Stats and Stories
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Ralph Escamillan

Program and component
Arts Across Canada, Circulation and Touring

Community
Surrey, British Columbia

 Field of practice

Dance

 Grant amount

$13,000

 Fiscal year

2019–20

Exploring Themes of Queerness, Anonymity, and Identity Through Dance

Two dark figures wearing gloves and straw masks.
HINKYPUNK by FakeKnot premiered at the PuSH International Performing Arts Festival, Vancouver, 2018. Photo: Richie Lubaton

Ralph Escamillan is a queer artist and drag performer trained in vogue/ballroom culture. His shows and workshops make strong connections with younger audiences.

Taking drag, ballroom, and vogue subcultures to the stage

Vogue/ballroom is a freestyle dance form that emerged from New York City’s underground drag culture. Escamillan has created a dance spectacular—known as HINKYPUNK—that explores the links between his street and contemporary dance practices. The show is inspired by popular media iconography of the body and based in his lived experiences as a queer artist. Costume is a focal point: audiences are fascinated as a sequin-skinned character creates their own identity while being bombarded by possible versions of itself—physically and using light, projections, and sound.

Connecting with younger audiences through dance workshops

HINKYPUNK premiered in 2018 at Club PuSH, in Vancouver, as part of the PuSH Festival. In fall 2019, Escamillan embarked on a tour of western Canada, bringing the show to Edmonton, Calgary, Regina and Terrace, BC. He taught workshops in most of these cities, connecting with communities and sharing his knowledge of vogue/ballroom culture and contemporary dance. His shows and workshops tend to connect strongly with younger audiences.

External
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Tagged As Stats and Stories Dance Arts Across Canada Circulation and Touring British Columbia