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Joffrey Ballet School Winter Concert to Feature 100 Dancers, 2 Debuts and 5 Restaged Works, 2/22-23

Joffrey Ballet School Winter Concert to Feature 100 Dancers, 2 Debuts and 5 Restaged Works, 2/22-23

Joffrey Ballet School, a world-renowned dance center offering the most versatile and highest quality training, will present a Winter Concert collaboration highlighting the schools' Jazz and Contemporary Trainees and the Joffrey Concert Group. The celebrated fusion of performers will take place February 22, 8:30 p.m. and February 23, 4:00 p.m. at the Salvatore Capezio Theater. The program will feature seven new and restaged works from legendary choreographers Jennifer Archibald, Donald Byrd, Daniel Gwirtzman, Brian McSween, Davis Robertson, Margo Sappington and Chet Walker.

"Joffrey Ballet School prepares students to dance for the most competitive ballet, modern and contemporary companies in the world," says Jazz and Contemporary Program Director Michael Blake. "The opportunity to learn from the finest instructors, such as the line up for this concert, showcases the passion and intensity of these dancers, and their desire to take their education and performance experiences to the next level."

Joffrey Ballet School's 2-night program will premiere two new works from Margo Sappington and Chet Walker. Sappington melds neo classical ballet and contemporary movement with an East Indian motif in Manusya-gati. Sappington is a freelance choreographer and master teacher in New York and began her career as a member of the Joffrey Ballet. Walker's The Wild Ones explores relationships and desire through the lens of Musical Theater and Jazz dance. Walker is the Artistic Director of WALKERDANCE in New Jersey.

Jennifer Archibald restages her 2013 work Grasp, which fuses classical, street, funk and lyrical style into a contemporary high-energy performance. A sought after choreographer and teacher, Archibald is the Artistic Director of Arch Dance Company. Donald Byrd's quintessential Drastic Cuts, first choreographed in 1992 and restaged by Stephanie G. Brown, was created at a time when financial hardship required Byrd to create a piece of practicality. Joffrey dancers will perform Act I. Byrd resides in Seattle, where he is the Artistic Director of Spectrum Dance Theater.

Joffrey dancers will perform excerpts from Daniel Gwirtzman's acclaimed hit-show Encore (2007) - a new section, Curtain, has been specifically tailored for Joffrey in this particular restaging of the work. A prominent choreographer, dancer and educator, Gwirtzman is the Artistic Director of Daniel Gwirtzman Dance Company in New York.

In One Last Breath Amongst A Cloud Of Witnesses, Brian McSween shares the life and legacy of his mother. The work played a fundamental role in McSween's healing process and the Concert Group was integral in the choreographic process. He is the Associate Director of the Joffrey Concert Group. Davis Robertson's Entropy (2002), originally choreographed for Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago, is a piece for ten dancers inspired by the relationship between chaos and order. Robertson is the Artistic Director of the Joffrey Concert Group.


Tickets are $30 general admission, $25 children and seniors, and can be purchased online at

Performance Schedule:

Saturday, February 22, 2014 - 8:30 p.m.

Sunday, February 23, 2014 - 4:00 p.m.

The Salvatore Capezio Theater is located at 126 East 13th Street, New York, NY 10003. The theater can be reached by subway on the 4, 5, 6, N, Q, R, and L trains at 14th Street, Union Square.


Manusya-gati | New York Premiere

Choreography: Margo Sappington
Music Composed by: R.D. Berman and Anoushka Shankar

Bollywood composers R. D. Berman and Anoushka Shankar blend classical Indian music with modern instruments and rhythms in this pure dance work. Manusya-gati, which means human realm, melds neo classical ballet and contemporary movement with an East Indian motif that complements the music.

The Wild Ones | New York Premiere

Choreography: Chet Walker
Music Composed by: No Pain For Cakes - Lounge Lizards, The Wild Ones - Leith Stevens

Inspired by the movie, The Wild Ones unleashes the exploration of thoughts and feelings stirred by jazz rhythms. A trio will dance the 2-act work.

Grasp excerpts (2013)

Choreography: Jennifer Archibald

Music Composed by: Taufiq Qureshi, Ilan Eshkeri, Zbigniew Preisner

Grasp examines the daily ritual of negotiations; paying special attention to how the body responds to the complexities of secrets and obsessions.

Drastic Cuts, Act I (1992)

Choreography: Donald Byrd

Music Composed by: Mio Morales

Staged by: Stephanie G. Brown

Simplicity and practicality allow the movement, physicality and presence of the dancer to take center stage in Byrd's 1992 Drastic Cuts.

Encore (2007)

Choreography: Daniel Gwirtzman
Music Composed by: Various jazz greats including The Dorsey Brothers, Count Basie, Chick Webb and Bix Beiderbecke.

Presenting a behind-the-scenes perspective, Encore gives audiences rare insight into a troupe of dancers preparing to go on the road under the pressure of a fastidious and demanding choreographer.

One Last Breath Amongst A Cloud Of Witnesses (2013)

Choreography: Brian McSween
Music Composed by: YoYo Ma, Allison Krauss, Sacred Harp Singers, Mark O'Connor, Edgar Meyer, Chris Thile

A tribute to McSween's mother,One Last Breath Amongst A Cloud Of Witnesses is a ballet about the relationships that shape a life and the recounting of a legacy.

Entropy (2002)

Choreography: Davis Robertson
Music Composed by: Astor Piazolla and Dhol Foundation

Entropy engages the audience in a raucous journey through equations of motion and artistry.

Founded in 1953 by Robert Joffrey and Gerald Arpino, Joffrey Ballet School maintains the vision of its founders to transform passionate dance students into versatile, individualistic artists able to collaborate and evolve fluidly in a fast-changing society. With an accredited dance program that offers two core pieces of study - ballet and jazz/contemporary - Joffrey is known for its diverse curriculum as well as being the largest summer intensive training program in the country. As Joffrey celebrates its 60th anniversary, it remains at the forefront of American dance education, instilling a passion for dance in children, youth, adults, pre-professionals and professionals. Graduates of the School have gone on to dance for major classical ballet, modern and contemporary companies, both in the United States and abroad.

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