Limon Dance Company Opens Tomorrow At The Joyce
Now in its 73rd year, the Limón Dance Company continues to garner fresh interest for its performances of both new works and American classics. The May 29-June 2 season at The Joyce Theater will feature two Limón classics: The Moor's Pavane and Psalm, along with The Weather in the Room by company Artistic Director Colin Connor with guest artists Miki Orihara and Stephen Pier; and Radical Beasts in the Forest of Possibilities by guest choreographer Francesca Harper, with an original score composed and performed live by Nona Hendryx.
Limón's seminal work The Moor's Pavane, drawn from Shakespeare's Othello, is justly acclaimed as one of the greatest dance works of the twentieth century. A Mexican immigrant, it makes sense that that choreographer was drawn to this tale of a Moor, an immigrant who had risen to a place of respect, only to be undermined by his "friend" in his adopted world. Unfolding with elegance, gorgeous musicality, and a kaleidescopic use of the stage, this masterwork is still ahead of our time, a potent tragedy that speaks to today's racism and destructive power of rumor.
The Moor's Pavane has been in the repertories of major companies around the world, including American Ballet Theatre, Royal Danish Ballet, and the Paris Opera Ballet. The revered quartet was created in the form of a Pavane and other dances of the high Renaissance, and set to music by Henry Purcell. "Limón had a theatricality and a gift for stylistic invention. Just think of The Moor's Pavane and gasp," wrote Clive Barnes in Dance Magazine , 2007).
In 1965 Limón wrote that the artist's function was "to be the voice and conscience of his time."
This belief was fully realized in his towering Psalm, (1967), remounted and set to a new score by Jon Magnussen, commissioned by Carla Maxwell.
Psalm takes as its point of departure the premise that according to ancient Jewish belief, all the sorrows of the world rest upon 36 men. In translating this into dance, the 36 men have been reduced to one, a striking figure of pure nobility. With Carla Maxwell's charged arrangement of Psalm, the Company celebrates her 35 years as Artistic Director.
In Colin Connor's will witty The Weather in the Room, six dancers are the shifting weather of a mature couple's relationship. This intergenerational work is set to a cinematic score by Canadian composer Sarah Shugarman. The Company welcomes the powerful and mature guest artists Miki Orihara, longtime Martha Graham Dance Company soloist, and Stephen Pier, soloist with the Limon Dance Company, Hamburg Ballet, and the Royal Danish Ballet.
Francesca Harper created Radical Beasts in the Forest of Possibilities in collaboration with the iconic composer/performer Nona Hendryx and the dancers. Delving into our experience of living in a digital world, these radical beasts reach for real contact in a world where time is fractured and squeezed. Nona Hendryx's live performances help to bring that urgency and technology to our ears.
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