Vital Signs

October 25, 2010


Bravo Tango

They’re sensuality incarnate, with eyes like molten lava. Welcome to Luis Bravo’s Forever Tango, which brings Argentine history and tradition to Dance Celebration’s “Superstars of Dance, Today and Tomorrow,” Nov. 16–20. The show enjoyed an astounding 92-week run on Broadway, and now its 14 passionate dancers, plus singers and an 11-piece traditional orchestra featuring a bandoneon, burn up the floor at Philadelphia’s Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. See



Trash, Begone!

Big Dance Theater has got a big, green plan. During its month-long rehearsal residency at Baryshnikov Arts Center this summer, the company upheld a zero tolerance trash policy, ending each day with empty garbage cans. Curious how they did it? By replacing all “single-use items”—disposable water bottles, plastic food containers, paper towels—with mugs, Tupperware, and cloth napkins. Catch the company performing Comme Toujours Here I Stand at MCA Chicago Nov. 4­–7. See



Spuck Goes Canuck

Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal performs the North American premiere of Leonce and Lena, Christian Spuck’s comic ballet based on Georg Büchner’s 1838 political satire of the same name. Spuck, who is a resident choreographer at Stuttgart Ballet and who will become director of Zurich Ballet in 2012, uses Strauss waltzes to tell his tale that pokes fun of European royalty. Oct. 21–30 and Nov. 4–6. See



Wherefore Art Thou

Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers will meet their tragic fate at the Kennedy Center this month in Septime Webre’s production of Romeo + Juliet for The Washington Ballet. Created for TWB in 2005 (streamlined from previous versions for American Repertory Ballet and TWB), Webre has refocused the action on the central couple and uses the famous Prokofiev score to dramatic effect. See



Zenon: Warrior Women

Repertory troupes are a rare breed in the modern dance world, where most companies focus on the work of a single choreographer. But Zenon Dance Company, in Minneapolis, is committed to inviting outside choreographers in. The company’s fall season salutes “Women Choreographers of the Americas.” NYC-based Colleen Thomas, who layers fearlessness with fragile convolutions, sets a new piece, as does Uruguay-born Luciana Achugar, known for her brooding, ritualistic, eerie dances. Also on the program: Picnic, Lightning from Batsheva disciple Andrea Miller and Like an Octopus, a tango-inspired duet by Argentinian Susana Tambutti. Nov. 18–20 and 26–28 at the Southern Theater. See



Corella Ballet, CA Bound

The unstoppable energy of Ángel Corella barrels into Southern California this month as his Corella Ballet Castilla y León makes its West Coast debut. Highlights include Christopher Wheeldon’s DGV: Danse à Grand Vitesse, with Wheeldon’s trademark swirling lifts and a looming backdrop of metallic sculpture that alludes to the cool speed of France’s fastest trains, and Soleá, the joyful Maria Pagés duet for Ángel and sister Carmen. At the Ahmanson Theatre in L.A. Nov. 5–7, and The Granada in Santa Barbara Nov. 8. See



Pointe Park Record

Last August, American Ballet Theatre’s Michele Wiles led 229 other dancers in setting a new Guinness World Record of “Most Ballerinas on Pointe at One Time.” Organized by photographer Gene Schiavone and former ABT trustee Ellen Schiavone, the event brought professional, pre-professional, female, and male dancers together in Central Park for a good cause: Over $2000 was raised for the dance programs at the Boys and Girls Club.



Tour de Force

After last month’s home season of works by Nacho Duato, Ohad Naharin, and Victor Quijada, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago hits the road, bringing their high energy to Cleveland (Nov. 6), Washington, DC (Nov. 12–13), and Dallas (Nov. 19). The lineup includes old favorites like Jiri Kylián’s 27’52” and Aszure Barton’s Untouched, and a new work by resident choreographer Alejandro Cerrudo. See



Staying Alive

On July 29, the dance community came together to save Ballet Nouveau Colorado (a 2009 “25 to Watch”). To help bridge the $300,000 shortfall the company was facing last April, dancers from Oregon Ballet Theatre, The Washington Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, Ballet Memphis, Cleo Parker Robinson Dance, and Colorado Ballet donated their time and talent. The company is going full speed ahead into 2011, and plans to perform Chasing the Sublime, a co-production with the Lakewood Cultural Center, this month. For Sublime, three choreographers are paired with three Denver-area visual artists. At the Lakewood Cultural Center (Nov. 5–7) and at the Performing Arts Compex in Denver (Nov. 12–14). See



Contibutors: Siobhan Burke, Debbie Schneider, Kina Poon


Pictured: Valentina Azul in
Forever Tango. Photo by Luis Bravo, Courtesy Dance Affiliates.