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March 01, 2017

DANCECleveland Announces 2017-18 Season Dance from All Angles Featuring Nine Renowned Dance Companies, Free Performances & American Dance Festival in Cleveland

DANCECleveland Announces 2017-18 Season

Dance from All Angles

Featuring Nine Renowned Dance Companies, Free Performances & American Dance Festival in Cleveland

Subscriptions on sale March 4 for the 2017-2018 DANCECleveland Season

CLEVELAND (February 22, 2017) Northeast Ohio's premiere dance presenter, DANCECleveland, will launch its 2017-2018 season of Dance from All Angles beginning with two free "Thank You" performances featuring a new work co-commissioned by DANCECleveland and the Cleveland Foundation in June and continuing its season with the first-ever American Dance Festival (ADF) in Cleveland, July 29- August 5. The Main Season is set to open October 1, 2017 in Akron and will continue with dance companies ranging from favorite modern dance classics to the Ohio debuts of world-acclaimed international companies. The season will give audiences a look at dance from all angles by expanding the vocabulary of dance techniques for them to experience, whether it is the expression of hip hop or the energy of Argentinian cowboys.

The season will begin with the rhythmic Cuban dance company, Malpaso, which opens the season with two free ticketed performances June 2 and 3 at 7:30 pm in the Ohio theatre at Playhouse Square as a thank you to the community. The performances will include a co-commissioned work by DANCECleveland and the Cleveland Foundation and serve as part of the Cleveland Foundation's Creative Fusion: Cuba Project. Then, American Dance Festival comes to Cleveland for a fun-filled, week-long festival of dance with three performances including Pilobolus "Shadowland" in the State Theatre on August 29 to celebrate The National Dance Day, the hip-hop dancers of Raphael Xavier on August 2 in the Ohio Theatre and smart moves of Brian Brooks + Dancers August 5 also in the Ohio theatre at Playhouse Square. All performances during the festival begin at 7:30 pm and are preceded by engagement activities for audience members of all ages to enjoy before and after the show in collaboration with Playhouse Square and Cleveland State University's Department of Theatre and Dance.

The Connoisseur/Mainstage Series will begin October 1 at 3:00 pm at the University of Akron's E.J. Thomas Hall with the high energy; Koresh Dance Company awes audience with their talented dancers, followed by the classic modern dance favorite, Paul Taylor Dance Company November 11 at 7:30 pm in the Ohio Theatre at Playhouse Square. Winter will then bring the heat of Brazilian Grupo Corpo on January 20 at 7:30 pm and January 21 at 3:00 pm in the Ohio Theatre, followed by the Argentinian stomping cowboys, Che Malambo who will also be making their Ohio debut in the Ohio Theatre at Playhouse Square March 17th, 2018 at 7:30 pm.

Pam Young, Executive Director of DANCECleveland, has long wanted to find a platform for pushing the boundaries and broadening our understanding of what modern dance can be. She developed the idea of a summer dance festival format as the platform from which to launch this broader context which will precede the organization's more traditional season series.

"We have sought out dance practitioners who are stretching our notion of modern dance to share with our community. We are also working with new collaborators and placing performances into theatres that are not always available to us during the regular season. The opportunity to bring American Dance Festival to Cleveland will give our community the ability to see modern dance in many different forms in a short span of time as well as to expand our programming with a 4-day educational workshop with ADF faulty and in collaboration with CSU. We wanted to broaden our offerings this season to include dance companies and performances that are expanding the notions of modern dance. We have companies coming from Cuba, Brazil and Argentina as well as the United States and many are making their Ohio debuts with movement that is influenced by different cultures throughout the world."

DANCECleveland will kick off the season with two free performances of Malpaso from Cuba as part of the Cleveland Foundation's Creative Fusion/Cuba Project and a thank you to the community. After a sell-out performance at Playhouse Square in February of last year, DANCECleveland and the Cleveland Foundation were thrilled to co-commission a brand new piece choreographed by renowned choreographer, Azure Barton titled "Indomitable Waltz". The company will spend ten days in Cleveland as part of a residency at Cleveland State University where they will teach and rehearse new works. Based in Havana, Cuba, Malpaso brings Cuban contemporary dance into the 21st century by collaborating with top international choreographers while nurturing new voices in Cuban choreography. Founded in 2013 the youthful company's well-honed dancers perform with energy and passion that can be felt from the last seat in the theatre.

