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Upcoming Bryant Park Picnic Performances to Feature Limón Dance Company, Paul Taylor Dance Company & More


Bryant Park will be welcoming guests to these Picnic Performance events on a first-come, first-served basis; no ticket is necessary.

Upcoming Bryant Park Picnic Performances to Feature Limón Dance Company, Paul Taylor Dance Company & More

Bryant Park Picnic Performances' season of free, live performances this summer continues with six esteemed New York City-based dance companies showcasing their work on the Bryant Park stage. The Dance series begins on August 16 with American Modern dance vanguards Limón Dance Company as well as tap dance from Music From The Sole that explores tap's Afro-diasporic roots; on August 20, Paul Taylor Dance Company and EMERGE125 (formerly Elisa Monte Dance) showcase some of their exhilarating work; and, on August 27, Ballet Hispánico and Jamel Gaines Creative Outlet finish the series with celebrations to Latinx culture and social justice.

Dance curator Tiffany Rea-Fisher says, "As a relatively new Artistic Director (EMERGE125, formerly Elisa Monte Dance), I wanted to honor that specific journey. This led me to reach out to Michael Novak (Paul Taylor Dance Company) and Dante Puleio (Limón Dance Company) to join me in celebrating the continued legacy of our three companies. In my own artistic practice I center joy, so I also wanted to highlight companies that bring me joy when I am in the audience. That's where Ballet Hispánico, Music From The Sole, and Jamel Gaines Creative Outlet come in. This is the first time these companies will share a stage with each other and I can not wait for the art lovers of New York to experience this series."

In line with continually expanding city and state safety protocols, Bryant Park will be welcoming guests to these Picnic Performance events on a first-come, first-served basis; no ticket is necessary. Vaccinated and negative-tested audience members may bring their own picnic blankets or take park-provided chairs for open seating on the world-famous Bryant Park Lawn. Unvaccinated or untested attendees will be offered seating in a separate, socially-distanced section. Food and beverages are available for purchase from vendors in the park. All event attendees are also invited to bring their own food and drinks.

For anyone unable to attend in person, a free livestream broadcast of the performance* will be available nationwide via Bryant Park's website and social media platforms, thanks to the generous support of Bank of America. Additional support for on-site events is provided by Amazon.

For a selection of high-resolution images from the current and previous Bryant Park Picnic Performances seasons, please visit this link. When used, please credit the appropriate photographer as listed in the image filename.

More information about the dance performances, Bryant Park's current COVID-19 safety protocols, and line listings for all Picnic Performances programming follows. For more information about Picnic Performances and to request artist interviews, specific photos of performers, or to arrange for on-site photography or press passes, please contact John Seroff at GreenHouse Publicity by replying to this email.

* Note: only the EMERGE125 performance will be available for the 8/20 livestream

Dance Performance Details

Monday, August 16 at 7PM

Limón Dance Company + Music From The Sole

Limón Dance Company, founded in 1946 by José Limón and Doris Humphrey, has been at the vanguard of American Modern dance since its inception and is considered one of the world's greatest dance companies. The acclaimed Company repertory, which includes classic works in addition to new commissions from contemporary choreographers, possesses an unparalleled breadth and creates unique experiences for audiences around the world. Numerous honors have been bestowed upon both Limón and the Company he founded seventy five years ago, including the White House's 2008 National Medal of Arts for Lifetime Achievement. Additionally, the Company was the first Modern Dance Group to tour under the auspices of the State Department and to perform at Lincoln Center. For their Bryant Park performance, the Company presents two repertory classics: Doris Humphrey's Air for the G String and a Suite from José Limón's The Winged. Created by Doris Humphrey in 1928, Air for the G String is a sculptural dance set to Bach's Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D Major. Five women in long Renaissance-like draperies move slowly in procession reflecting the music's sustained spiritual mood. Inspired by Humphrey's love for the beauty of the music, the flowing movement and reverential gestures suggest an inner exaltation. Through movement that resembles birds, intricate patterns and rhythms, The Winged, transports you to a world of nature that blends with the world of man. Choreographed by José Limón in 1966, the piece possesses an unmatchable sense of beauty and breath.

Music From The Sole opens the evening with excerpts from existing and in-progress works, exploring their identity as both a dance company and a band, embracing that tap dance is both dance and music. Led by Brazilian choreographer Leonardo Sandoval and composer Gregory Richardson, the company was founded in 2015, and has appeared at venues including Lincoln Center, Jacob's Pillow, The Yard, and Caramoor Jazz Festival. They have received support from the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, New England Foundation for the Arts, and the Jerome Foundation, and were recently commissioned new pieces by Works & Process at the Guggenheim. The company is deeply committed to community-focused artistic practice, partnering with organizations like the National Dance Institute and Lincoln Center Education to connect with communities across New York City and beyond through dance and music activities. Their performance at Bryant Park honors tap's jazz and improvisational roots, and features original tap music that incorporates influences from Afro-Brazilian, Afro-Cuban, funk, and house.

Friday, August 20 at 7PM

Paul Taylor Dance Company + EMERGE125

Livestream Note: only EMERGE125 performance will be available for livestream

i??Paul Taylor Dance Company is one of the most famous and dynamic modern dance ensembles of our time, innovating and transforming the art form of modern dance since 1954. Founded by cultural icon and legendary dancemaker Paul Taylor, the Company houses 64 years of Taylor's unrivaled creativity and over a dozen contemporary commissions. Known for multi-disciplinary collaborations, passionate expression, and thrilling athleticism, the Company has performed in more than 500 cities in 64 countries, representing the United States at arts festivals in more than 40 countries and touring extensively under the aegis of the U.S. Department of State, and continues boldly into the future under the leadership of Artistic Director Michael Novak. For this engagement the Company will dance Esplanade, the definitive Taylor work that is at once playful, somber, romantic, and explosive - a pillar of modern dance that instantly affirmed Paul Taylor as one of history's greatest choreographers.

