BWW Reviews: Verb Ballet's EXPLORE DISCOVER Echoes Its Name

Related: Verb Ballets, Antonio Brown, Tom Evert, Brian Murphy

This season Verb Ballets, Cleveland’s largest contemporary dance company, is mainly featuring a single choreographer at each program.  This concept continues The company’s goal of supporting and fostering emerging talent.  Programs will highlight the works of Antonio Brown, Chung-Fu Chang and Richard Dickinson.

It is appropriate that the first evening of EXPLORE DISCOVER showcases the work of local dancer and choreographer, Antonio Brown.

Brown, who is a member of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, was born and raised in Cleveland.  He began his dance training at the Cleveland School for the Arts under the guidance of Bill Wade (Inlet Dance).  He went on to study at the Julliard School, and has performed with a number of noted dance companies.  Besides performing, he developed an interest in choreography, and staged works for such organizations as Verb Ballets, August Wilson Center Dance Ensemble, and The Julliard Dance Ensemble.  

Brown, who is noted for his dynamic personality as well as his non-stop energy, displays these traits in his dance concepts.  

The Verb program opened with CONTINUUM (2011), performed to a remix assembled by Brown, which represented his youthful and free form style and featured a dervish of balletic, rolling, running, sliding, arms flailing, free form lifts, and movements.  Though a little long, it was engrossing.  Trad Burns’ lighting and Janet Bolick’s blue and maroon costumes helped create the right moods.  

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Roy Berko Roy Berko, a life-long Clevelander, holds degrees, through the doctorate from Kent State, University of Michigan and The Pennsylvania State University. Roy was an actor for many years, appearing in more than 16 plays, 8 TV commercials, and 3 films. He has directed more than 30 productions. A member of the American Critics Association, the Dance Critics Association and The Cleveland Critics Circle, he has been an entertainment reviewer for more than twenty years.

For many years he was a regular on Channel 5, ABC-Cleveland's "Morning Exchange" and "Live on 5," serving as the stations communication consultant. He has also appeared on "Good Morning America." Roy served as the Director of Public Relations for the Volunteer Office in the White House during the first Clinton Administration.

He is a professor of communication and psychology who taught at George Washington University, University of Maryland, Notre Dame College of Ohio and Towson University. Roy is the author of 31 books. Several years ago, he was selected by Cleveland Magazine as one of the most interesting people in Cleveland.

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