"Surely, Malpaso, with its fluid, sexy athleticism, can put the lie to the old saw that contemporary dance is too cerebral to be fun to watch."- Miami New Times

American Dance Festival (ADF) in Cleveland will offer a week-long celebration of dance performances, classes and events from July 29 August 5. After three years of planning, DANCECleveland is proud to partner with American Dance Festival, one of the oldest and most renowned dance festivals in the country to bring the festival to Cleveland. The community can enjoy dance demonstrations, dance movies and other events as well as attend three phenomenal dance performances, while advanced dancers ages 18 and up can sign up to be park of the workshop series taught by the ADF faculty. Partnering with Cleveland State University's Department of Theatre and Dance, as well as Playhouse Square, the festival will take place in the Playhouse Square District both indoors and out. The National Dance Day will launch the festival July 29th with a full day of dance offerings including a spectacular performance of Pilobolus.

Named after a sun-loving fungus that grows in barnyards, Pilobolus is renowned worldwide for its witty and gravity-defying works that challenge the notions of what modern dance can look like. Using the human body as a medium of expression, the company creates awe inducing shapes that push the imagination to the extreme. The National Dance Day July 29 will kick off with a creative performance of audience favorite, "Shadowland" which will take audience members on a dream-like adventure. Pilobolus collaborates with a diverse range of artists including the MIT Distributed Robotics Laboratory, Art Spiegelman, OK Go, Radiolab, and many others to make inventive, athletic, witty, collaborative performance works on stage and screen. They have performed in over 64 countries and received the Berlin Critic's Prize, a Primetime Emmy Award, the Samuel H. Scripps American Dance Festival Award for lifetime achievement in choreography, and a TED Fellowship for performing a TED Talk in 2005 among others. In recent years, Pilobolus has become an international entertainment brand with commercials (Mobil, Ford and Toyota); music videos (nominated for a 2012 Grammy Award); appearances on the 79th Annual Academy Awards, Oprah Winfrey Show and Conan O'Brien show and more!

"The performers of Pilobolus twist, turn, bend and flex. But the beauty in what they do is how their sometimes breathtaking actions create something bigger than movement"- ORLANDO SENTINEL

Challenging the range of what hip-hop dance can be, Raphael Xavier will continue ADF in Cleveland with a performance unlike any DANCECleveland has ever presented. An Award-winning artist originally from Wilmington, Delaware; Raphael Xavier is a Hip-Hop dancer and Breaking practitioner that has been honing his craft since 1983. A self-described "Innovative Movement Conceptualist", Xavier creates new ways to expand the vocabulary of the dance form and how it fits onto an aging body. He draws not only upon the culture but also his equally important visual background as a Hip Hop magazine photographer and musical artist. As the sound designer for his works, Xavier's understanding of movement and musicality allows him to structure beats, noises and sounds into captivating music that draws upon emotion and coincides with his choreography. As an active alumnus of the world-renown Hip Hop Dance Company, Rennie Harris Puremovement, his solo and ensemble choreographic dance works have been performed world-wide. Xavier has been awarded numerous accolades including a 2013 Pew Fellowship, a MacDowell Fellow in 2014 and most recently a 2016 Guggenheim Fellowship for Choreography.

"Artful and mesmerizing, Xavier transforms a bravado dance style into an introspective meditation." - Dance Magazine

Brian Brooks + Dancers will close the week-long dance festival in Cleveland with a performance full of the beauty and innovation of modern dance. Set to Max Richter's version of Vivaldi's "The Four Seasons," the company will perform an evening of mixed repertory, including "Torrent", a lush piece full of movement that sends the dancers soaring across the stage while playing with lines and texture as they perform. Choreographer Brian Brooks has been awarded with numerous awards and was recently appointed as the inaugural Choreographer in Residence at Chicago's Harris Theater for Music and Dance. This innovative three-year fellowship supports several commissions for Brooks each season with the first year featuring Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and Miami City Ballet, as well as his own New York-based group. The American Dance Institute is commissioned his recent production, Wilderness, with a NY premiere at The Kitchen in June 2016. Brooks' choreography was last seen in Cleveland as part of "Wendy Whelan Restless Creature" in 2015.

"The coiling fullness of Mr. Brooks's choreography, brimming with detail, frequently mesmerizes" Siobhan Burke, New York Times

Koresh Dance Company was founded in 1991 by Israeli-born choreographer and artistic director Ronen (Roni) Koresh. The Philadelphia based company is known for its engaging performances and superb dancers. The company performs critically acclaimed works and has been hailed internationally, touring to destinations including Spain, Turkey, Israel, South Korea, Mexico, and Guatemala. Over the years, Roni Koresh has developed a vast repertoire of work that ranges from explosive and passionate to intimate and restrained. The company also presents works by guest choreographers including Ohad Naharin, Robert Battle, Donald Byrd, Itzik Galili, and Paul Selwyn Norton among others. The driving energy and innovative movement of Koresh Dance Company will awe audience this fall as their technically gifted dancers exude the essence of Israeli inspired dance at its finest. This performance will be presented in collaboration with The University of Akron's Dance Program.

