Exploring the Intersection of Traditional and Contemporary Practice

Ronald K. Brown at a Kùlú Mèlé master class on January 5, 2013. Photo © Nathea Lee/PhotoBravura.

Celebrating its 50th anniversary season, Kùlú Mèlé, a local dance and drum ensemble dedicated to preserving dance and drumming traditions of Africa and the African Diaspora, engaged contemporary choreographer Ronald K. Brown, of Brooklyn’s Evidence dance company, for an extended residency to develop new approaches to its work. Brown, whose compositions have been performed by accomplished companies such as Alvin Ailey and PHILADANCO, shares Kùlú Mèlé’s interest in preserving African traditions. Brown’s own practice integrates forms that stem from these traditions with modern and urban styles. He worked with Kùlú Mèlé Artistic Director Dorothy Wilkie and dancers to expand the current repertoire and push Kùlú Mèlé to bridge these styles.

References

Grants & Grantees

Honor Molloy is a playwright and novelist, and a 1993 Pew Fellow.

The Village of Arts and Humanities supports the voices and aspirations of the community and inspires people to be agents of positive change through programs that encompass arts and culture, engage youth, revitalize community, preserve heritage, and respect the environment.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Susan Warden is an independent choreographer who served as artistic director for 940 Dance Company at the Lawrence (Kansas) Arts Center.

Drozdowski, a curator of performance, will host European duo Jonathan Burrows and Matteo Fargion for a two-week retrospective of their collaborative career.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Jaye Allison is a dancer and founder of Philly Tap challenge, whose work in the tap genre has been vital in keeping Philadelphia’s rich tap legacy in the public eye.

Promoting cultural exchanges between Ukrainians and the global community, Voloshky Ukrainian Dance Ensemble seeks to represent the country’s culture through dance.

The White Box Residencies invited outside artists to creatively explore and interact with the Center’s physical space.

Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, founding director of Urban Bush Women, on why “wanting profound social change and being an artist [are] not contradictory or binary places.”

Grants & Grantees

In 1993 the Center awarded Pew Fellowships to 16 Philadelphia-based artists, and grants to 13 dance organizations in the greater Philadelphia region.

Collaborators & Colleagues

After dancing as a member of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company from 1984 to 1993, and the White Oak Dance Project from 1994 to 1996, Patricia Lent teaches, stages, and conducts workshops at the Merce Cunningham Trust, where she is a Trustee and Director of Licensing.

Grants & Grantees

Gerald Levinson (Pew Fellow, 2007) has been increasingly recognized as one of the major composers of his generation.

Grants & Grantees

As a presenting arts organization, the Painted Bride offers a wide range of work in music, dance, spoken word, and theater.