BAAD!

The Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance was founded by Bessie Award-winning dancer/choreographer, Arthur Aviles and writer Charles Rice-Gonzalez. BAAD! is the home of Arthur Aviles Typical Theatre dance company and the space’s artists in residence include Actress/Comedian Drag King Elizabeth “Macha” Marrero, sculptor Cassandra, writer Rice-Gonzalez and choreographer Richard Rivera. BAAD! was named one of the Bronx’s seven cultural anchors.

BAAD! is located at 841 Barretto Street in the legendary American Banknote Building in Hunts Point. Built in 1911, the warehouse originally manufactured currency for foreign countries. It was sold in the 1970's to Walter Kahn Associates, which converted the building into an apparel center. The space occupied by BAAD! was a sewing shop but had been abandoned and neglected for about ten years before Aviles had the vision in 1998 to have a concert in the space. With help from The Point, members of his company, local residents, family and friends, the space was cleaned and prepared for just one weekend performance. The space was lit with scoop lamps, the chairs were borrowed from a local restaurant, a ballroom/disco floor was placed over the concrete floor and covered with marley borrowed from the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane dance company and the sound system was lent by a local DJ. The effort and energy from that performance inspired Aviles to work with the landlords to create a permanent space for dance and performance in the building. The landlord built the artist studios, and Aviles and Rice-Gonzalez began to create BAAD! by replacing 76 broken windows, purchasing chairs and raising money for a sprung wood floor. The floor, constructed by master carpenter Michael Glazebrook (a Point Board member) with advice from James Irvine of the Joyce Theatre, was funded through the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation and local "bake sales." The floor's crowning jewel was a professional marley floor that was purchased with funds from DTW's Outer/Space grant in 2001.

In addition to two concerts per year presented by AATT, BAAD! annually presents BAAD! ASS WOMEN, a cultural celebration of works by women; the Boogie Down Dance Series, a spring festival of dance in the Bronx; OUT LIKE THAT!, the Bronx's only fest celebrating works by Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender artists during the month of June; and the BlakTino Performance Series, presenting the works of Black, Latino and artists of mixed race, in the fall. The space also sponsors BAAD! Eyes, the visual arts component which curates visual art exhibitions to coincide with each of BAAD!'s festivals.

BAAD!, AATT and their presentations have contributed to moving the Hunts Point area of the Bronx to its next level as an arts and entertainment district.

http://www.bronxacademyofartsanddance.org/