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Philadanco

ENTERTAINMENT
November 8, 2011 | By Ellen Dunkel, For The Inquirer
In a perfect world, all dance would be performed to live music. In reality, it is a luxury few companies can afford. That's why it was a joy to see Philadanco dance Watching Go By, the Day when it opened a four-performance series called "For Your Pleasure" Friday night at the Kimmel Center's Perelman Theater. Choreographed by company alumna Hope Boykin, the piece featured 10 dancers plus the Ali Jackson Quintet, which played live on stage.   Watching Go By , a Philadelphia premiere, is set to an original score by Jackson, and has the dancers reacting to and riffing with the musicians.
NEWS
September 11, 2011
'I love dance as an art form," says current Chicago mayor, former White House chief of staff, and onetime dance student Rahm Emanuel, a Chicago native who wants his city to be known for its moves. Like Philadelphia, it is a first-rate dance town, and, with Philadelphia, it is recognized by national dance media as one of the top five in the country. But it doesn't eclipse Philadelphia. Four well-established, critically acclaimed resident companies - the Pennsylvania Ballet, Philadanco, BalletX, and Koresh Dance Company - bring choreographic cachet to the Avenue of the Arts.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 10, 2011 | By Merilyn Jackson, For The Inquirer
The Earth goddess of Philadelphia dance, Joan Myers Brown, hurled a thunderbolt of a program at the near-capacity audience in the Kimmel's Perelman Theater Friday evening - but instead of running for cover, the crowd erupted in cheers as each of the four works ended. It started with a vigorous sun shower, a reprise of Milton Myers' Violin Concerto to the Philip Glass work of that name. Myers has been resident choreographer for Philadanco since 1986; this is one of my favorite pieces by him. Clad in variations of purple, 10 dancers race in diagonals across the stage to Glass' pulse and, in a second section, stop the action with bodybuilding poses.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 9, 2010
THE FILM "Black Swan" with Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis, which opens in Philadelphia tomorrow, has come under fire because of the dramatic 20 pounds lost by each of the already-thin performers so they could portray ballerinas. With eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia and binge eating on the rise, this movie concerns Susan Kleinman, the dance-movement therapist at Philadelphia-headquartered Renfrew Center. "Our culture promotes eating disorders, and some experts estimate the increase has gone up as much as 117 percent," said Kleinman.
NEWS
May 9, 2010 | By Stephan Salisbury INQUIRER CULTURE WRITER
In 1960, back before the civil rights movement turned north, back when African Americans found themselves unwelcome in many of the city's signature organizations, Joan Myers Brown started a dance school for children, way out on Market Street. No one in the big downtown arts groups seemed to notice. Why should they? Black children were excluded from white dance schools, and no black dancers graced the stages of mainstream dance companies here or most anywhere else in the country.
NEWS
May 9, 2010 | By Stephan Salisbury, Inquirer Culture Writer
In 1960, back before the civil rights movement turned north, back when African Americans found themselves unwelcome in many of the city's signature organizations, Joan Myers Brown started a dance school for children, way out on Market Street. No one in the big downtown arts groups seemed to notice. Why should they? Black children were excluded from white dance schools, and no black dancers graced the stages of mainstream dance companies here or most anywhere else in the country. In 1970, Brown founded the Philadelphia Dance Company, known universally as Philadanco, to give her students a shot at professional performance and to make a visible African American presence in the world of classic and modern dance.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 17, 2010 | By Stephan Salisbury INQUIRER CULTURE WRITER
Joan Myers Brown, whose determination to open up the world of dance to the creative energies of African Americans led her to found a groundbreaking dance school and performing ensemble here, has been named the 89th winner of the Philadelphia Award. The award, announced Friday night at a gala performance celebrating the 40th anniversary of Brown's renowned dance company, Philadanco, at the Kimmel Center, will be presented at an award ceremony there May 10. In addition to founding Philadanco in 1970, Brown founded the Philadelphia School of Dance Arts in 1960.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 17, 2010 | By Merilyn Jackson FOR THE INQUIRER
We often speak of Philadelphia treasures, and Joan Myers Brown has been one of the city's most valuable assets for the last 40 years. Forty years! As founder and artistic director of Philadanco - the Philadelphia Dance Company - her reach here and around the world has won her fond acclaim, including this year's Philadelphia Award. Thursday's 40th-anniversary opening performance at the Kimmel Center's Perelman Theater portended nothing but more smooth sailing for this helmswoman and her brilliant company.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 15, 2010 | By Merilyn Jackson FOR THE INQUIRER
Although deep into work with the Philadelphia Dance Company and her own dance school, Joan Myers Brown saw a problem that she could not ignore. Back then, in 1988, Brown also served on the board of Dance/USA (a national service organization based in Washington, D.C.). She noticed that such dance organizations were not interested in audiences of color, and they really did not want modern dance, preferring to focus on major ballet companies. "I knew there were problems that black companies were having and thought we might address them collectively," said Brown, the artistic and executive director of Philadanco in West Philadelphia.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 12, 2010 | By SHAUN BRADY For the Daily News
"WHENEVER I have an anniversary it seems like I get crazy," laughed Joan Myers Brown over the phone last week from her studio in West Philadelphia. She expected to be working into the wee hours of the morning - and not for the only time that week - to prepare for the horde of dancers, teachers and students expected to stream into town for this week's International Association of Blacks in Dance Conference. Philadanco, the predominantly African-American dance company that Brown founded in 1970, will celebrate its 40th anniversary this year, culminating in a series of performances at the Kimmel Center in April.
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