DBDT Wraps Up Its 40th-Anniversary Season and Welcomes a New Director
Finding the right person to take the mantle of a 40-year-old American dance institution is no easy feat. But when Dallas-native choreographer Bridget L. Moore agreed to succeed Dallas Black Dance Theatre's founding artistic director, Ann Williams, the company knew it was a perfect fit.
For Moore this is a homecoming. It was DBDT that introduced her to dance as a youngster when the company's arts-in-education program visited her elementary school. Although she lived and worked in Seoul, South Korea, from 2014 to 2017, she maintained a creative relationship with DBDT, which supported her in facilitating connections with dancers from Korea and the U.S. Last year Korean dancers performed in Moore's work as guest artists for DBDT's Spring Celebration Series, and in January she presented a piece featuring both Korean and American dancers at the DBDT-hosted International Conference and Festival of Blacks in Dance.
"It is my aim to honor the legacy, hard work and efforts that have been put into making Dallas Black Dance Theatre what it is today," she says. Exactly how do you move the oldest continuously operating professional dance company in Dallas forward? Moore has a very clear vision: "Through innovative programming, delivering new contemporary dance works and devising initiatives that attract new audiences." —Theresa Ruth Howard
40 Years Strong
Dallas Black Dance Theatre concludes its 40th-anniversary season May 19–21 with its spring performance series at AT&T Performing Arts Center's Wyly Theatre. A work by Ballet Austin artistic director Stephen Mills is the centerpiece of the season finale, which also features Twyla Tharp's Sinatra Suite and guest artists from Ballet Austin. —Courtney Escoyne
DBDT in Matthew Rushing's TRIBUTE. Photo by Sharen Bradford—The Dancing Image, Courtesy DBDT.
Capezio, Bloch, So Dança, Gaynor Minden.
At the top of the line, dancers have plenty of quality footwear options to choose from, and in most metropolitan areas, stores to go try them on. But for many of North America's most economically disadvantaged dance students, there has often been just one option for purchasing footwear in person: Payless ShoeSource.
When Sonya Tayeh saw Moulin Rouge! for the first time, on opening night at a movie theater in Detroit, she remembers not only being inspired by the story, but noticing the way it was filmed.
"What struck me the most was the pace, and the erratic feeling it had," she says. The camera's quick shifts and angles reminded her of bodies in motion. "I was like, 'What is this movie? This is so insane and marvelous and excessive,' " she says. "And excessive is I think how I approach dance. I enjoy the challenge of swiftness, and the pushing of the body. I love piling on a lot of vocabulary and seeing what comes out."
Back when Robbie Fairchild graced the cover of the May 2018 issue of Dance Magazine, he mentioned an idea for a short dance film he was toying around with. That idea has now come to fruition: In This Life, starring Fairchild and directed by dance filmmaker Bat-Sheva Guez, is being screened at this year's Dance on Camera Festival.
While the film itself covers heavy material—specifically, how we deal with grief and loss—the making of it was anything but: "It was really weird to have so much fun filming a piece about grief!" Fairchild laughs. We caught up with him, Guez and Christopher Wheeldon (one of In This Life's five choreographers) to find out what went into creating the 11-minute short film.
When Hollywood needs to build a fantasy world populated with extraordinary creatures, they call Terry Notary.
The former gymnast and circus performer got his start in film in 2000 when Ron Howard asked him to teach the actors how to move like Whos for How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Notary has since served as a movement choreographer, stunt coordinator and performer via motion capture technology for everything from the Planet of the Apes series to The Hobbit trilogy, Avatar, Avengers: Endgame and this summer's The Lion King.
Since opening the Industry Dance Academy with his wife, Rhonda, and partners Maia and Richard Suckle, Notary also offers movement workshops for actors in Los Angeles.