Autumn doesn’t just bring crisp air and pumpkin spice, it kicks off the 2017-2018 dance performance season. And there is much to be excited about!
I had the opportunity to speak with Mila Carr, the founder of Bailes do Monde. BDM (whose name means dances of the world) is a new group in Hampton Roads whose focus is to bring international dance companies and dance masters to this area for low to no cost performances and workshops.
By doing so, the companies will not only share dance, they will also “enrich the community by showing other cultures using dance as a vehicle,” Mila said.
The inaugural BDM event is taking place at the Chrysler Museum on Saturday, September 23rd. The dance company to be featured is All Stars, a Cuban Salsa company from Santiago de Cuba. All Stars, who began at the Universidad de Oriente in 2004, incorporate elements of Cuban traditional dances and ballroom dances. The company quickly gained recognition throughout Cuba, and has since participated in cultural exchanges with dance groups from many countries including the US, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands and more. The National Council of Casas d la Cultura awarded All Stars their highest distinction, by giving them the status of a National Dance Company in 2013.
This free event will take place from 1-3pm, and begins with a 30 minute lecture introduction to the company and style of dance. Next on the program is a performance by the All Stars dancers, followed by a dance workshop for dancers of all ages and levels.
Mila hopes these events will also “help connect with the international community that is already here.” BDM wishes to celebrate the art of dance and celebrate diverse cultures and styles.
“Art makes the city,” she said. And I wholeheartedly agree.
The Mambo Room is celebrating their 10th Anniversary with a weekend full of dance. Friday September 29th is the celebration’s pre-party from 9pm-1am which includes a basic dance lesson (Salsa, Bachata, and Kizomba) and dance social. All day Saturday (the 30th) the studios will be packed with lessons in Afro-Cuban, Bachata, Rueda, Kizomba, and turn patterns. Saturday night the party continues from 8:30pm to 2am with a Salsa/Bachata lesson, performances, and social dancing. The Mambo Room will also be hosting a VIP dinner with guest artists Frankie Martinez and Darlin Garcia on Saturday from 5-8pm.
The Sandler Center will be showcasing the Russian Grand Ballet’s performance of the full length ballet, Swan Lake, on Friday, October 6th at 7:30pm. Since 2005, the company has been performing classics around the world, and has now grown to a company of over 50 dancers. This event will be part of the Russian Grand Ballet’s third North American tour.
The Festival of South African Dance brings to the American Theatre Gumboots – Stimela the Musical on Saturday, October 14th. Gumboots had its beginnings as a form of communication in gold mines and grew into a rhythmic dance form that is now performed around the world. The musical shares the story of South African men on a quest to Johannesburg. The show begins at 8pm.
The American Theatre will also be presenting the local dance group, The Riddick Dance Company in their performance of The King Project. Choreographed by David Riddick and Marshall Sweeney, this piece intertwines speeches and letters of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with movement. The performance will be held on Friday, October 20th at 8pm.
Richmond Ballet is bringing their Trio event to the Ferguson Center for the Arts on Thursday, October 26th. This performance will present three works, Gloria, Silence, and Journey, which encompass a range of energies and flavors. The show begins at 7:30pm.
So You Think You Can Dance brings the talent from the TV to the stage on Sunday, October 22nd. The top ten finalists from season 14 will perform choreography highlighted on the show as well as new works in this multi-city tour. The performance will be held at Chrysler Hall at 7:30pm.
“There is a need to find and sing our own song, to stretch our limbs and shake them in a dance so wild that nothing can roost there, that stirs the yearning for solitary voyage.”
– Barbara Lazear Ascher
If you have any dance news or information on upcoming dance events or classes, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.