January 12, 2014 |
Anna Drozdowski's dance-centered Thirdbird and Dustin Hurt's music-centered Bowerbird have been bringing innovative and often startlingly brilliant artists to Philadelphia for several years. One of those presenting organizations' most successful collaborations included dancer/performance artist Eleanor Bauer two years ago. Her "Big Girls Do Big Things" was so smart and engaging, I reacted with great excitement when I heard she was returning. On Thursday night at Christ Church Neighborhood House, she opened a short run - which by the time you read this will mercifully be over.
December 27, 2013 |
JASON GARRETT'S bio doesn't say if the Dallas Cowboys' coach was on the debate team at Princeton, but Garrett certainly held his rhetorical ground yesterday during a conference call with Philadelphia-area reporters, their ranks bolstered by a couple of national media folk who happened to be at NovaCare for the buildup to Sunday evening's battle for the NFC East title. Garrett first trotted out what he has been saying all week: That quarterback Tony Romo is day-to-day with a back injury, that Kyle Orton has been leading the Cowboys through practice.
December 15, 2013 |
The 15-year-old dance company BodyVox first appeared at Annenberg Center in 2001. This is the group's fifth visit as one of the Dance Celebration series' favorites - and one of mine, as well. BodyVox, based in Portland, Ore., is a winsome company of a dozen top-tier dancers. Artistic directors Jamey Hampton and Ashley Roland, both of whom dance in the company, are alums of Momix and Pilobolus. That heritage shows best in certain sections of their eight-part paean to films and filmmaking, The Cutting Room , which the two conceived and choreographed.
December 4, 2013 |
WHEN a scantily clad woman performs on a pole, you don't expect onlookers to get all emotional. You expect leers. Cheers. Even jeers. But tears? Not so much. Still, peepers moistened more than once on a recent Saturday in Manayunk, when a few dozen students at Awakenings Pole Fitness pulled off backbends, arabesques and other positively poetic dance moves - all while clinging to shiny brass posts. In the evening's first solo, a Rubenesque blonde lovingly dedicated her elegant aerial postures to her boyfriend, who sat in the front row. Later that night, advanced students from Awakening's King of Prussia studio swung around, upside down, to A Perfect Circle's deep, dark version of John Lennon's "Imagine.
December 3, 2013 |
Jabriel is an outgoing and friendly 12-year-old. He is actively involved in his church and is part of its youth ministry. A natural performer, he has a beautiful voice and also has great dance moves. He recently participated in a school play; he was a member of the Temptations. The show was a big hit, and Jabriel was one of the main performers. Enrolled in the sixth grade, Jabriel does well in school. He is very conscientious and works hard to please his teachers. He enjoys receiving praise for his efforts and likes to earn rewards for his academic achievements.
November 22, 2013 |
THE PEEP show must go on. After losing in front of a board of its own appointees, Mayor Nutter's administration is taking its case for the so-called lap-dance tax to Common Pleas Court. Earlier this year, the city audited and levied retroactive taxes on three Philly strip clubs for not charging the amusement tax - 5 percent on the price of admission - to the cost of lap dances. The clubs appealed to the Tax Review Board, which in October ruled unanimously against the city.
November 9, 2013 |
Dancers, drummers, and workshops take center stage this weekend as the Community Education Center, in partnership with Drexel University, continues its DanceAfrica Philadelphia festival. All activities will take place at the university's Main Building. At 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday in the auditorium, a DanceAfrica concert will be hosted by artistic director and founding elder, Charles "Baba Chuck" Davis. The concert will feature performances by Philadelphia troupes Kùlú Mèlé African Dance & Drum Ensemble; Kariamu & Co.: Traditions; and Illstyle & Peace Productions, and a guest percussion dance performance by troupe Farafina Kan from Washington.
November 9, 2013 |
Mary Metrione can't remember the names of all the ornamental grasses in her Haddonfield garden, but her affection for them makes an unforgettable impression: "I like their lines. They're taller than most plants that I have, and I just love it when the wind blows - they're all bent over - and I like the ethereal ones that are real fluffy. I like the ones that are heavy with seeds, too. Then they bend differently. I just think they give shape and form and a lot of motion to the garden.
October 25, 2013 |
After 60 years as one of America's most beloved dance makers, 83-year-old Paul Taylor could rest on his laurels. But he won't. Like his late peer Merce Cunningham and onetime mentor Martha Graham, Taylor has carved his own path in the genre and, as they did, continues creating new work well beyond the point at which many artists retire. In the 1950s and '60s, as others pioneered pure dance, abstract, or conceptual works, Taylor continued to choreograph work that was, and is, delighted to tackle narrative, emotion, humor, and sheer beauty.
October 18, 2013 |
What a strange time the 1930s must have been. The world was hurtling toward a cataclysm of unimaginable proportions, yet there was a stunning flowering of the arts, of hope and of new ideas in the West as painters and philosophers, poets, and musicians congregated in New York and London, in Paris and Berlin. That's the world so vividly captured by the brilliant British playwright and screenwriter Stephen Poliakoff ( The Lost Prince ) in Dancing on the Edge , a grand ensemble drama with a stunning cast that includes Chiwetel Ejiofor, Janet Montgomery, Jacqueline Bisset, Anthony Head, John Goodman, Matthew Goode, and Angel Coulby.