A world premiere, a masterwork and a revival at the 2015 Fall Dance Concert Nov. 11-15

Danny Buraczeski

A world premiere, a masterwork and a revival at the 2015 Fall Dance Concert Nov. 11-15

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Deepa Liegal dancing “There is a Time” Photograph by Paul Phillips

The 2015 Fall Dance Concert will feature a world premiere, a masterwork and a revival.

Opening the program is the premiere of Wild and Precious, a contemporary ballet by Robert Dekkers. Created especially for the SMU Dance Ensemble, Wild and Precious is a celebration of both youthful energy and the evanescence of life. Performing choreography that is supremely physical and challenging, the dancers embody the dynamic spirit of “the body electric.”

The program continues with There Is a Time, a masterpiece of modern dance created in 1956 by José Limón and composer Norman Dello Joio, who earned a Pulitzer Prize in 1957 for the score. The work alludes to a chapter of Ecclesiastes and each movement of the work is titled with a biblical verse and embodies the human experience.

The New York’s Joyce Theater invited the SMU dancers to perform There Is a Time at the 70th anniversary celebration of the Limón Dance Company, which honors José Limón’s legacy, in October. The Meadows School of the Arts is one of only nine university dance programs internationally selected to perform.

Concluding the Fall Dance Concert is a restaging of the jazz work Swing Concerto by jazz dance artist and SMU faculty member Danny Buraczeski. The work synthesizes the grounded qualities of folk dance with the exuberance of the swing-era movement.

Fall Dance Concert performance times are 8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday in the Bob Hope Theatre, Owen Arts Center. Tickets are $13 for adults, $10 for seniors and $7 for SMU students, faculty and staff. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 214-768-2787 or visit the Meadows website.

November 9, 2015|Calendar Highlights, For the Record, News|

Two world premieres are highlights of Meadows’ 2015 Spring Dance Concert, March 25-29

Photographs from the 2015 Spring Dance Concert Rehearsal, taken by Kim Leeson.

Photographs from the 2015 Spring Dance Concert Rehearsal, taken by Kim Leeson.

The Meadows Dance Ensemble in SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts presents its 2015 Spring Dance Concert, March 25-29, in the Bob Hope Theatre, Owen Arts Center. 

This year’s concert features two world premieres by noted guest choreographers, as well as the revival of an acclaimed work by jazz dance artist and faculty member Danny Buraczeski.

The program opens with the premiere of Darkside by Artist-in-Residence John Selya. Based on the Tom Stoppard BBC radio play with music from Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon album, Selya’s Darkside brings a visual element to what has been a solely auditory work. In addition to teaching and choreographing at universities and dance companies across the nation, Selya is a Tony-nominated dancer and Broadway veteran.

The second performance features faculty member Danny Buraczeski‘s in the revival of his acclaimed 1999 piece Ezekiel’s Wheel. Inspired by the life and work of author and civil rights activist James Baldwin, Ezekiel’s Wheel is set to a percussive musical score interspersed with passages of Baldwin’s writings.

The program concludes with the premiere of The Hi Betty Cha-Cha by alumnus and founder and director of Dark Circles Contemporary Dance, Joshua Peugh (’06). Featuring five contrasting sections, the work is set to music by Dean Martin, as well as Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass.

Performance take place at 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sunday. Available for purchase online, tickets are $7 for SMU faculty, students and staff. For more information, contact the Meadows Ticket Office.

New Shen Wei work highlights 2012 Spring Dance Concert

SMU dancer Kaily Andriot rehearses 'Five Preludes' for the 2012 Spring Dance Concert

SMU dancer Kaily Andriot rehearses Adam Hougland's "Five Preludes" for the 2012 Meadows Spring Dance Concert. Photo credit: Sharen Bradford.

A new work by groundbreaking choreographer and 2010 Meadows Prize winner Shen Wei will be a marquee feature of SMU’s 2012 Spring Dance Concert. The show, presented by The Meadows Dance Ensemble of SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts, includes works by three award-winning choreographers and runs March 28-April 1 in the Bob Hope Theatre, Owen Arts Center.

This year’s works include the premiere of Five Preludes, a ballet by visiting artist-in-residence Adam HouglandSong Awakened by SMU faculty member and noted jazz dance artist Danny Buraczeski; and The New You, a world premiere by Shen Wei.

The concert opens with Five Preludes, a neo-classical ballet on pointe set to five Rachmaninoff preludes. Choreographer Adam Hougland, a Dallas native, is principal choreographer for the Louisville Ballet and resident choreographer for the Cincinnati Ballet. He has won both the Princess Grace Award and the Choo-San Goh Award for choreography and was named one of Dance Magazine’s “25 to watch” for 2011.

Next on the program is Buraczeski’s Song Awakened, a work set to the songs of Cesária Évora, a noted singer of Creole-Portuguese soul music. The work debuted to critical acclaim at New York’s Joyce Theater in 2001; The New York Times wrote that Buraczeski “makes his dancers voiceless musicians who use their bodies, alone and together, to add rhythms to (Evora’s).” The piece is presented in tribute to Ms. Évora, who passed away in December at age 70. Buraczeski, a nationally known jazz choreographer, has received commissions from such organizations as the Walker Art Center, the Library of Congress, and the American Dance Festival. He also has received multiple fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, for whom he is now a regular panelist and consultant.

