New York choreographer David Gordon—a founding artist of the Judson Dance Theater, New York’s influential experimental company from the 1960s— worked with Susan Hess Modern Dance to re-envision his dance theater work Uncivil Wars: Moving with Brecht & Eisler (2009). Uncivil Wars is based on Bertolt Brecht and Hanns Eisler’s legendary play Roundheads and Pointheads, which was first produced in 1936. Of Gordon’s subversive aesthetic and trademark unpredictability, dance critic Suzanne Carbonneau writes, “Gordon is not interested in conforming to ideas of what he should be doing […] rather, his interests lie in expanding ideas about what performance can be.” Susan Hess Modern Dance collaborated with Gordon’s Pick Up Performance Co(S.) to find cast members for the Philadelphia production in 2014. Concurrent with this process, Gordon led a series of open rehearsals participated in a session with local choreographers about their work. Theater critic and translator of the version of Roundheads and Pointheads on which Gordon based his work led a presentation at the conclusion of the final open rehearsal.
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.”
Jay Sanders is curator of performance at the Whitney Museum of American Art.
In March 2005, The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage invited choreographer and dance artist Wendy Rogers to lead a presentation and town hall discussion for dance makers and cultural practitioners.
The Unofficial Guide to Audience Watching Performance is an evening-length autobiographical dance, the culmination of Philadelphia-based breakdancer Raphael Xavier’s 30 years of experience in hip-hop genres. Xavier, a 2013 Pew Fellow, plays with the rhythms of rap, break dancing and narrative to draw parallels between the performer’s body and the stage itself.
Voloshky Ukrainian Dance Ensemble released a video trailer for its Center-funded performance, Steppes: A Crossover, featuring the premiere of a piece by Mark Morris.
Founded in 2005 by Christine Cox and Matthew Neenan, BalletX unites distinguished choreographers with a company of world-class dancers to “forge new works of athleticism, emotion, and grace.”
“Extraordinary Indian classical dancer” Sarukkai performed at the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, a Center-funded concert presented by Sruti, the India Music and Dance Society.
A new play by Kira Obolensky demonstrated how family stories are passed on through generations.
Jones is a movement performance artist who intertwines personal history, diasporic movement, social commentary, and interdisciplinary methods, drawing from, in her words, “the individual and collective lived experiences of blackness.”
This project investigated various issues surrounding (co-)authorship in cultural production, asking questions around definitions of authorship, collaboration, audience participation, the influence of marketplace, and other concepts.
Philadelphia choreographer Nichole Canuso presents a solo performance that uses personal reminiscences and universal yearnings to explore the relationship between memory and self.
Martha Clark’s dance-theater work was inspired by photographs by Diane Arbus, Ralph Eugene Meatyard, and Helen Levitt.