Co-MISSION Spring 2022 Works-in-Progress

Event Type
Event Description

Co-MISSION Works-in-Progress performances offer split bill showings by artists awarded Spring 2022 Fellowships by Links Hall's Programing committee.
The May 4th showing features Fellowship Artists: Nejla Yatkin and Jaerin Son


Nejla Yatkin - Described  by The New York Times as "a magician, telling tales and creating worlds" and "a fierce and supple performer," Chicago-based choreographer Nejla Yatkin travels the globe inspiring empathic connections between people and their environments. She creates solos, choreographs ensemble dances for stages and sites, collaborates on plays and film/video projects, and educates young artists. Nejla hails from Germany; her artistic lineage enfolds European dance-theatre, American Modern Dance, African-American modern dance, and numerous international influences. She is the recipient of awards from the Princess Grace Foundation, the National Performance Network, 3Arts and the Baryshnikov Arts Center, among others.

A Dance Without A Name by Nejla Yatkin is an interactive multi-media solo dance drawing on ancient symbols of the Ouroboros, nature and femininity. Through storytelling, song and dance, soloist Nejla Yatkin invites the audience into a participatory investigation of current paradoxes, of place, and the cyclical and entrapping nature of time. The theatrical dance piece is also about Yatkins own relationship to dance and language of embodying and moving in multiple cultures.

Jaerin Son is a director, puppet artist and set designer from Korea. Since moving to Chicago, she's been working with the Chicago Puppet Studio as a puppet maker and teaching artist. Her works include plays, experimental puppet theaters and installation arts. She believes a theater should be a space of overthrowing.

Jaerin had this to say about her piece: “When I look at the beautifully perfect bodies of robots or A.I, I see the distorted desire of humans. I sense the projected prejudices lie in their seeming perfection. In Dogs or Cats; Augmented Body, I’d like to show this distorted desire via the accentuated body shape of the A.I. puppet and have it juxtaposed with myself, an Asian immigrant female artist, on stage. Although A.I is designed to be flawless and human-like, they can never become a human. Yet, humans, especially the marginalized women of color like me, desire to be as strong, limitless, and immortal like A.I. Like a twin desiring each other’s bodies, Dogs or Cats; Augmented Body tells the story of bodies that carry hopes and despairs via visual storytelling.”

Puppeteer : Kevin Michael Wesson, Kelly Nesheim
Dramaturgy : Jihye Kim

Co-MISSION supports the research, development, and presentation of new work through residencies and fellowships for artists working in dance, theater, puppetry, and multi-disciplinary performance. Links provides artists with financial awards, 3-5 months of studio time, coaching, production support, opportunities to share works-in-progress, and presentation at the annual Festival of New Works. In addition, artists participate in the “Art of Rehearsal” mentorship program, led by esteemed coaches Kim Davis, Kristina Isabelle, and Bryan Saner.

Co-MISSION artists are selected by a jury panel composed of Co-MISSION alumni, Links staff and board, curators, artists, and other community leaders. The 2021-2023 jury members included: Mike Anestor (Co-MISSION alum artist, Links Hall Board Member), Aaliyah Christina (Co-MISSION alum artist, Links Hall Artist Programs Manager & Associate Curator), Elliot Reza Emadian (Co-MISSION alum artist), J’Sun Howard (Co-MISSION alum artist), Sam Lewis (Links Hall artist, Hyde Park Jazz Festival Co-Executive & Artistic Director), Stephanie Pacheco (Links Hall Executive Director), Mitsu Salmon (Co-MISSION alum artist) and Christy Uchida (former Links Hall Board Member, The Brinson Foundation President).
Special funding for Co-MISSION residencies in 2021-2022 is provided by J’Sun Howard and the Links Hall Commissioning Collective.

Running Time
1 hour, 15 minutes
Dance Styles


Links Hall

3111 N. Western Ave. at Constellation
Chicago, IL 60618
(773) 281-0824