Description: The Grand Step Project was conceived as a site-adaptive work to be performed on grand staircases, all over the world. The 30-minute work consists of Flight, a 15-minute dance performance for 50 dancers, preceded by a 15-minute performance by a 50-member choir or musical ensemble. Inspired by the dynamic tension between the beauty and grandeur of prominent grand staircases—and the casual use a diverse public makes of them on a daily basis—The Grand Step Project reflects the spirit of the contemporary urban environment. The work also functions as a way for local arts presenters to both reach new audiences and help connect different strands of their cultural community, specifically in dance and music.
In June 2004, Stephan Koplowitz and Dancing in the Streets drew widespread press, radio, and television coverage for the 24 free public performances of The Grand Step Project that were presented on six staircases throughout Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx for an estimated audience of 16,000 people. The work was performed in heavily trafficked public spaces where passersby paused in the midst of their daily life and remained riveted by the work—which for many was the first live dance performance they had seen. The project took place over eight days and was repeated three times per day at the following sites: the World Financial Center Winter Garden, Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian at the U.S. Customs House, The New York Public Library, The Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine in Manhattan; and the Bronx County Building and Brooklyn Borough Hall.