"Earthy, folk-dancey, emotionally direct, physically intense, and ostentatiously eccentric" The New Yorker

The classic modern dance favorite, Paul Taylor Dance Company returns to Cleveland to perform some of the company's most beloved favorites. Choreographer Paul Taylor is the last living member of the pantheon that created America's indigenous art of modern dance. At an age when most artists' best work is behind them, Mr. Taylor continues to win public and critical acclaim for the vibrancy, relevance and power of his creations. Paul Taylor's dances are renowned for their movement invention, athleticism, cultural commentary, and intricate musicality. Best known for his ability to capture musicality in motion, for many people it is impossible to hear certain orchestral works and not think of his dances. He has set works to an eclectic mix that includes scores from both classical and modern composers. This performance will be co-presented with Playhouse Square.

"Mr. Taylor proves himself the greatest choreographer alive." - New York Times

Brazil's Grupo Corpo heats things up with a winter performance of effortless movement and overflowing creativity. The highly sought after contemporary company was founded by Paulo Pederneiras in 1975, in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, and debuted its first work, Maria Maria, the very next year. Featuring original music by Milton Nascimento, a script by Fernando Brandt and choreography by the Argentine Oscar Araiz, the ballet would go on to spend six years on stage and tour fourteen countries. Since then, the company has intensified its international touring and created more than 2,300 pieces, as well as ten full ballets in its repertoire. Most recently they performed as part of the opening ceremony during the 2016 Summer Olympics exhibiting their unique fusion of movement styles. Giving more than 80 performances a year in places as distinctive as Iceland and South Korea, the United States and Lebanon, Canada, Italy, Singapore, the Netherlands, Israel, France, Japan and Mexico, Grupo Corpo has become one of the most desired companies in the world! After ten years of anticipation, DANCECleveland is thrilled to bring them to Cleveland for two stellar performances. This performance will be co-presented with Tri-C.

"Members of this astonishingly versatile Brazilian troupe are trained to pirouette as expertly as they can samba or shimmy, and the steps seem to pour out of their sleek, supple limbs with unstoppable force." Guardian

The powerhouse, all-male, Argentinian dance company, Che Malambo, excites audiences with their percussive dance and music spectacle. Since its premiere in Paris in 2007, Che Malambo has performed around the world awing audiences with their dynamic blend of precision footwork, rhythmic stomping, drumming and song. Paris-based Gilles Brinas first learned about Malambo while researching traditional dances. He soon fell under its spell and travelled to the Pampas region of Argentina to engage with the gaucho and further his exploration of their traditions. Inspired by the dance and the talent of its exponents, Brinas created Che Malambo so as to share this powerful, passionate form with international audiences. Capturing the spirit of the gaucho (South American cowboy) Brinas has choreographed a full evening work evoking agility, strength and dexterity, all characteristics that make up the heart of Che Malambo. The fast-paced footwork and whirling boleadoras will excite audiences and transport them into a world of rhythmic dance. This performance will be co-presented with Tri-C.

"Percussive sounds vibrated through the theater. Complex stimulating rhythms made on drums, by clapping hands and dynamic footwork were breathtaking"- Berkshire Eagle

SUBSCRIPTIONS: Season subscriptions packages, starting at $117, are on sale March 4, 2017 at Call 216-991-9000 or visit to purchase season tickets or request a brochure. Single tickets will go on sale May 11, 2017.

For more information on the dance companies, visit:

For more information on DANCECleveland's presenting partners, visit:


DANCECleveland, a Cleveland, Ohio based non-profit, is one of a handful of presenters in the nation that is dedicated solely to the presentation of modern and contemporary dance. The centerpiece of the organization's programming is its annual performance series. The performances are surrounded by an array of educational outreach events including artist-run master classes, residency programs, student matinees, pre-performance lectures and post-performance Q&A sessions, designed both to break artistic boundaries and provide community access to the dance aesthetic and dance luminaries that DANCECleveland brings to Northeast Ohio.

DANCECleveland is generously funded by Cuyahoga County residents through Cuyahoga Arts and Culture.

The Ohio Arts Council helped fund DANCECleveland with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans.



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