Urbanity Dance presents
June 3-4, 7:30pm, Boston University Tsai Performance Center
*By Erica Furgiuele
BOSTON, MA – Urbanity Dance, presents its annual spring revue on June 3-4, 7:30pm at Boston University’s Tsai Performance Center, 685 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston. Tickets are $30 general admission. Student tickets are $20. For tickets and information call Urbanity at (617) 572-3727 or buy online at www.urbanitydance.org/current-performances.
Voted Best of Boston 2015 and hailed as “a thrilling, whimsical, acrobatic beast” by Boston Magazine, Urbanity Dance returns to the stage for Residual, its culminating performance of the 2015-2016 season. The show is aptly named, presenting a collection of pieces that address the topic of aftermath. “We want to explore what’s left, physically and emotionally, in the wake of tragedy and hardship. How do our bodies tell that story, in terms of what we can and can’t see?” says Urbanity founder/director Betsi Graves.
Residual features both new works and returning repertoire, including a new piece by beloved Boston artist Marcus Schulkind, “Flashburn” by Andy Noble of NobleMotion Dance in Houston, and “HIT” by Carl Flink, founder and artistic director of the Minneapolis-based dance company Black Label Movement. Urbanity is excited to bring the work of these immensely talented and accomplished artists to the Boston stage.
Andy Noble is the co-artistic director/founder of NobleMotion Dance with his wife, Dionne. Andy’s performing career includes six years with Repertory Dance Theatre, where he performed in over forty choreographic works by such noted masters as Martha Graham, Merce Cunningham and Jose Limon. His piece “Flashburn” draws inspiration from images of concentration camps and Hiroshima after the atomic bomb. An original light installation by David J Deveau creates a haunting and stark world where the dancers respond to moments of chaos. It is beautifully disfigured as images of technology are juxtaposed by the eloquence of nature and snow falling.
Carl Flink is the Artistic Director of the Twin Cities-based Black Label Movement, as well as a former Limon company dancer. His dancemaking is recognized for its intense athleticism, daring risk-taking, and humanistic themes. Institutions that have presented/commissioned his choreography include the Bates Dance Festival, TED, TEDx Brussels, Theater Latte Da (Mpls, MN), the Chicago Humanities Festival, The Minnesota Orchestra, Company C Contemporary Ballet (San Francisco, CA) and Same Planet Different World (Chicago, IL). HIT translates cell dynamics into human movement–it was originally a collaboration between The Moving Cell Project at the University of Minnesota and Flink’s Black Label Movement company. Says Flink, “HIT challenges many assumptions of traditional concert dance, introducing athletic, physical impact as a source of vocabulary to explore dysfunction inside a tight-knit social group. It’s a grueling and visceral thrill-ride!”
Marcus Schulkind is a longtime collaborator with and friend of Urbanity. He has performed in the companies of Lar Lubovitch, Kathy Posin, Martha Graham, Pearl Lang, Norman Walker and Batsheva Dance Company of Israel. The Boston Globe described him as “a modern dance classicist whose choreography is terse, true, and beautifully crafted.”
Company dancer Alexander Davis will be presenting his new piece, “You Own Everything (Everything is Yours)” which premiered at Urbanity NEXT this past February. This modern dance derives imagery from Stonewall,Paris is Burning, Shakespeare, and the Bible to tell the story of a gay community left to negotiate a collective past in the midst of an individualized present.
Chantal Doucett’s piece, “The Escape”, reaches out to all audience members with its wide spectrum of musical choices ranging from Frank Sinatra to the famous DJ Diplo. The audience should be prepared for waves, raves, and vacation days as two dancers are taken on a whirlwind of adventures.
The evening performance will be coupled with afternoon showcases of the Urbanity Dance School, consisting of over 200 students ages three to adult. Urbanity prides itself on its extensive network of partnerships and education programs in the community, always working to forward its mission of inspiring, engaging and empowering people through the art of dance and movement.
“I believe these artists accurately capture and celebrate the Urbanity aesthetic,” says Graves. “Urbanity Dance is always pushing the creative envelope, which is exciting for our dancers and our audience. I think it’s going to be a memorable evening.”
Founded in 2008 by director Betsi Graves, Urbanity Dance offers audiences a challenging, entertaining, and visionary experience. The Company’s hyper-athletic aesthetic aims to bridge the gap between concert and commercial dance. Known for its effortless curves and use of breath, Urbanity places a strong emphasis on the foundations of modern, jazz, and ballet, while also utilizing the highly detailed gesture work and hard-hitting articulation usually associated with hip-hop. Urbanity has presented at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, The Alvin Ailey Citigroup Theater, The Institute of Contemporary Art, and venues across New England, New York, Virginia, Texas and Florida.
Buy tickets to Residual.
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PC: Celso Enrique