Growing Payne

The painful life experiences of Darrell Payne act as a catalyst for his continual growth as an artist and man.


Film Synopsis


Charting seven major episodes in Darrell’s life, the film explores themes of death, sexuality, mental illness, epidemic, failure, achievement, and discovery, all evaluated through the lens of perseverance and motivation. Each of these episodes is articulated through dance, both abstractly and directly expressing its core concept. Supported by commentary by Darrell and other dance professionals, the film supports and evaluates dance’s role in society as both visual, artistic medium and healing agent.

The film charts the chronology of Darrell’s dance career, which at first is filled with hope and optimism, and soon replaced by tragedy and misfortune. However, a willingness to succeed, thrive and of course, dance is what has allowed Darrell to evolve with a singular vision and successfully exist at the intersection of dance and art.