purpose;communiqué      an artistic mission in process/construction 

Johnnie Cruise Mercer/TheREDprojectNYC : a community of artistic dare-devils that believe in the thorough reevaluation of the human super ego... psycho-analysis...self's relation to colonization...confronting conflict, engaging conversation, and sparking the processes of reconstructing/reworking**... deeply invested in facilitating live performance experiences that challenge reality, and embrace the concept of perspicacious seeing...cannot be contained by the stage nor the label "performing art", bridging dance into voice, into actuality. and into subconscious experiential realization...astral projections of inner turmoils, bouts of responses from outward calls, settles into ritualistic happenings that destroy the context of contemporary performance. As artists, as deconstructionists, we are (both on stage and off) interrogators of the contemporary, and instigators towards post-contemporary existences.



(a native of Richmond, Virginia, a BFA graduate from Virginia Commonwealth University’s Department of Dance and Choreography) is a maker, freelance-performer,  educator, and artistic entrepreneur based in New York City. As the Choreographic/Company Director of Johnnie Cruise Mercer/TheREDprojectNYC, his work has been presented/commissioned/shared at The Center for Performance Research-CPR, Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance (BAAD!), The Dance Place of DC, Gibney: Agnes Varis Performing Arts Center, Judson Church Movement Research, Greenspace, The Bolls Theater of Detroit, The Jamaica Performing Arts Center, 92Y Harkness Dance Center, The Billie Holiday Theater (RestorationARTS), York College’s The Milton G. Bassin Performing Arts Center, NYU Tisch School of Dance, Brooklyn Arts Exchange (BAX), NYU Skirball's AUNTS, the NADA Conference, as well as recently at the 2018 Fusebox Festival where he received the 2018 Austin Critics Table Award for Best Toured Performance 2018. As an artistic leader/educator, Mr. Mercer facilitates and teaches within the New York Public School system through The Leadership Program- a mentorship based organization that uses art to foster/engage conversations on self and managing success. Mercer has also been on teaching faculty/a guest artist at The American Dance Festival, Bates Dance Festival, NYU Tisch Summer Dance Program, Gibney, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Desales University, Muhlenburg College, and the University of Texas at Austin (in residence as their 2016 Vangaurd Choreographer). Johnnie is currently a 2018 Choreoquest AIR at RestorationARTS, and an inaugural recipient of 2018 Partnership Residency at the Stephen Petronio Residency Center (in collaboration with Danspace and DanceForceNYC). 



Photo by Torian Ugworji

Photo by Torian Ugworji

Choreographic Artist/Assistant Director. 


is a native of Virginia, is a dance artist, teacher and art administrator. She received her BFA in Dance & Choreography and minor in General Business from Virginia Commonwealth University. Shanice is currently a company member with UNUM Dance Collective led by Tarik O’Meally and dance theatre X led by Charles O. Anderson. Currently, Shanice holds the administration position of Account Manager with nationally know enrichment company, Tippi Toes®, providing dance to students across the DMV area. Shanice is thrilled to continue as a company member with Johnnie Cruise Mercer/TheREDproject NYC for the season

Photo by Torian Ugworji

Photo by Torian Ugworji

Choreographic Artist/Marketing Lead. 


Washington D.C. native, and Brooklyn-based freelance artist started his training at Towson University in 2010. He also studied on scholarship at the American Dance Festival 2010 /2012 and the 2011 International Association of Blacks in Dance Conference. Thomas has performed with Dance Exchange, Christopher K. Morgan & Artists, VTDance, S.J Ewing & Dancers, Algernon Campbell Experience, and Dissonance Dance Theatre.Thomas was one of 11 artists chosen for the 2017 International Dance Omi Artist Residency and also joined Dance Exchange for their residency with Great Smoky Mountain National State Park for the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse.  Thomas works with Gibney Dance as a Community Actionist facilitating movement workshops in schools through the city and leading creative movement for children in Domestic Violence shelters. Thomas has presented work in New York at Center For Performance Research & Alchemical Theatre (2018), Velocity Dance Festival (2016), Georgetown University and Towson University (2016), Dance & Desert Showcase at ADI (2015), and has had his work adjudicated at the ACDA’s Mid-Atlantic Region in March 2012 and 2013. Thomas graduated with a BFA in Dance Performance and  BA in Mass Communications/Journalism from Towson University. 

