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Joffrey Concert Group to Premiere Three New Works with Five Choreographers at New York Live Arts, 5/19-20

Joffrey Concert Group to Premiere Three New Works with Five Choreographers at New York Live Arts, 5/19-20

Joffrey Concert Group, a pre-professional performance company that prepares dancers for the world stage, will present two evenings of work at New York Live Arts, May 19-20. The troupe of 30 dancers will perform two signature works by Gerald Arpino-Kettentanz (1971), a neoclassical tour de force inspired by Old Vienna, and Light Rain (1981) a sensual evocation of the zeitgeist of the 1970's, performed in full for the first time in New York City since the Joffrey Ballet presented it twenty years ago. In addition, the program features two world premieres by Shawn Hounsell (formerly Royal Winnipeg) and Africa Guzman (former Associate Director of Compania Nacional de Danza under Nacho Duato), with a New York Premiere by Scott Rink (Lar Lubovitch Dance Company).

The Joffrey Concert Group is dedicated to the legacy of Robert Joffrey and Gerald Arpino, and will pay tribute to Francesca Corkle on Monday, May 19. Corkle, who danced with the Joffrey Ballet for nearly a decade from 1969 to 1978, has spent the past 30 years teaching at the Joffrey Ballet School. Her significant impact on the lives of the students and her initiative to maintain the highest artistic integrity within the school is unparalleled.

"The resurrection of Light Rain after 20 years, will provide the dancers with such a wonderful growing experience," says Davis Robertson, Artistic Director of the concert group. "Graduates of the Joffrey Concert Group have gone on to join major dance companies around the world, thanks to the professional preparation they receive here. A constantly immersive environment, the dancers are asked to master a vast and versatile repertoire which is represented here in this Spring Concert program and continues all year round."

Commissioned by Joffrey Concert Group, Shawn Hounsell's East 10th follows the vein of one individual within a detailed urbanscape in this world premiere work. Africa Guzman has returned to expand Barroco, a sweeping and dynamic work originally choreographed for the concert group in 2011, with additional movements. Dorothy Parker's short story Here We Are comes to life through Scott Rink's piece, which stages a duet, accompanied by the spoken text read and recited by two additional dancers from the company. In addition to Gerald Arpino's two works Light Rain and Kettentanz, the program will also highlight Artistic Director Davis Robertson's Entropy, which engages the audience in a journey through equations of chaotic motion in the universe.

Tickets are $25 general admission and $20 for students and seniors and can be purchased through New York Live Arts at http://www.newyorklivearts.org/event/joffrey_ballet_concert.

Performances are Monday, May 19, 2014 and Tuesday, May 20, 2014 at 7:30pm.

New York Live Arts is located at 219 West 19th Street (between 7th and 8th Avenues) New York, NY 10011 and can be reached by subway: 1,2, 3, F, M, L and A/C/E.

Full repertory details follow:

Light Rain (1981)
Choreography: Gerald Arpino
Music: Douglas Adamz & Ross Gauthier
Staged by Nicole Duffy

A signature work for the Joffrey Ballet, Light Rain with its accent on youth, its American artists, and its original music, continues the Joffrey traditions begun in 1956. Arpino was inspired by the dancers modes and rituals, their passions, when developing this ballet.

East 10th (World Premiere)
Choreography: Shawn Hounsell
Music: Leonard Bernstein

East 10th explores the constant flow of individuals coming and going in NYC and the relationships that are constructed in passing through. The work is rooted in both classical and contemporary movement.

Barroco (World Premiere)
Choreography: Africa Guzman
Music: Vivaldi

Drawing from her neoclassical background, Guzman sets eye-catching movement to Vivaldi's playful and exuberant score. The work features several sections including a trio, duets and a male solo.

Here We Are (New York Premiere)
Choreography: Scott Rink
Script: Dorothy Parker

This modern and humorous work features contemporary movement molded beautifully to the text of Dorothy Parker's short story. The piece explores the complexity of a new marriage while referring to individuals who have a mature understanding of marriage and its complexity.

Kettentanz (1971)
Choreography: Gerald Arpino
Music: Johan Stauss
Staged by Nicole Duffy

Kettentanz is a classic salute to Old Vienna balls and weingartens and is one of the most beloved works of the Joffrey repertory.

Entropy (2002)
Choreography: Davis Robertson
Music: Dhol Foundation

Entropy reflects the complexity and beauty of the universe-particularly the molecular dance that exists within absolute chaos and the attempt to gain absolute independence. Dancers act as molecules bouncing, interacting and becoming intertwined.

The Joffrey Concert Group is a pre-professional performance company that gives talented dance students the unique opportunity to acquire performing experience and prepares them for successful careers in dance. Created by Robert Joffrey in 1981 as a performing outlet for the students of the Joffrey Ballet School, the Joffrey Concert Group performs a diverse range of works, from 19th-century classical works to Gerald Arpino's late 20th century contemporary ballets, as well as works by today's leading contemporary choreographers. The group is comprised of 25 dancers and performs several times a year at important venues in New York City, across the US and abroad.

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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