The “Peabody Ballroom Experience” is a public humanities collaboration between the George Peabody Library and Baltimore’s ballroom community. The project aims to cultivate an exchange of knowledge between the ballroom community and Johns Hopkins by offering diverse opportunities for faculty, students, staff, and ballroom participants to come together as partners in education and interpretation. Ballroom leaders will share insights into the decades-long history of the city’s LGBTQ ball culture and discuss the forms of knowledge the art form has yielded about kinship, gender, sexuality, race, and performance.
Project components include:
- Film screenings and roundtable discussions
- Workshops and presentations by Hopkins library staff
- Vogue workshops with the Peabody Dance Department
- 15 oral histories with Baltimore’s ballroom community
- A documentary film and printed project catalogue
- a ball competition at the Peabody Library, where participants will interpret the library’s collections through costume and stylized performance.
- Joseph Plaster, “Black Queer Performance in Baltimore’s ‘Cathedral of Books,’” The Abusable Past, digital venue for the Radical History Review, Oct 2019.
- “Ballroom Blitz,” Johns Hopkins HUB, Oct. 15, 2019.
- “No Glitter Allowed: Ballroom 101,” Bmore Art, Apr. 18, 2019.