Photo by Torian Ugworji

Photo by Torian Ugworji

Choreographic Artist/Community Engagement Coordinator.


Adrianne Ansley holds a BFA in dance from The Florida State University. She recently moved from her hometown of Sarasota, Florida - where she taught creative movement at Sarasota Ballet’s after-school program Dance the Next Generation -  in order to further her aspirations as a professional choreographer. Since becoming a resident of New York, she has been given the opportunity to work on projects alongside Stefanie Nelson and Douglass Gillespie. Adrianne is currently establishing herself as a dancer in the New York City area and continues to focus on creative efforts within the field




Company Apprentice/Intern 2018-2019 


Mikaila Ware (native of Atlanta, Georgia) is a graduate of Florida State University where she obtained her B.F.A in Dance. She has studied and performed works by master teachers and choreographers such as Alex Ketley, Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, Gerri Houlihan, Ilana Goldman, Darrell Jones, Pearl Ubungen, just to name a few. Upon moving to New York, Mikaila has worked in the mediums of dance and film with choreographers and producers such as Gwen Welliver, André Zachery/Renegade Performance Group, Bouchra Ouizguen, and Monticello Park Productions. Along with being a performance artist, Mikaila has presented choreography at Dixon Place where she began to cultivate her practice of physically integrated dance (dance generated by and with disabled artists). Mikaila further explored the intersection of accessibility work administratively and creatively through the completion of an Accessibility Partnerships and Programs Fellowship at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. Additionally, Mikaila is an alumna of the Diversity in Arts Leadership program with the Arts and Business Council of New York. She is currently a company member with Davalois Fearon Dance and an administrator at Brooklyn Arts Exchange." 


Creative&Visual Director. 


Richmond, VA. Virginia Commonwealth University (BFA in Kinetic Imaging). Torian Ugworji works as a creative director with the choreographer Johnny Mercer. Torian creates video projections to compliment the dance work and utilizes the art of filmmaking to create a series of dance films alongside each season. Through dialogues and discussions, Torian builds a collection of work that expands through the dance medium and into the realm of community activism through the arts. He believes through physical expression and collaborative efforts, art can speak change. 

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Music Director

Collaborator for Process memoir 4: The word, the spirit, and Little Rock. 


Monstah Black is a recording/performing artist. He performs  internationally with his husband Manchildblack as the electronic duo The Illustrious Blacks (theillustriousblacks.com). His creations incorporate original music/sound design, choreography, costuming and video. 

Monstah Black has been a curator for Movement Research Spring Festival and is a curator for Mt. Tremper Arts, Watershed Program in The Catskills.

Monstah has received numerous awards including The Tom Murrin Performance Award, Dixon Place Commission, Franklin Furnace Fund, Queer Arts Mentorship Fellowship, BRIC Media Arts Fellowship, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, American Music Center Live Music for Dance Program, The District of Columbia Commission on The Arts and Humanities, Career Transitions for Dancers, Topaz Arts Center, NYSCA and has garnered extensive support from New York Organizations including The Thelma Hill Performing Arts Center, The Field, Dance New Amsterdam and New York Live Arts. He is a graduate of the Long Island University New Media Art and Performance, Master of Fine Arts Program. monstahblackink.com


Collaborating Artist

Collaborator for Process memoir 5: The indigo kid.

Isaiah Jones

Isaiah Jones is a musician, performer, entrepreneur, and all-around creative based in New York City. He was born in Dinwiddie, VA, where he began his journey with music, and currently works in Music and Live Touring at a global talent agency. He has been playing and studying drums/percussion within various genres and settings for many years. From exploring traditional Western music and instruments to other world music, including Latin, European, Asian, and African percussion, he has developed a wide-ranging taste and perspective on music and its intersection with other forms of art.