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Jessica Lang Dance Makes Houston Debut, 9/20

Jessica Lang Dance Makes Houston Debut, 9/20

The Houston debut of Jessica Lang Dance will kick off Society for the Performing Arts' 2013-2014 season on Friday, Sept. 20, 2013, at 8 p.m. in Wortham Center's Cullen Theater.

Having created more than 80 works for ballet and modern companies over the last 13 years, choreographer Jessica Lang's own contemporary ballet company comes to Houston for the first time with a diverse program showcasing Lang's acclaimed talent for seamlessly incorporating striking design elements with her emotionally engaging work.

For its Houston performance, Jessica Lang Dance will perform Lines Cubed, featuring nine dancers using molo softblocks to form lines reflective of a Mondrian color-block painting; Mendelssohn/Incomplete, a graceful work set to the music of Felix Mendelssohn; Among the Stars, a duet portraying the origins of the Japanese Star Festival, Tanabata; The Calling, showcases a solo dancer in a 20-foot-long white skirt performing to choral music by the all-female Trio Mediaeval; White, a dance on film that captures and layers dancer in real time and slow motion; and i.n.k., a piece where dancers on stage interact with video projections created by visual artist Shinichi Maruyama.

A dance veteran and Juilliard graduate, Lang is considered one of America's most sought-after choreographers. She performed as a dancer with Twyla Tharp's company, THARP!, and has created works on companies including Birmingham Royal Ballet, The Joffrey Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, Cincinnati Ballet, Colorado Ballet, Ballet San Jose, Richmond Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, Ailey II, ABT II, Hubbard Street 2 and New York City Ballet's Choreographic Institute, among others. American Ballet Theatre presented her work Splendid Isolation III at the Metropolitan Opera House in 2008 and in 2011 her ballet Lyric Pieces, commissioned and performed by Birmingham Royal Ballet, earned a nomination for a coveted 2013 Manchester Theatre Award in the UK. Lang has received commissions from the Dallas Museum of Art and the Guggenheim Museum for its Works and Process series. Most recently, Lang directed and choreographed Pergolesi's Stabat Mater for the Glimmerglass Opera Festival during the summer of 2013.

Based in New York City, Jessica Lang Dance was founded in 2011, marked by Lang's receipt of a Joyce Theater Residency supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Jessica Lang Dance made its full company debut at Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival's 80th Anniversary Season in July 2012. The Company has garnered significant attention and acclaim from performances at major venues throughout the country. In 2014, the Company will premiere a new work by Lang commissioned by the Kennedy Center and accompanied live by the National Symphony Orchestra.

Part of SPA's Tudor Family Great American Dance Series, this performance is generously sponsored by United Airlines, H-E-B, BMC Software and Reliant Energy

Tickets range from $23-$73 and can be purchased online at www.spahouston.org, by phone at 713-227-4SPA or at the courtyard level ticket office at Jones Hall located at 615 Louisiana St. Hours of operation: 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. Monday - Friday,10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday. For groups of 15 or more call 713-632-8113.

Special Ticket Package - Season Kickoff

SPA is offering a special package for Jessica Lang Dance that includes one orchestra level seat for the performance and access to the post-performance cast party at the Sam Houston Hotel. The price is $60 and may be purchased online atspahouston.org or by calling 713-227-4772.

Beyond the Spotlight

· Ballet Workout @ Houstonian Lite

4:30-5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 19.

Pennzoil Place, South Tower, 711 Louisiana St, Houston, TX 77002

COST: $5 for Houstonian Lite members; $10 for non-members

A company member will lead a ballet-based workout for women and men at Houstonian Lite, one of downtown Houston's premier gyms. R.S.V.P. by calling Jessica Capistran at 713-632-8112.

· The Art of Teaching Choreography @ The Movement Lab

4:30-6 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 19

3333 Fannin, Suite 100, Houston, TX 77004

COST: $20 if registered by Sept. 16; $25 after Sept. 16

Jessica Lang will lead a Professional Development workshop for dance educators, sharing her experience with Make Dance at the American Ballet Theatre, which offered students an opportunity to design, choreograph, construct, produce and perform their own original dance in response to violence and gun control issues. Teachers will gain insight into the Jessica Lang Dance creative process and inspiration for developing original choreography in their own studios and classrooms. To register, visit the Education page at spahouston.org.

Founded in 1966, Society for the Performing Arts (SPA) is the largest independent non-profit presenting organization in the Southwest. Since its inception, SPA has sponsored more than 1,000 performances of the world's finest music, dance and theater events, in adherence to the belief that the arts are fundamental to the overall enrichment and quality of life within the community. In addition to presenting artists, SPA seeks to provide a variety of learning experiences for adults and children through master classes, lectures and special student performances, as well as build relationships between the performing arts and other interests within the greater Houston area and throughout the state of Texas.

high res photos

Jessica Lang Dance Makes Houston Debut, 9/20
The Calling. Photo Credit: Takao Komaru

Jessica Lang Dance Makes Houston Debut, 9/20
i.n.k. Photo Credit: Todd Burnsed

Jessica Lang Dance Makes Houston Debut, 9/20
Among the Stars. Photo Credit: Todd Burnsed

high res photos

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