Founded in 1981, EMERGE125 - formerly known as Elisa Monte Dance - is a hub for dance performance, creation, and education. The organization operates dual homes in Harlem and Lake Placid, New York, while serving audiences both locally and around the world. Our rigorous dance education programs impact children, families, pre-professionals and professionals; and our movement and wellness programs engage multi-generational learners from the diverse communities we serve. EMERGE125 has established itself as a leader by setting new standards for dancer care; creating innovative, cross-disciplinary collaborations with leading artists; and using movement as a catalyst for community building: expanding the reach, purpose and impact of the art of dance. At Bryant Park, EMERGE125 will present work from three alluring and engaging pieces, all choreographed by EMERGE125 Executive Artistic Director Tiffany Rea-Fisher. The first piece, Spirit Celestial, is Rea-Fisher's physical response to Sarah Yomen's beautiful visual work. The next piece features two movements - "Tilted Arc" and "Emerged Nation" - from Emerged Nation. "Tilted Arc" references the provocative sculpture of the same name by Richard Serra. Noted as the most notorious public sculpture controversy in the history of art law, the work was removed from New York City's Foley Square in 1989 because of its "obstruction" to the pathway. Rea-Fisher's choreography dives into the heart of Serra's provoking work, as dancers trace the location of the once-celebrated sculpture and investigate the obstruction of pathways such as immigration, separation, and longing. The final piece will be an excerpt from Rights of Renaissance, which explores the untold stories and most pivotal figures of the Harlem Renaissance.

Friday, August 27 at 7pm

Ballet Hispánico + Jamel Gaines Creative Outlet

Ballet Hispánico brings communities together to celebrate and explore Latino cultures through innovative dance productions, transformative dance training, and community engagement. For fifty years, Ballet Hispánico has been the leading voice intersecting artistic excellence and advocacy, and is now the largest Latinx cultural organization in the United States and one of America's Cultural Treasures. National Medal of Arts recipient Tina Ramirez founded Ballet Hispánico in 1970, at the height of the post-war civil rights movements. From its inception Ballet Hispánico focused on providing a haven for Black and Brown Latinx youth and families seeking artistic place and cultural sanctuary. By providing the space for Latinx dance and dancers to flourish, Ballet Hispánico uplifted marginalized emerging and working artists, which combined with the training, authenticity of voice, and power of representation, fueled the organization's roots and trajectory. In 2009, Ballet Hispánico welcomed Eduardo Vilaro as its Artistic Director, ushering in a new era by inserting fresh energy to the company's founding values and leading Ballet Hispánico into an artistically vibrant future. Today, Ballet Hispánico's New York City headquarters house a School of Dance and state-of-the-art dance studios for its programs and the arts community. As it looks to the next fifty years and beyond, Ballet Hispánico seeks to empower, and give agency to, the Latinx experience and those individuals within it.

Jamel Gaines Creative Outlet is a non-profit organization whose mission is to use the artistic expression of dance and other integrated art forms to uplift communities through education, performance and cultural programming. The soul of our work is rooted in social justice, and spiritually connecting to one another through the arts. Founder and Artistic Director, Jamel Gaines has dedicated his life to delivering artistic excellence and stirring, soaring performance to audiences everywhere. With more than 22 years of teaching and choreographing experience, Gaines seeks to inspire, motivate and nurture dancers and artists. Under his leadership, Creative Outlet has set itself apart as a highly acclaimed performing arts organization with a proven record in training the next generation of professional dancers and artists. Some of Jamel's more recent choreography includes the crowd pleasing presentation live streamed across the internet during Spike Lee's Annual Tribute Concert to Michael Jackson televised choreography, and dramatic performance by contestants on So You Think You Can Dance. In addition, Gaines has created and staged over 25 repertory and concert productions.

Sections for Seating

i??1: Vaccinated and Tested Section

Attendees wishing to sit on the west side of the lawn must provide on-site digital or physical proof of full vaccination or a recent negative COVID-19 test along with a government issued photo ID.

We encourage attendees to wear masks during the check-in process. Masks are not required once vaccinated or tested attendees are seated.

Attendees are welcome to enjoy food and drink from one of our many park vendors, or bring their own, for a picnic on the lawn.

Attendees can bring a blanket or use a park chair.

2: Distanced Section

Unvaccinated or untested attendees may sit in our socially distanced section. Masks are strongly encouraged until patrons are seated and properly socially distanced (six feet from other parties at all times).

Once seated and properly socially distanced, tested attendees are welcome to enjoy food and drink.

Attendees will sit in park chairs; no outside blankets or chairs allowed.

Please do not attend if you are unwell.

3: Open Seating Section

Additional non-distanced seating is available off the Bryant Park Lawn on park grounds at attendees' discretion.

Please do not attend if you are unwell.

As New York State and City safety guidelines for public gatherings quickly change in response to the ongoing success of NYC's COVID-19 vaccination program, Bryant Park continues to reassess its on-site protocols for upcoming shows with the intention of safely accommodating as many attendees as possible. For the most current guidelines, program updates and additional venue information and restrictions, please visit

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