Transform Fest Schedule — Fall 2017

Transform, YBCA’s new festival, celebrates the power of ideas through transformative performance. Each fall and spring, we will convene leading contemporary artists for a provocative showcase of dance, theater, and music. Through these performances and a full schedule of participatory experiences, Transform brings artists and the public together in ways that can only happen at YBCA.

See Transform Fest — Spring 2018

The Fall 2017 presentation of Transform Fest has passed, but tickets are now available for the Spring 2018 lineup.

Performances. Ideas. Action.
Why Citizenship?

This fall the festival is built around the urgent question: Why Citizenship? From the seven newly commissioned performances by prolific Bay Area artists—spanning from contemporary dance to experimental performance—to pop-up installations, community conversations, and even a late-night party that creates dance floor citizenship, each aspect of Transform will inspire and provoke you.


Thu–Sat, Sep 14–23, 8PM
YBCA has commissioned seven Bay Area dance companies and choreographers to create new works that serve as the centerpiece of Transform Fest. With a lineup spanning contemporary ballet, dance theater, performance art/movement, and experimental and contemporary dance, this fall’s Transform is one of YBCA’s most ambitious dance productions ever.

Thu, Sep 14 & Fri Sep 22: Embodiment Project & Jesse Hewit
Fri Sep 15 & Sat, Sep 23: RAWdance & Fauxnique
Sat, Sep 16 & Thu, Sep 21: Amy Seiwert’s Imagery, Larry Arrington/Sandra Lawson Ndu/Minoosh Zomorodinia, & Fogbeast

*YBCA Members receive the following benefits to Transform unless otherwise noted.

Pay What You Can level: Regular admission

Individual level and above: 20% off regular admission

All Access and above: FREE admission for all events

To purchase online, login with your YBCA account to unlock member prices.

Not yet a YBCA Member? Join now »


Thu–Sat, Sep 14–23, 6:30–7:30PM
Each evening, YBCA turns over its Grand Lobby to artists, activists, and guest experts for a free event designed around audience interaction. From the General Counsel of Humanity United to a former leader of the Black Panther Party, Transform Labs give everyone a chance to discuss and respond to Why Citizenship?

Thu, Sep 14: Sanctuary City founders Sergio De La Torre and Chris Treggiari, lead a printmaking workshop with the aim to raise awareness about the concept of being a “Sanctuary City.”
Fri, Sep 15: Lawrence Mendenhall, General Counsel for Humanity United, focuses on genocide and human trafficking.
Sat Sep 16: Carol Swann and Krista DeNio will lead a participatory dialogue around individuals, communities and how they best organize for resource sharing
Thu, Sep 21: Dedicated to intercultural collaboration, Byron Au Yong composes songs ​of dislocation prompted by a broken lineage. ​​He teaches in Performing Arts & Social Justice at the University of San Francisco and will lead a singing discussion about coming of age in an age of guns.
Fri, Sep 22: Ericka Huggins, activist, former political prisoner & leader in the Black Panther Party
Sat Sep 23: Marc Bamuthi Joseph, Chief of Programs and Pedagogy for YBCA



Sat, Sep 16 & 23, 5:30–6:30PM
YBCA Fellows have been investigating questions of equity and citizenship for the past year. Experience their creative responses through dynamic installations and pop-up performances throughout the Grand Lobby and the upstairs Gallery Terrace.

Participating YBCA Fellows:
A’Darius Bell
Lukas Brekke-Miesner
Yueqi Chen
Saideh Eftekhari
Cristiana Giordano
Chris Hamamoto
Eli Marienthal
Takeshi Moro
Dorothy Santos
Emma Tramposch
Miriam Wolodarski


Sat, Sep 16, 9PM
$15 at the door / FREE for YBCA Members or with performance ticket

Celebrate the inaugural Transform Fest with a late-night dance party. There’s nothing like a soulful night of music and beats to bring everyone together as citizens of the dance floor.


Sun, Sep 17 & 24, 2PM
Join us for a screening of the documentary film Bronx Gothic, a portrait of the actress and writer Okwui Okpokwasili, which looks at her creative process and the social issues raised by her one-woman show of the same name.

Get Tickets >>

An exclusive event for YBCA Members at All Access level and above
Happy Hour: Transform

Fri, Sep 22, 5:30PM
YBCA Members can RSVP to

The inaugural Transform Fest is centered around the question Why Citizenship?, which is reflected in all elements from the stage design to the programmatic choices. Join festival producers Marc Bamuthi Joseph and Isabel Yrigoyen for a hosted happy hour and private viewing of the Transform stage as they share an insider’s look into the environmental and curatorial design of this festival.

An exclusive event for YBCA Members at All Access level and above, tickets to this event includes a free drink to enjoy at the Transform Lab from 6:30-7:30, featuring activist Ericka Huggins, a former political prisoner and leader in the Black Panther Party.


Join festival curators and designers for conversations and tours that take you further inside the world of this exciting festival.

Thu, Sep 21, 6:30–8PM
FREE with performance ticket
Before the show, experience the set installation created by architect and designer Giacomo Castagnola, in collaboration with the performing artists, that serves as the visual centerpiece of the festival.

Sat, Sep 23, POST-SHOW
FREE with performance ticket
Join festival curator Marc Bamuthi Joseph and architect and designer Giacomo Castagnola in conversation about the design process behind Transform. What were the challenges and learnings in designing a collaborative space for seven different performing groups working in such a diverse array of genres? And how does one design a set around the question Why Citizenship?


Sat, Sep 23, 12PM–4PM
50 cents
One Nation Under a Groove edition: the 50 Cent Tabernacle is a series of open, mixed-level dance classes with some of the Bay Area’s foremost masters of the craft. Participants can attend as many classes as they wish, and all classes are for beginners and advanced dancers alike. Proceeds from 50 Cent Tabernacles support YBCA’s youth art programs.

Transform: UPONYAJI – immigrant stories by TransLatinas & Dreamers

Sat, Sep 16, 5:30PM – 8PM

El/La Para TransLatinas, seeks to invest in urgently needed community education and outreach to increase awareness of the particular needs and issues facing translatina (transgender Latinas) immigrants and to help these trans women lay the groundwork for strong political asylum cases. Susana Cáceres, Executive Director of El/La will facilitate two workshops.

5:30PM-6:30PM  Program Director of El/La Para TransLatinas, Jessy D’ Santo, will share her experiences as a translatina that went through the political asylum process.

6:30PM-7:50PM  El/ La will co-facilitate a talk-back with Nicholas Madina a participant and the artists of the Documentary Film “The Dream Movement”