Broadway Dance Lab Announces Summer Cycle, Commissioned Performance at Fire Island Dance Festival

By: May. 29, 2018
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Broadway Dance Lab Announces Summer Cycle, Commissioned Performance at Fire Island Dance Festival

Broadway Dance Lab (BDL), a non-profit arts service organization supporting new works of dance-driven theatre, has announced the launch of its 2018 Summer Cycle. Two-time Tony award nominee John Carrafa, Kristen Carcone, and Helen Simoneau have each received creation grants to experiment with the development of new work. The Cycle will run June 4-29. BDL 2018 Summer Cycle grantees Helen Simoneau, John Carrafa, and Kristen Carcone.

The full roster of dancers includes Justina Aveyard, Stephanie Brooks, Connor Coughlin, Joshua Lamar, Kelly Loughran, Niko Martinez, Chase Maxwell, Michaela McGowan, Bethany Puente, Cassandra Surianello, Matthew Vincent Taylor, and Richard Walters.

Additionally, the company has been commissioned by Dancers Responding to Aids to present a new work at the opening night Leadership Event of Fire Island Dance Festival, on Friday July 20. Artistic Director Josh Prince will present a new suite of dances set to memorable overtures, including Leonard Bernstein's Candide

"BDL allows choreographers to validate the choice to go towards fear," Prince said. "It gives artists the chance to discover their deepest inner voice, and share it with the world. The entire community benefits when we carve out time and space for discovery."

Recipients of Broadway Dance Lab's creation grants receive 20 hours of unrestricted rehearsal time, in large, pole-free studios, with a company of 12 versatile dancers. There are no guidelines as to what the choreographers should explore, and no formal performances take place. To learn more about the company, visit

Broadway Dance Lab is a 501(c)(3) organization founded by Broadway choreographer, Josh Prince (Beautiful, Shrek), and serves as a choreography incubator designed to promote the use of dance in musical theater. The company provides space, dancers and private creative time to choreographers of all technical backgrounds so that they may grow their ideas and collaborate more effectively with colleagues in the field.

Josh Prince began his career as an actor, appearing on Broadway in Little Me and Saturday Night Fever, where he understudied the role of "Bobby C". Among numerous regional theater and concert credits, he starred Off-Broadway in Forbidden Broadway, toured the country as "Skimbleshanks" in Cats, and played "Carmen Ghia" in The Producers opposite Jason Alexander and Martin Short at the Pantages Theater in Los Angeles.

In 2006, Josh made his Broadway choreographic debut with Shrek, The Musical (Outer Critics Circle Nomination), which opened on Broadway in December, 2008 and went on to tour the US, play in London's West End, and tour the UK. He has choreographed shows at prestigious venues across the US and UK, including New York City Center, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The Kennedy Center, The Signature Theatre (DC), BAM, The New Group, The Old Vic, Royal Festival Hall, and The Royal Albert Hall. Josh choreographed a new adaptation of the animated film, Frozen, for Disney Cruise Lines, and made his directorial debut with Grease at the Winter Garden Theater in Toronto, CA. He is the choreographer of the new musical, Trevor, with director, Marc Bruni, and is currently collaborating with Tony-nominated director, Sheryl Kaller, on the new musical, A Walk On The Moon at American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco.

Josh is currently the choreographer for the hit Broadway show, Beautiful - The Carole King Musical (Tony, Olivier, and Fred and Adele Astaire Award nominations), which is currently running at the Sondheim Theatre and touring the US, UK, and Australia.

Kristen Carcone is a Toronto-born, internationally acclaimed dancer, choreographer, teacher, and reiki healer. She is a company member of Third Rail Projects (New York, NY), currently performing in their Bessie award winning production Then She Fell . Kristen is a guest artist with cross-disciplinary performance company, FROG IN HAND, and has also performed the original works of Jason Parsons, Nicole Von Arx, Kate Wallich, Gabriel Forestieri, and the Kuperman Brothers. She has performed internationally in a variety of shows and festivals including: The Phish Concert at Madison Square Garden (New York, NY), Tangente's Danses Buissonnieres (Montreal, Quebec), The New Prague Dance Festival (Prague, Czech Republic) and Art Gallery of Ontario's MASSIVE PARTY (Toronto, Ontario).

In 2016, Kristen was named one of the 25 Most Influential Young Choreographers to watch by Narcity Toronto. Her choreography can be seen in Joseph Gordon Levitt's My Favourite Things video, Cardinal's Pride music video Masterpiece, and in Supa'Nova, a new play by Maria Corina Ramirez. Kristen's work has been described as "energetic, highly entertaining and refreshingly playful" - Sarah Lochhead/The Dance Current. As a creator of experiential theatre, Kristen has great interest in mindful performance and healing through the arts. She encourages cross-disciplinary collaboration between artists of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds, aiming to share stories that are inclusive, honest, and, of course, entertaining. Thanks to funding from the Toronto Arts Council, and support from lululemon NY, Kristen's latest work 4-7-8 will premiere Fall 2018 in Toronto.

Kristen is Co-Founder and Co-Artistic Director of TOES FOR DANCE, an internationally recognized non-profit organization that has been featured in the Globe and Mail, Mississauga News, and The Dance Current Magazine. She graduated from the dance division of New World School of the Arts in 2011 earning her Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree with Highest Honors.

John Carrafa is the two time Tony nominated choreographer of Urinetown and Into the Woods. He is the recipient of Obie, Lortel and Dora Awards for Urinetown, as well as Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle nominations. He currently choreographs and directs both in Los Angeles and New York, developing original work for both theater and film. Recent TV work includes Maniacs, Succession, The Week Of, Freaky Friday, and Nashville.

HELEN SIMONEAU, a native of Rimouski, Québec. Described as "a Choreographer-on-the-rise [with style that is] athletic and smooth," by Dance Magazine, Simoneau has been commissioned by The Juilliard School, Oregon Ballet Theatre, the American Dance Festival, UNC School of the Arts, UArts (PA), The Yard, Springboard Danse Montréal, and the Swiss International Coaching Project (SiWiC) in Zurich. She was a resident artist at Baryshnikov Arts Center, Bates Dance Festival and has received fellowships from The NYU Center for Ballet and the Arts, the Bogliasco Foundation, and twice from the North Carolina Arts Council. Her company Helen Simoneau Danse has been presented in Austria, Brazil, Canada, France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, and has toured throughout Germany, Asia, and the United States. Notable venues that have presented her work include The Guggenheim Museum (NYC), Dance Place (DC), Joyce SoHo (NYC), Tangente (Montréal), The Aoyama Round Theatre (Tokyo), the L.I.G. Art Hall Busan (South Korea), Jacob's Pillow Inside/ Out (MA), PACT-Zollverein in Essen (Germany), and Athens International Dance Festival (Greece). Her work was also presented at the 13th Internationales SoloTanz-Theatre Festival in Stuttgart, Germany, where she was awarded 1st place for Choreography.


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