Strange Humors

About Strange Humors


Equal parts comedic and combative, Artistic Director Robert Battle’s Strange Humors is an eccentric, jocular display for two dancers.  Composer John Mackey, with whom Battle is a frequent collaborator, provides a fiery score propelled by elements of African hand drumming and Middle Eastern folk music.

Stationed far apart along a narrow shaft of light, the duo mirrors the building tension between Mackey’s string quartet and djembe with quirky spasms. They ultimately meet for an explosive confrontation of wits and prowess, as though “possessed by the force of feelings beyond their control” (The New York Times).

Support for this Company premiere was provided by The Ellen Jewett and Richard L. Kauffman New Works Endowment Fund and Daria L. Foster.

Performance Schedule & Tickets

There are no upcoming performances for this repertory piece.



Robert Battle


“Strange Humors” original score by John Mackey.


Original design: Missoni; Reconstructed by Jon Taylor


Burke Wilmore

First Performance

1998; Ailey Premiere 2012

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