Hudson River Dance Festival Set for 6/15-16

Hudson River Park, one of the nation's longest waterfront parks and an urban oasis for New Yorkers and visitors from every corner of the world, will be the stunning natural setting for the second annual Hudson River Dance Festival, presented at Pier 63 in Hudson River Park. This free celebration of NYC's premier dance culture is a rare and unique opportunity for diverse audiences to experience some of the most talented and acclaimed dancers and ground-breaking dance compositions and performances in the world. The Festival takes place on Wednesday, June 15th, and Thursday, June 16th at 6:30 p.m. The same program will be featured each evening.

The renowned Stephen Petronio Company, Lar Lubovitch Dance Company, and Urban Bush Women have each planned engaging and distinctive programs that spotlight the culturally rich and stylistically innovative world of dance that makes New York the epicenter of the American dance scene. Each program is designed to delight a broad audience, from aficionados and dance enthusiasts, to families and new-to-the-world-of-dance audiences alike. The Hudson River Dance Festival is sponsored and presented by SHS Foundation in association with The Joyce Theater, with funding from The Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation, and the Hudson River Park Trust.

"Celebrating the richness and diversity of our City's cultural arts, and ensuring that all New Yorkers can experience first-hand the joy they bring is at the heart of what we do at SHS," said Richard Feldman, President of the SHS Foundation. "A summertime sunset along the Hudson River waterfront is the perfect setting for experiencing the work of these three remarkable dance visionaries and their talented companies."

The Hudson River Dance Festival is part of an ongoing commitment by the Hudson River Park Trust to present free and low cost cultural, artistic and educational programming for all visitors to the Park's Manhattan's waterfront location from 59th Street to Chambers Street, on the West Side.

"New York City is the world's cultural epicenter for modern dance," said Madelyn Wils, CEO and President of the Hudson River Park Trust. "We are excited that once again The SHS Foundation is supporting us in our endeavor to make the riveting work of these renowned dance companies accessible to all New Yorkers. We invite everyone to join us at Hudson River Park's Pier 63 waterfront for the unusual vision of contemporary dance with the Hudson River as its magnificent back drop."

"I am delighted that The Joyce is collaborating for a second year with Hudson River Park to bring this free outdoor dance festival to life-what a wonderful opportunity for all of New York," says Linda Shelton, the Executive Director of The Joyce Theater Foundation. "We are honored to have curated this year's program featuring several of New York City's top contemporary dance companies."

For over 30 years, Stephen Petronio, one of the leading dance-makers of his generation, has built a groundbreaking body of work with some of the most talented and provocative artists in the world. New music, visual art, and fashion collide in the sensual and powerfully modern works offered by Stephen Petronio Company. Hudson River Dance Festival audiences will delight to a waterside performance of Locomotor, created in 2014, a dance that addresses the elemental act of bodies traveling-extreme locomotive states that cast the dancers in a careening mix of action forward and backward through time and space. The piece features an original score by electronic pioneer Clams Casino and costumes by one of America's foremost fashion designers, Narciso Rodriguez.

"There's something exciting about bringing a work that's been sealed inside the theater out into a public space," said Stephen Petronio, Artistic Director and Choreographer of the world-renowned Stephen Petronio Company. "Sharing a performance in this way is what summer in the city is all about."

One of America's most versatile and highly acclaimed choreographers, Lar Lubovitch has choreographed more than 100 dances for his New York-based company, which has performed in nearly all 50 states and more than 40 countries. Dances created by the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company are renowned for their musicality, rhapsodic style and sophisticated formal structures. On June 15th and 16th in Hudson River Park, the company will perform two pieces: Duet from "....smile with my heart," My Funny Valentine, commissioned by American Ballet Theatre as a tribute to the great American composer Richard Rodgers, and Duet from Concerto Six Twenty-Two. Created in 1986, this dance, set to Mozart's Concerto for Clarinet and Orchestra, was inspired by the support shown by friends and communities during the height of the AIDS crisis.

"The most important thing about these free performances is that they confirm that art belongs to everyone. No one is deterred by the price of a ticket from discovering the beauty and humanity of dance," said Lar Lubovitch, Artistic Director of the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company

For more than three decades, Urban Bush Women, under the direction of Founder/Visioning Partner Jawole Willa Jo Zollar has been dedicated to exploring the use of cultural expression as a catalyst for social change, highlighting the power, beauty and strength of the African Diaspora. This summer, Hudson River Park audiences will have the opportunity to experience 30th Anniversary Mash Up, a celebration of bold and iconic dance moments from three decades of the company's work, featuring excerpts from Give Your Hands To Struggle, Bitter Tongue, Shelter, Women's Resistance, Batty Moves and Walking with 'Trane. Music is by Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, with original sound compositions by Trey Judson in collaboration with Kakilambe - African American Cultural Center Drum Troupe.

"I am so proud that UBW has sustained itself for 30-plus years and that our work has been accomplished by community support," said Urban Bush Women Founder Jawole Willa Jo Zollar. "We are excited to bring our work to the Hudson River Park community this summer."

The Joyce Theater Foundation has served the dance community and its audiences since 1982 and played an integral role in developing the Hudson River Dance Festival program to appeal to a wide array of dance performance enthusiasts and newcomers alike. The Joyce's free outdoor programming initiatives are made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; as well as supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council with special thanks to Council Member Corey Johnson.

For more information about the Hudson River Dance Festival, or to learn about other Summer 2016 events in Hudson River Park, please visit: http://www.hudsonriverpark.org/events.

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