Diva Takes a Dive: Sarah Michelson Injured

Five days before the scheduled Thursday opening of her new Daylight at P.S.122 (see "Despondent Diva" Village Voice, January 4-11), choreographer Sarah Michelson broke the fifth metatarsal bone in her right foot. During a rehearsal at the Kitchen on Sunday afternoon, she claims, a subfloor broke, causing her to fall over. An X-ray on Monday revealed the fracture. "I have no insurance, and even though I work there, I'm not eligible for coverage by the Kitchen's insurance or workers comp," says Michelson, who is a curatorial advisor to the organization's performance programming.

Deborah Singer, the Kitchen's executive director, says her organization is investigating the situation. "At Sarah's request, we let her rehearse her P.S. 122 show at the Kitchen after hours. We are so upset that she injured herself, and we immediately followed up about the possibility of workers comp, and are examining our floor. Unfortunately this situation falls outside workers comp parameters. In this instance, I myself wouldn't have been covered."

Michelson is wearing a special shoe to protect her foot and keep it from articulating. By Monday afternoon she was back in the theater, supervising a technical rehearsal of the show's lighting and sound. On Tuesday her troupe and staff finished the spacing and lighting rehearsal.

The first two weeks of Daylight's run have been canceled; audiences are invited Monday, January 17 through Saturday, January 22. But it's not only two weeks of shows that have been lost. "I can't go back to work teaching yoga to pay my December rent," says the choreographer. "I have to rest my foot to be able to work on the stage in the third week, even though the doctor says it actually takes a minimum of four weeks to heal. We'll have a dress rehearsal Wednesday; on Friday we'll meet in the space with presenters who've expressed interest in touring the project. We don't want to lose our forward momentum.

"I'll take Saturday and Sunday off to rest my foot, and next week we'll reconfigure the choreography in order for me to be able to do it without injuring myself further," she said. "It was too devastating to consider making an altered version; the more we thought about it, the more we realized we had to postpone the opening until the 17th, when we'll try to do two shows a night through the 22nd."

Due to Sarah Michelson's injury, the entire run of Daylight has been canceled.

 
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