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Since 2011, Caribbean-born choreographer Paloma McGregor has been developing Building A Better Fishtrap, an iterative performance project rooted in the vanishing fishing tradition of her father, Oscar.


The project examines what happens when you leave your ancestral home:

What do you take with you? Leave behind? Return to reclaim?


McGregor and her collaborators – from a grandfather in the Bronx to dancers in a studio on Governor’s Island – have spent the past decade exploring the body’s capacity to carry place, memory, and experience with it in ways that can transform objects, spaces, collaborators, and audiences. Each iteration of the work is created using the Fishtrap Method. Like McGregor’s father’s practice of building traps, these creative Fishtraps are crafted using core physical elements and embodied practices that are customized according to how she visions the work functioning in each space it inhabits.


“The doing in this work is its magic,” reflected Ni’Ja Whitson in Contact Quarterly.

“And McGregor does both the subtle and grand with such intention, the magic hypnotizes.”

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