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MoMA PS1 Dance Party Returns to Long Island City for Summer

Warm Up 2011. MoMA PS1.
Warm Up 2011. MoMA PS1.
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ELK Studios/Erin Kornfeld

QUEENS — Long Island City's about to get its fist pump on.

Starting this weekend, MoMA PS1 begins its Warm Up series — a showcase of experimental live music, sound, performance, and DJs that will rock in the museum’s courtyard throughout the summer.

The series, which celebrates its 15th year, attracts on average 3,000 people to each event, but some events see as many as 6,000 revelers, according to MoMA PS1 officials.

Every Saturday, roughly four to five performers will take the stage, playing their best hits.

Performers for this year's series will come from around the country and the world, including London, Barcelona and Atteridgeville in South Africa.

Ron Morelli, a Brooklyn-based DJ and label owner who loves to “play music at small bars,” is one of the local talents who will perform at Warm Up next weekend. This time he'll perform on a bigger stage, playing a mixture of “summer feel good sounds.”

He'll be followed by performances from three other DJs on his label L.I.E.S. – Jeremie Delon, Steve Summers and Professor Genius.

“It’s underground grass roots dance electronic music, all genres, house, techno, disco,” said Morrelli about artists whose music L.I.E.S. (which stands for Long Island Electrical Systems) has released.

Morelli, who studied literature and also works at A-1, a vinyl records store, started DJ’ing more than a decade ago and decided to open a label out of his Brooklyn apartment a couple of years ago.

“I had my own music and many of my friends also had their music. Someone had to put it out,” he said. “I didn’t want to wait and shop it around.”

Among other acts this year are Light Asylum from Brooklyn, Sepalcure from Berlin, and Thom Yorke’s Atoms for Peace from London.

“It’s sort of been an underground phenomenon since it began,” said Rebecca Taylor, MoMA PS1 Communications Director. The outdoor event, Taylor said, “has not changed much over the years. Maybe the acts just get better and better because the program has more and more notoriety,” she added.

Partygoers will gather in the museum's courtyard, which currently features a giant blue and spiky installation designed by Marc Kusher and Matthias Hollwich of HWKN called Wendy, the winning design of MoMA PS1’s annual Young Architects Program.

Wendy — composed of nylon fabric treated with a titania nanoparticle spray to neutralize airborne pollutants — also has an ecological effect, scrubbing the air as if 260 cars have been taken off the road.

Chefs from M.Wells, a famous LIC restaurateur, who will soon open a dinette at MoMA PS1, will be cooking in the courtyard all summer.

LIC residents receive one free ticket per event (with proof of residency).

Warm Up 2012 begins July 7 and will be taking place every Saturday this summer through Sept. 8.