Cheryl dance van

"Cheryl" plans spontaneous parties throughout the city

The Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

If you want to be in on the summer’s biggest dance craze, you’ll need to trust a bunch of bizarre-looking strangers and get in their van.

CHERYL, a Brooklyn-based arts collective, is raising money to purchase a vehicle and a pulsating sound system to throw mobile dance parties — a new take on performance art seemingly designed to intrigue or terrify onlookers.

The troupe’s four-step plan is to park the van in front of a crowd, start grooving on the sidewalk, invite willing participants to enter their vehicle, and then drive off to parts unknown.

“We would basically stop the van, pile out like a clown car and be on the street,” said CHERYL member Sarah Van Buren. “We want to be like some psycho version of the ice cream man. People will hear us coming and say ‘Wait, what the hell is this?’ ”

“We’ll go everywhere, the Home Depot by the Gowanus, outdoor movie screenings, airports — we’ll pick up signs that say: ‘You’ — and get them into the van to take them home,” said CHERYL member Stina Puotinen. “We may also stalk food trucks. We’ll tweet our locations.”

A Taxi and Limousine Commission spokesman said the party van does not appear to violate livery policies since CHERYL is not charging for rides, but urged the dance collective to review city regulations to avoid any unintended conflicts.

The troupe started throwing underground parties since 2008, and has since earned residencies at the Bell House and Littlefield — and just got back from England last week from a month-long tour.

But the costumed foursome needs the help of friends and fans to afford the van, so they started a Kickstarter fund-raising campaign.

Depending on the amount of money that donors fork over, they can receive payback in the form of “crazyvibes” sent from Cheryl members, “I CHERYL NY” SHIRTS, tickets to upcoming parties, homemade meatball dinners, and slumber parties planned by the troupe.

So far, the group has raised $2,303 — just over half their $4,000 goal.

Van Buren said the price is worth a summer of spontaneous movement.

“It’s hard to exist in New York as an artist these days — New York is sort of turning into a police state before our very eyes,” she said. “This is a way of lightening things a bit for everyone involved and remember why we live here.”

Reach reporter Aaron Short at or by calling (718) 260-2547.
Updated 5:33 pm, July 9, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Reasonable discourse

Mickey Shea from Greenpoint says:
Like yah
June 15, 2012, 9:02 am
Hipsterminator from Bushwick says:
Could those dancers get any fatter?
June 15, 2012, 10:07 am
Satori from Park Slope says:
CHERYL - hands down the best long running and inclusive party in the City. Born in Park Slope, they've toured Europe to sold out crowds two years in a row. If you're like the two people above, and this is your first clue that something different is happening, don't let it pass you by, there's a party tonight at The Bell House. The theme is PLAGUE, catch it.
June 15, 2012, 12:15 pm
Satori from Park Slope says:
Sorry, make that TOMORROW (Saturday) at Bell House.
June 15, 2012, 12:15 pm
Malembi from BK says:
2 words: gay
June 15, 2012, 2:14 pm
Destiny from Bed-Stuy says:
as an official member of CHERYL i just wanted to chime in here and confirm that yes, in fact, we are both fat and gay. thanks for your support!
Destiny CHERYL
June 15, 2012, 2:23 pm
Representador from Flushing says:
They have a party bus already, Colombian party van?

La Chiva....
June 16, 2012, 12:36 am
Saturday says:
Brooklyn becomes more corny, stupid, rat and beg bug infested and crowded by the week. What a bummer. It used to be a nice place.
June 16, 2012, 8:04 am
HaHa from LaLa says:
Ha, the one on the right is "sport'n"! the one on the left has no undies.

art, right.

get in their van, right.
June 17, 2012, 10:08 am

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: