Performances Onstage this Month
Flyaway Productions' Alayna Stroud. Photo by RJ Muna, courtesy Flyaway Productions.
San Francisco For three years, Flyaway Productions has been exploring urban poverty by dancing in the streets, or, more specifically, in the air above them. Jo Kreiter's final installment in her study, Needles to Thread: Dancing Along These Lines in Continuum Alley, will focus on wage security for garment workers. Twelve free performances in the Tenderloin neighborhood, Oct. 1-10. flyawayproductions.com.
Jesús Carmona. Photo by Emilio Tenorio, courtesy City Center.
Fall for Dance Expands to Canada
Toronto New York City Center’s Fall for Dance festival has created such a successful formula—cheap tickets for diverse programs of excellent companies—that it has spawned a sister event, Fall for Dance North. For its debut edition, the festival is importing Nrityagram from India and DanceBrazil, plus national favorites National Ballet of Canada, Peggy Baker Dance Projects and Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company. Dancers from Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater will bring Robert Battle’s electric solo Takademe and Christopher Wheeldon’s serene contemporary classic, After the Rain pas de deux. Sept. 29–Oct. 1, Sony Centre for the Performing Arts. ffdnorth.com.
New York City Here’s what’s on tap for the 12th-annual celebration at New York City Center: ballet (Miami City Ballet, Houston Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Boston Ballet), modern (Doug Elkins, Pam Tanowitz, Ailey, Paul Taylor Dance Company, Stephen Petronio Company, L-E-V), cultural dance (Che Malambo, La Compagnie Hervé KOUBI, Companhia Urbana de Dança, Nrityagram, Jesús Carmona & Cía), tap (Dorrance Dance and The Royal Ballet’s Steven McRae—yes, you read that right) and cross-genre collaborations (Fang-Yi Sheu and Herman Cornejo, and Bill Irwin and Tiler Peck). Sept. 30–Oct. 11. nycitycenter.org.
Trisha Takes Philly
Trisha Brown's Leaning Duets. Photo by John Mallison, courtesy Bryn Mawr.
Philadelphia area Even today, Trisha Brown’s rule-breaking experiments in weight, gravity and coordination reveal new layers of complexity with each viewing. Through June 2016, Bryn Mawr College is offering an exhibition and classes, lectures and performances on its campus and across Philadelphia that let us take a closer look. To kick off the dancing, Trisha Brown Dance Company will perform a program of early works outside (Leaning Duets, Sticks, Spanish Dance, Group Primary Accumulation and Figure 8) on Oct. 18, and those made for the stage (Set and Reset, If you couldn’t see me and PRESENT TENSE), Oct. 23–24. trishabrown.brynmawr.edu.
Forsythe répétiteur Dana Caspersen setting Quintett. Photo by Todd Rosenberg, courtesy Hubbard Street.
Chicago and Ann Arbor William Forsythe’s flashy pointework peppers the repertoire of several U.S. ballet companies, but we don’t as often get to see his modern dance works stateside. So it will be exciting to watch the movers and groovers of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago take on a full evening of it. There’s Quintett, a somber yet playful work that Forsythe made for his terminally ill wife in 1993; N.N.N.N., making Hubbard Street the first U.S. company to acquire the piece; and the loud and epic table dance, One Flat Thing, reproduced. The series will visit Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Oct. 15–18, before traveling to University of Michigan, Oct. 27. harristheaterchicago.org, ums.org.
Invisible Thread rehearsal. Photo by Jimmy Ryan, courtesy ART.
A Do-It-All Dancemaker
New York City Darrell Grand Moultrie has choreographed for ballet, Beyoncé and now off-Broadway: Diane Paulus’ Invisible Thread, which ran at American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, MA, last year under the title Witness Uganda, is transferring to Second Stage Theatre. The musical, about a young man who volunteers in Uganda, will run Oct. 31–Dec. 20. 2st.com.
Jenny May Peterson in Girl Gods. Photo courtesy Montclair.
Seattle and Montclair, NJ Seattle’s beacon of feminism in dance, Pat Graney, mixes serious issues with absurdism. Like Pina Bausch, she offers surreal imagery, though less glamorous and more grounded. Her newest premiere, Girl Gods, explores themes of family history and the rage many women feel toward society. To underline the contrast between good behavior and the tumult within, her five dancers don cocktail dresses and dance on a blanket of dirt. On the Boards, Oct. 1–4, and Montclair State University’s Peak Performances, Oct. 22–25. ontheboards.org, peakperfs.org.
Booking a gig on a cruise ship can feel like you're diving into the unknown—dropping everything to live in the middle of the ocean without family, friends or cell service. But cruise jobs can also offer incredible rewards, like traveling the world for free and delving into a new style.
Is ship life the right fit for you? Here are some elements to consider.
We knew that New York downtown dance darling Okwui Okpokwasili was a big deal. Critics and audiences have been raving about her dance-theater works for years, and the new documentary about her, Bronx Gothic, has attracted the attention of the larger arts community.
But never in our wildest dreams did we imagine she'd show up in a Jay Z video, along with flex dancer Storyboard P. Though we're slightly less surprised to see Storyboard in Jay Z's "4:44" video than we were to see Okpokwasili, we're jazzed that two of our favorites are featured on such a huge platform. (We're also feeling #blessed that we didn't have to subscribe to Tidal to watch this.)
Throughout the years, choreographer Seán Curran has worked with a diverse array of talented collaborators—from Kyrgyz music ensemble Ustatshakirt Plus to the the Grammy Award–winning King's Singers. But perhaps none are as meaningful as his most recent group of co-choreographers: At-risk teens from the after school program and nonprofit The Wooden Floor.
Curran has been in residence with The Wooden Floor since June, where he's worked with students to build choreography based on their lives and communities:
Their creation will be shown July 20-22 at The Wooden Floor Studio Theatre in Santa Ana, California.
"Besides the stage, baking is my other happy place," says New York City Ballet corps member Jenelle Manzi.
Four years ago, she thought her baking days were over when she was diagnosed with gluten intolerance. Manzi had been dealing with pain, frequent illness and joint inflammation for nearly 10 years. Once she cut out gluten, Manzi gradually started to feel better, noticing a transformation in how her body felt and functioned. She found her joints were less inflamed, and she got sick less often.
New York City Ballet soloist Unity Phelan and American Ballet Theatre soloist Cassandra Trenary spend every day making their hard work look effortless and graceful both in the studio and onstage. That's exactly what makes them the perfect spokesmodels for the dance-inspired activewear line, Belle Force.
To celebrate our 90th anniversary, we excavated some of our favorite hidden gems from the DM Archives—images that capture a few of the moments in time we've documented over the decades.
This image was captured during a 1978 New York City Ballet tour that took the company to Copenhagen—home turf for Adam Luders (right), who trained at the Royal Danish Ballet School and briefly danced with the company before joining NYCB as a principal dancer in 1975. Next to Luders is (of course) George Balanchine, in conversation with ballerina Suzanne Farrell. And looking on with a smile? NYCB's current ballet master in chief Peter Martins.
On March 8, 2016, Rami Shafi found himself inspired to film an impromptu dance video of his best friend, Aaron Moses Robin, improvising on Gay St. in New York City's Greenwich Village. Thus was born Pedestrian Wanderlust, a collection of dance videos that has grown to include a monthly improv jam.
Shafi works with anyone who wants to take part in the project, filming videos in locations chosen by the dancers and later adding music. The videos are shot on Shafi's iPhone in one take and, other than the starting and ending points, are entirely improvised. The editing afterwards—including the music choice—is minimal. "I don't like to edit too much. It's just what it is," says Shafi. "I usually can do the editing on the train ride home."