The Lewis Center for the Arts’ Program in Dance presents the 2014 Spring Dance Festival, a dance concert showcasing more than 50 students performing in repertory by distinguished, internationally renowned choreographers Kyle Abraham, Bill T. Jones and Doug Varone, a premiere by Princeton Hodder Fellow Pam Tanowitz, and in new dances created by faculty members Tina Fehlandt and Rebecca Lazier. The Festival will be presented on Friday, February 21, at 8:00 p.m., Saturday, February 22, at 2:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m., and Sunday, February 23, at 1:00 p.m. at the Berlind Theatre at McCarter Theatre Center in Princeton.
Excerpts from Love Re-Defined by Bill T. Jones have been staged by former company member Stuart Singer. Inspired by Love Defined, a 1992 commission for the Lyon Opera Ballet, Love Re-Defined (1996) is a “powerful...immediate” and “moving” (The San Francisco Chronicle) ensemble work that embodies Jones’ distinct and poetic style, drawing freely from both classical and modern movement vocabularies. Set to Daniel Johnston’s innocent and whimsical music and featuring décor by Donald Baechler, Love Re-Defined is an energetic reflection on love and human relationships. Jones received a Kennedy Center Honors award in 2010, a Tony Award for Best Choreography in 2010 for FELA!, and a 2007 Tony Award and 2007 Obie Award for his choreography for Spring Awakening. He has created over 140 works for the company he founded with his late partner, the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company. He has collaborated with such artists as Toni Morrison, Max Roach, Jessye Norman and Keith Haring. Jones received a MacArthur “Genius” Award in 1994 and in 2000 The Dance Heritage Coalition named him, “An Irreplaceable Dance Treasure.” Singer performed with Jones’ company, as well as the companies of Wally Cardona, Doug Varone and Lucinda Childs. He choreographs and teaches extensively throughout the U.S.
Continuous Relation by recent MacArthur “Genius” Award-winner Kyle Abraham features music by Pan Sonic. Abraham describes the piece as a driving thrill ride of uniquely physical and personal movement invention blending street and classic modern dance influences. Abraham is director of Abraham.In.Motion and has received a Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award, is a U.S.A. Ford Fellow, and is a New York Live Arts Resident Commissioned Artist for 2012-14.
An excerpt from Doug Varone’s Chapters from a Broken Novel, staged by Eddie Taketa with an original score by David Van Tieghem, is inspired by Varone’s collection of quotes from books, films and overheard conversations -- some humorous, some dramatic, some purely physical. Varone is an award-winning choreographer and director working internationally in dance, theater, opera, film, television and fashion and is director of Doug Varone and Dancers based in New York City. He has created work for the Limon Company, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Israel’s Batsheva Dance Company, New York City Opera, Lincoln Center, Broadway productions, designer Geoffrey Beene’s runway shows, and the Patrick Swayze film, One Last Dance. Taketa has been a member of Varone’s company since 1994 and has performed with such companies as Lar Lubovitch Dance Company, Murray Louis Dance Company, and Nikolais Dance Theatre. He has also performed in the Jacob's Pillow's Men Dancers: The Ted Shawn Legacy. He teaches and choreographs as a Guest Artist in Dance at Connecticut College.
Pam Tanowitz, a 2013-14 Hodder Fellow at Princeton, has created a dance that draws from previous choreographic works with her New York company. Passagen is set to a score by John Zorn and explores the tension created between traditional dance forms filtered through a new lens. She founded her own company in 2000 and has received commissions and residencies at The Kitchen, Dance Theater Workshop, Danspace Project, the Guggenheim Museum’s Works & Process program, and Baryshnikov Arts Center. The piece was staged by Melissa Toogood, who currently performs with Tanowitz’s company, as well as Rashaun Mitchell & Silas Riener Dance and Stephen Petronio Company, and is a former member of Merce Cunningham Dance Company and currently a Merce Cunningham Fellow.
Rebecca Lazier will present Matters, a new work set to Caroline Shaw’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Courante from Partita for 8 Voices, recorded by the vocal ensemble Room Full of Teeth. The recording won this year’s Grammy Award for Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance. Shaw is a graduate student in Princeton’s Department of Music. The dance, filled with images of cohesion, fragmentation, and manipulation, was created in collaboration with the dancers and draws from their idiosyncratic movement styles. Lazier has been a member of the Princeton dance faculty since 2003. She has performed, choreographed and taught throughout the U.S. and internationally. Her Brooklyn-based company develops collaborative work with dancers, composers, directors and sound designers. The premiere this past summer of her most recent work, Coming Together/Attica, based on the legendary prison riot, received a glowing review by The New York Times as having “an exciting immediacy.”
Faculty member Tina Fehlandt choreographed a new ballet for eleven dancers, To the Third Power. The Dance Program’s Resident Music Director, Vince di Mura, composed the first two movements of the score and his 19-year-old son, rock guitarist Dre Di Mura, composed the third movement. Performed live, and premiering at Spring Dance Festival, the score includes electric guitars, keyboards, drums, and bass. Fehlandt was a member of the Mark Morris Dance Group from its inception in 1980 to 2000, appearing in over 50 of Morris’ works. She has staged Morris’ work at companies throughout the U.S. and abroad, teaches extensively in ballet and modern dance, and has worked for the Emmy Award-winning Dance in America television series. Her choreography has been performed by Houston Ballet II, Deep Ellum Ensemble, and as part of the Lewis Center’s Evening of Enchantment.
“I am thrilled with the way our dancers have risen to the demands required by this rich, diverse, and challenging program of dance,” states Susan Marshall, Director of the Program in Dance.
The Berlind Theatre is an accessible venue. Assistive listening devices are available upon request when attending a performance, and large print programs may be requested. Patrons in need of other access accommodations are invited to contact the Lewis Center at 609.258.5262 or LewisCtr-Comm@princeton.edu for assistance at least two weeks prior to the selected performance.
Reserved seating tickets for the Spring Dance Festival are $15, $10 for students and seniors, and are available through the McCarter box office at 609.258.2787 or on-line at www.mccarter.org, through Princeton University Ticketing by calling 609.258.9220 or on-line at www.princeton.edu/utickets/, or at the Frist Campus Center Ticket Office.
Link to photos: https://lca.sharefile.com/d/s06c0e9b9b314a4c8
Photo captions 1-3: Students in Princeton’s Program in Dance rehearse for the 2014 Spring Dance Festival.
Photo credit: Photos by Marcos Cisneros