Special/Signature Issues » 2011 Fall Arts Preview

Get Your Kicks

The Richmond dance scene steps out with regional and international offerings.


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Brandi Coleman of the Jump Rhythm Jazz Project. - WILLIAM FREDERKING
  • William Frederking
  • Brandi Coleman of the Jump Rhythm Jazz Project.

Dance fans: Three is your lucky number this fall.

At least three major events per month during the next three months make for a dense and thrilling dance season, with a perfect balance of local and visiting artists. Miraculously, it's quite possible to see everything. So get out your calendars. You'll have to work a bit, but I have faith in you.

Did you hear how Chicago mayor — and former dancer — Rahm Emanuel wants his town to be the "heartbeat of dance" for the country? Chicago is home to many dance gems, among them the Joffrey Ballet, and throughout the season Richmond will get a glimpse at several. Hedwig Dances, highly regarded in their native city, will perform as the featured company in the 13th annual Yes, Virginia Dance showcase presented by K Dance on Sept. 17. Guest choreographer Andrea Miller (named as one of Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch" in 2009) created "Dust" in 2010, an intensely physical duet for two men.

K Dance's David Bridgewater and Kaye Weinstein Gary. - KENT EANES
  • Kent Eanes
  • K Dance's David Bridgewater and Kaye Weinstein Gary.

Also on the program of this beloved regional and national showcase is the Seldoms, another Chicago-based company, as well as Martha Connerton / Kinetic Works (North Carolina), ClancyWorks Dance Company (Maryland) and Richmond's own K Dance, among others.

September closes out with visits from some fabulous New York companies. VCU Dance presents the delicious Ballet Hispanico on Sept. 23 and 24, and Pilobolus will weave its usual acrobatic spell at the Modlin Center on Sept. 27 and 28.

Local favorite Starr Foster Dance Project will turn 10 this year, celebrating with a concert at the Grace Street Theater from Oct. 6-9. And in one of those wow-the-dance-world-is-so-small moments, Foster's show will be followed closely by New York modern dance powerhouse Doug Varone Company at the Modlin Center on Oct. 14. Foster danced in a Varone work in her student days at VCU when he came as a visiting artist.

The Latin Ballet of Virginia will revisit its much-loved "Macondo" Oct. 21-23. It's a vibrantly performed interpretation of Gabriel Garcia Marquez's magical realist epic, "One Hundred Years of Solitude." If you haven't made it out to Glen Allen in a while, go see the Latin Ballet — its passion for dance is infectious, and you'll want to catch it.

The first two weekends of November (3-5, 10-12) bring Richmond's Ground Zero Dance back to Dogtown Dance Theatre with new modern dance works by Pam England and guest artist Maria Bauman. In a slight overlap (remember your calendar!) Richmond Ballet stages George Balanchine's evening-length "Liebeslieder Walzer" to live vocal and piano accompaniment in its Studio Theater from Nov. 10-20.

After Thanksgiving, refresh yourself with another sampling from the Windy City. Jump Rhythm Jazz Project brings its unique and sprightly approach to dance theater to the Modlin Center on Nov. 29.

As for dance in December, I think you know what comes next: sugar ... plums. See you at the theater.


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