> A slideshow of 2012 Spring Dance Concert images from Gary Shultz of SMU News

SMU dancers rehearse a Shen Wei world premiere, 'The New You.'

SMU dancers rehearse a Shen Wei world premiere, "The New You." The renowned choreographer created the work during his Meadows Prize residency at the University in 2012. Photo credit: Sharen Bradford.

Following intermission, the Meadows dancers will perform the world premiere of The New You by Shen Wei – an internationally renowned choreographer, director, dancer and designer and the artistic director of New York-based Shen Wei Dance Arts. Perhaps best know as the lead choreographer for the opening ceremonies of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Shen Wei created this new work from the ground up during his three-week Meadows Prize residency in January and February 2012.

“This work is about audiences experiencing new possibilities by building and revising systems that are sensed, but not necessarily known,” said Shen Wei. “Art opens doors we never thought had existed and enables us to access previously unknown dimensions. By sensing different art forms, audiences can discover novel structural foundations and embark on a new journey. I hope this experience can offer the students and the viewers an alternative possibility of space.”

Spring Dance Concert performance times are 8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $7 each for SMU faculty, staff and students. Free parking is available at Hillcrest and Binkley or in the garage under the Meadows Museum. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 214-768-2787 (214-SMU-ARTS).

Written by Victoria Winkelman

> Visit the Meadows School of the Arts homepage

March 28, 2012|Calendar Highlights, News|

Meadows Opera Theatre opens 2012 with The Marriage of Figaro

John Hendricks as Figaro and Julie Marx as Susanna in the 2012 Meadows Opera Theatre production of The Marriage of Figaro. Photo by Kim Ritzenthaler.

Cupid is at work and at play on Figaro and Susanna’s wedding day – but who is wooing whom?

Just in time for Valentine’s Day month, Meadows Opera Theatre and the Meadows Symphony Orchestra bring to life a cornerstone of the operatic repertoire, The Marriage of Figaro. The production runs Feb. 2-5, 2012, in the Bob Hope Theatre, Owen Arts Center.

The Marriage of Figaro – with or without its alternate title that translates as The Day of Madness – has charmed audiences since the debut of Pierre Beaumarchais’ original play in 1784. The working-class hero and heroine want only to celebrate their wedding in peace, but the competing agendas of friends, family members and even their aristocratic employers complicate the proceedings.

Count Almaviva, their master, has eyes for the bride, and a mysterious older woman lays claim to the groom. Countess Almaviva wants to win back her husband’s love, while the hormonal teenage page Cherubino wants to win the heart of every female he meets.

The play was banned in Vienna for a time because of its satire of the aristocracy, yet the 1786 opera became one of Mozart’s most successful works during his lifetime. (The composer himself directed its first two performances from the keyboard of his fortepiano.) It was the first of three collaborations with librettist Lorenzo da Ponte, with whom he also wrote Don Giovanni and Così fan tutte.

Njabulo Mthimkhulu as Count Almaviva, Julie Marx as Susanna and Paul Kroeger as Don Basilio in the 2012 Meadows Opera Theatre production of The Marriage of Figaro. Photo by Kim Ritzenthaler.

Mozart’s celebrated score will be performed by the Meadows Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Professor of Music and Director of Orchestral Activities Paul Phillips. Meadows Opera Theatre Director Hank Hammett directs the production, with choreography by Professor of Dance Danny Buraczeski.

The opera will be sung in Italian with projected English translation. Tickets are $7 each for SMU faculty, staff and students. Buy tickets for The Marriage of Figaro online at Vendini or contact the Meadows Ticket Office, 214-768-2787 (214-SMU-ARTS).

Find a complete cast list under the link below. (more…)

February 1, 2012|Calendar Highlights, News|

Spring Dance Concert honors Dance Theatre of Harlem founder

Paul Taylor's 'Cloven Kingdom' as performed in SMU's Spring Dance Concert 2009The Meadows Dance Ensemble in SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts presents its 2009 Spring Dance Concert April 1-5 in the Bob Hope Theatre, Owen Arts Center.

This year’s concert features the choreography of Arthur Mitchell and honors Mitchell’s 75th birthday as well as the 40th anniversary of the company he co-founded and directs, the Dance Theatre of Harlem.

Among the featured dances is Holberg Suite, choreographed by Mitchell in 1971 for the Dance Theatre of Harlem and included in George Balanchine’s Complete Stories of the Great Ballets.

The program also includes Paul Taylor’s Cloven Kingdom (right), based on Baruch Spinoza’s “Man is a social animal.”

The concluding dance will be Swing Concerto, choreographed by Associate Professor Danny Buraczeski, which celebrates the relationship between Eastern European Klezmer music and the swing orchestras of Artie Shaw and Benny Goodman.

Performances take place at 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $7 each for SMU faculty, staff and students. For more information, contact the Meadows Ticket Office, 214-768-2787 (214-SMU-ARTS).

April 1, 2009|Calendar Highlights, News|
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