Flex dancers rehearse for FLEXN. Photograph by Stephanie Berger.
Flex dancers rehearse for FLEXN. Photograph by Stephanie Berger.

Every so often, a dance form rises from the street to attract a broader audience. Break dancing went mainstream in the ’80s, voguing in the ’90s. Flex—which tells stories through graceful body contortions that can suddenly erupt into staccato, glitchy bursts—has ascended quickly in the past year: Online videos of one of its foremost talents, Storyboard P, have garnered more than 10 million views. Starting this month, the phenomenon is getting the high-art treatment at New York’s Park Avenue Armory, where the visionary theater director Peter Sellars and Reggie “Regg Roc” Gray, a godfather of flex culture, are staging Flexn, from March 25 through April 4, a performance piece starring about 20 dancers from the Brooklyn neighborhoods where the genre first blew up.