Editor: Everett Saunders
Additional Sound Consulting: M. Rodriguez
Lighting Design: Kathy Kaufmann
Project Management: Seta Morton and Benedict Nguyen
Stage Manager / Production Assistant: Katherine De La Cruz
Production Assistant: Caroline Kittredge Faustine

iele paloumpis is a visually-impaired dance artist, herbalist, astrologer and end of life doula living in Canarsie/Munsee territory in Lenapehoking. iele’s work is rooted in kinesthetic awareness, trauma-informed griefwork, and ancestral re-membrance practices that reflect fragmented lineages across queer, trans and crip aural histories, alongside their Greek, Anatolian and Irish-American diasporic bloodlines. Most recently, iele has been exploring intergenerational trauma and resilience related to centuries of occupation, forced displacement, and eventually the 1923 population exchange between Greece and Turkey, known to Greeks as “The Catastrophe.” iele comes from a long line of mystics, and is grateful to have studied with many teachers who have influenced their path. Under the direction of Donna Faye Burchfield and Jeffery Bullock, iele received a BA in Dance from Hollins University in 2006. As an end of life doula, they have received certifications from Valley Hospice, Mount Sinai’s Palliative Care Institute, and Deanna Flores Cochran’s Accompanying the Dying program between 2014-16. iele has practiced Tarot since 1995, most recently with the mentorship of Eva Yaa Asantewaa. In summer 2014, iele studied herbology with Rosemary Gladstar, and more recently iele has deepened their connection to ancestral plant medicine across the Mediterranean & SWANA regions with guidance from Layla K. Feghali & SWANA Ancestral. Following in the footsteps of their Anatolian ancestors, iele is mostly a self-taught astrologer, though studying the teachings of Demetra George on Traditional Astrology has been particularly impactful. iele will always be a student of the more-than-human world, and is in endless gratitude to the forests, mountains, rivers, stars and animal-kin who offer so much wisdom. As a disabled, trans, queer survivor from a working class background, iele empathizes across multiple axes of oppression and brings this awareness to their work as an artist, educator, doula and intuitive healer.

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