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Compagnie Kafig to Perform at Westbrook Performing Arts Center, 2/11

Compagnie Kafig to Perform at Westbrook Performing Arts Center, 2/11

Street hip-hop, martial arts and contemporary dance collide when Portland Ovations presents France's electrifying Compagnie Käfig at the Westbrook Performing Arts Center on Tuesday, February 11th at 7:30pm.

Since their U.S. debut in 2002, this innovative French hip-hop ensemble, directed by choreographer Mourad Merzouki, has become an international phenomenon, selling out performances worldwide. Merzouki, who is at the forefront of the international hip-hop dance scene and who trained in circus skills and martial arts, leads 11 male street dancers from Brazil's favelas in two thrilling dances that highlight the young Brazilians' astonishing acrobatic skills and dazzling virtuosity. One piece, Correria plunges the audience into a frantic, hectic race just like the one that governs our daily lives. The other, Agwa is all about water-the most vital component of the human body, a precious natural resource to be preserved, and a symbol of renewal. The company's thrilling combination of hip-hop, capoeira, samba, electronic music and bossa nova creates an evening bursting with fun, sensuality and vitality - a joyous celebration of life and dance. The Boston Globe states, "These dancers not only do away with the fourth wall, but they seem to melt the proscenium's frame while they're at it."

From 3:30pm to 5:30pm on Monday, February 10th at Portland Arts and Technology School (PATHS) members of Compagnie Käfig will lead an Intermediate Dance Masterclass focusing on contemporary hip-hop mixed with Capoeira and freestyle forms. Registration is required and costs $25 per student. To register: call 207.773.3150 or email offstage@portlandovations.org.

On the night of the performance at 6:30pm a pre-performance lecture, Portland Hip-Hop Here & Now takes place at Westbrook Performing Arts Center. Join Portland Ovations for a conversation about Hip Hop culture, its origins and its current state as well as its presence in Maine. Tim Clorius and Andrew Coffin, joined by some of Portland's established artists of the movement, will talk about their passion and ambitions concerning their involvement with Hip Hop. They will discuss how they thread their Hip Hop lifestyle with art, design, DJing, spoken word and community activism in their personal lives as well as in their careers.

Tickets for Compagnie Käfig are $25 to $33 for Ovations' Members, $28 to $36 for the general public and a limited amount of $15 student tickets are also available. The National Endowment for the Arts supports the performance by Compagnie Käfig. To purchase tickets visit www.portlandovations.org, contact PortTIX at 207-842-0800 or stop by the box office window at Merrill Auditorium.

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by Barnett Serchuk