Monday, May 5, 2008


DNCHRD is an event thrown by LVHRD, part of happycorp-global's family of branding companies. Their respective logos are concatenated below.Their site describes DNCHRD IV as "a dance competition in 6 colors. Six color-coordinated dance crews led by 6 Dance Captains show off their choreography during an interactive rock show."

I have been asked to participate as the red Winger team Dance Captain.

The dance war format is particularly fascinating to me. In the space of dance-culture-technology I crave both a proving ground and a place to create cultural war machines. The lesson here, be careful what you wish for and be clear what you are fighting for.

Some background on the organizing entity LVHRD.

LVHRD's New York chapter opened in October of 2004 to a seed group of 100 diverse individuals. Membership was officially closed in May of 2005. Currently, new members are evaluated on an individual basis involving participation, creative pursuits, and professional diversity. Through this criteria, LVHRD maintains an active and varied network of members.
LVHRD is something of a chimera, part art circle, part drinking club, part secret society and part branding machine. Dewar's is their most visible advertising partner. It supplies alcohol for all of their events and its branding can be seen throughout the LVHRD website, photography and video content.

Events include costumed members of the New York culturati drinking and partaking in competitive silliness like eating the contents of a vending machine or building urban models from cheese. They are fun and exclusive.
an ‘ideological,’ scientific, or artistic movement can be a potential war machine D&G (ATP 422)

For DNCHRD the silliness is the dancing itself. The colors are empty signifiers made to represent nothing of import. It is simply meant to distinguish camps.

I did a video shoot for this project on Sunday in the UNIQLO store. Of all of the other team leaders I seemed to be the only one with a real interest or capacity for dance. The comradery with the other captains was fun and dancing in retail space felt socially transgressive so I got a kick out of it. I got a bit confused when asked to dance with the clothing.I am not sure I know what I am getting into or how I feel about a the confluence of commerce and culture wars. To me red stands for radicalism and an anti-corporate ideology. Red stands for passion and sanguinity. When it comes to spirited beverages red stands for apple cider.

Going to war means fighting for something you believe in, not just doing it for fun. Perhaps I dont know what I am getting into. Perhaps LVHRD doesnt know what they are getting into either. We will see on May 20th. I am looking for a crew. Let me know if you are interested in battling in a dance war.

I am playing your game but I am playing my way. --Otis Houstin Jr aka Black Cherokee

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