Martha Graham Dance Company Announces Spring 2020 Season At New York City Center
The world-renowned Martha Graham Dance Company presents the second season of The EVE Project-a program celebrating female empowerment and the centennial of the 19th Amendment this year. The New York City Center season features acclaimed classics from Graham's repertory alongside works by some of today's top choreographers, including a world premiere by Andrea Miller and recent commissions from Pam Tanowitz and Maxine Doyle and Bobbi Jene Smith. Prima ballerina Diana Vishneva will be a guest star at the gala evening dancing Graham's Deep Song. Music for all of the Graham classics will be played live by The Mannes Orchestra. Performances are Wednesday, April 22 at 7pm (Opening Night Gala), Thursday-Friday, April 23-24 at 8pm, Saturday, April 25 at 2pm and 8pm, and Sunday, April 26 at 2pm.
"We created The EVE Project to celebrate the hundredth anniversary of women's right to vote," said Artistic Director Janet Eilber. "We wanted to highlight the radical female characters Martha Graham created for the stage and put them in conversation with new works by some of today's top choreographers-who happen to be women. The combination is a multifaceted, multigenerational conversation that evokes and celebrates the complexity of female power."
The Company's Opening Night Gala benefit performance at New York City Center and party at The Metropolitan Club, hosted by esteemed journalist Alina Cho, honors five fearless women for their dedication and leadership around women's issues and beyond. Honorees include Letty Cottin Pogrebin (author and activist, and founding editor of Ms. Magazine), Jane Edison Stevenson (Vice Chair, Korn Ferry), Jackie Michele-Martinez (activist and member of the FDNY), Tracy Richelle High (Partner, S&C Litigation Group), and Laurie Mahon (Vice Chair, CBC Investment Banking).
The special gala program will feature a world premiere for eight dancers by in-demand choreographer Andrea Miller, known for her boldly inventive and visceral work. Martha's Women, a montage of signature Graham solos, will be performed by the women in the company with special appearances by PeiJu Chien-Pott as Medea and international ballet star Diana Vishneva in Deep Song. An excerpt from choreographer Troy Schumacher and composer Augusta Read Thomas's The Auditions, which premiered at PEAK Performances this past fall, rounds out the program.
The multi-program season features a revival of Martha Graham's 1963 work Circe, a bewitching riff on the Odysseus myth set to music by Alan Hovhaness that has not been seen in more than more than 15 years. The season also includes Graham's wry Every Soul Is a Circus (1939), with music by Paul Nordoff, and her stark anti-war masterwork Chronicle from 1936, set to music by Wallingford Riegger. Graham's celebrated masterpiece Appalachian Spring (1944), with a score by Aaron Copland and a spare set by Isamu Noguchi, will be presented along with her stirring Night Journey (1947), a retelling of the Oedipus myth from his mother Jocasta's point of view, featuring music by William Schuman and Noguchi's iconic glyph-like set pieces.
Last season's critically acclaimed premieres: Untitled (Souvenir) by Pam Tanowitz and Deo by Maxine Doyle and Bobbi Jene Smith will also be presented. Set to two string quartets by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Caroline Shaw, Untitled (Souvenir) merges Tanowitz's inventive movement with steps and phases from Graham's Dark Meadow and The Legend of Judith, transforming the iconic material into something new. Deo, inspired by the myth of Demeter and Persephone, explores the natural human preoccupation with death and the underworld and the role that women play in our understanding of mortality. It features an original score by experimental electronic musician Lesley Flanigan.
Graham's 1935 work Panorama, created as a rallying cry for social activism, will be performed by teens from across the New York metropolitan area as part of the Company's annual University Partners Showcase.
The dancers of the Martha Graham Dance Company are So Young An, Alyssa Cebulski, Alessio Crognale, Laurel Dalley Smith, Natasha M. Diamond-Walker, Lloyd Knight, Charlotte Landreau, Jacob Larsen, Lloyd Mayor, Marzia Memoli, Anne O'Donnell, Lorenzo Pagano, Aoi Sato, Ben Schultz, Anne Souder, Androniki Vasili, Leslie Andrea Williams, and Xin Ying.
New York City Center Programs
Wednesday, April 22 at 7pm (Gala Program)
World Premiere by Andrea Miller
Deep Song featuring Diana Vishneva (music: Henry Cowell)
Theme and Variations from Appalachian Spring by Martha Graham
Martha's Women: signature Graham solos from Appalachian Spring, Night Journey, and Cave of the Heart
Duet from The Auditions by Troy Schumacher (music: Augusta Read Thomas, costumes: Karen Young)
Thursday, April 23 and Saturday, April 25 at 8pm (Program A)
World Premiere by Andrea Miller
Friday, April 24 at 8pm (Program B)
World Premiere by Andrea Miller
Untitled (Souvenir) by Pam Tanowitz (music: Caroline Shaw, costumes: Ryan Lobo and Ramon Martin of TOME)
Saturday, April 25 at 2pm
University Partners Showcase
An afternoon of classic modern dance by Martha Graham and other choreographers, performed by students from the Company's educational partners.
Sunday, April 26 at 2pm (Program C)
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