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Nearly 50 years ago, two towering public figures, African-American author James Baldwin and white anthropologist Margaret Mead, sat together and recorded an epic and intimate seven-and-a-half-hour conversation about race in America. Now, choreographer Donald Byrd and playwright Anna Deavere Smith re-imagine that conversation in the present in A Rap on Race. This new dance-theater work combines text with movement and music to communicate the complexities of talking about race, at a time when that conversation is as necessary as ever.
Created by Yaron Lifschitz and the Circa Ensemble
Ten highly-skilled acrobats, a bare stage and a stirring journey of what it means to be human. Australia’s bold, contemporary circus troupe, Circa returns to the Annenberg Center with the U.S. premiere of Humans, a tour de force about the power in physical and emotional strength. The “stunning athleticism and heart-stopping acrobatics in this innovative circus work” (ArtsHub) explore the expressive possibilities of the human body at its extremes.
“A master of visual composition” (Dance Magazine), Bucks County native Jessica Lang is a superstar in the dance world. Called “sophisticated and intelligent” (The Los Angeles Times) and “moving and masterful” (Chicago Sun-Times), Lang’s ballet-based yet contemporary-driven works are rich with stunning movement, compelling musicality and beautiful cinematic composition. In a program of critically acclaimed Philadelphia premieres, this company will transform how you experience dance.
Tap, jazz and swing combine in the radiant choreography of Caleb Teicher, “one of the brightest lights in tap today.” (The New Yorker) A founding member of Dorrance Dance and the 2016 Dance Magazine “Best Emerging Choreographer,” Teicher’s signature style of musicality, humor and warmth will shine in Meet Ella, a swing duet set to Ella Fitzgerald, and Variations, a tap piece set to Bach’s timeless Goldberg Variations. Don’t miss the Philadelphia debut of Caleb Teicher & Company!
“. . .daring and original.” —NY Theater Guide
“One of the great companies of the world” (The New York Times), the Martha Graham Dance Company is one of the oldest and most celebrated contemporary dance companies on the planet. In the EVE Project, this iconic troupe stays true to Graham’s tradition of social activism with a program by all female choreographers commemorating the upcoming centennial of the 19th Amendment. Featuring the powerful Philadelphia premiere of Chronicle by Graham, as well as the first preview performance of a new work by contemporary superstars Maxine Doyle and Bobbi Jene Smith, this amazing company continues to inspire and impress the generations worldwide.
Welcome back the iconic Dance Theatre of Harlem with a world premiere work by Philadelphia native and resident choreographer, Robert Garland. This company of exceptionally-trained dancers breathes new life into classical ballet with masterful repertoire performed across the globe. This unparalleled force in dance performs a program of world and Philadelphia premieres.
New York-based contemporary troupe Dance Heginbotham makes its Philadelphia debut. Founded in 2012 by former Mark Morris Dance Group dancer John Heginbotham, this company quickly established itself with works of vibrant athleticism, humor and adventurous theatricality. Heginbotham has “a true theater artist’s instinct for commanding his audience” (The New York Times), so don’t miss this company’s first-ever performance in Philadelphia.
Contemporary dance meets Argentine tango in Sin Salida, a full-length work by award-winning choreographer Kate Weare and Esteban Moreno of the French/Argentinean tango troupe, Union Tanguera. With live music by Argentinean composer Gustavo Beytelmann, this riveting and sensual work explores the stark contrast of the tango coupling versus the individual focus in modern dance, posing the question: do we need others to perceive and understand ourselves? Don’t miss this unique cross-pollination of disciplines, cultures and values performed by two incredible dance companies.
Hailed for its superbly trained dancers and inventive choreography, Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers’ artistry is a hybrid of Asian philosophies and Western culture infused with a fearless physicality that resonates with the soul. Lush works of poetic sensibility, “Lin’s dances, simultaneously abstract and specific, create and inhabit worlds of their own” (The New York Times). Don’t miss KYL/D in its Annenberg Center debut!
Los Angeles-based BODYTRAFFIC is “known for its versatility, bringing vivid theatricality to a range of provocative works commissioned from some of today’s most dynamic choreographers.” (The Boston Globe) Blending contemporary, hip hop, jazz and ballet, this troupe will perform a program of Philadelphia premieres including A Million Voices, a work set to Peggy Lee classics by Pennsylvania Ballet resident choreographer and BalletX co-founder, Matthew Neenan.