Deeply Rooted Dance Theatre Announces 20th Season

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Deeply Rooted Dance Theater (DRDT), which creates world-class dance inspired by the African diaspora in a community dedicated to nurturing artists, supporting human relationships and sharing common values through engaging in dance, announces its 20th anniversary season, featuring three concert series spanning the Chicago area. The season kicks off with performances December 3 and 4 at the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th Street in Chicago's Hyde Park neighborhood.

The kickoff concert series December 3 and 4 features two world premieres. When Men, which explores the idea of abandoning stigmas to strengthen from within, is choreographed by DRDT company member Joshua L. Ishmon, with music by Ananda Giri and Paolo Nutini and text by Charlie Chaplin.Femme, which celebrates the allure, courage, strength and beauty of women, is choreographed by DRDT Summer Intensive Program Director and Artistic Team member Nicole Clarke-Springer, with music by Nina Simone.

The December program also includes a revival of Jagged Ledges (2004), which explores the plight of people living with HIV/AIDS and the soul's quest for freedom, choreographed by DRDT Co-Founder and Associate Artistic Director Gary Abbott and DRDT Co-Founder and Artistic Director Kevin Iega Jeff, with music by Martin Tillman, Tom Bedvik, Jai Utal and Peter Gabriel and text by Staceyann Chin. Jeff commented, "The revival will be an updated treatment of the work, reflecting how people in Chicago's communities face similar challenges today."

Other repertoire on the program includes The March, reflections on American's Civil Rights era, choreographed by Jeff and Abbott to music by Roberta Flack and Samuel Barber; Bach'd (2011), which reflects the timeless grace, passion, power and rhythmic qualities of Johann Sebastian Bach's compositions, choreographed by Abbott; Wild is the Wind (2013), choreographed by Jeff to music by Nina Simone; and Heaven (2004), which celebrates joy and humanity, clarity and resolve, choreographed by Jeff and Abbott to original music by Raymond Jones.

The 20th anniversary season continues in February 2017 with a love-themed concert, in celebration of Valentine's Day, at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in north suburban Skokie and concludes in November 2017 with performances at the Studebaker Theatre in downtown Chicago.

Founded in 1995, Deeply Rooted Dance Theater is rooted in traditions of African-American dance, storytelling and universal themes that spark a visceral experience and ignite an emotional response in diverse audiences worldwide. Collaborating with nationally renowned choreographers across the spectrum of modern, ballet and African dance, DRDT presents work that reflects many voices in contemporary life.

Deeply Rooted's programs are partially supported by the Boeing Company, the Chicago Community Trust, the Illinois Arts Council, the Irving Harris Fund, the Joyce Foundation, Lake Shore Chapter of the Links, Inc., MacArthur Foundation funds through the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation's International Connections Fund and the Deeply Rooted Family of Friends.

Deeply Rooted Dance Theater's 20th anniversary season kickoff performances take place December 3 at 7:30 p.m. and December 4 at 2 p.m. at the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th Street, Chicago. Tickets are $45­-55 and available on beginning October 10; student tickets are $25. Benefactor tickets for $150, also on, include an after-party with the artists following the December 4 matinee. All programming is subject to availability. For information, call 312-795-9777 or visit

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