MICHAEL MAO DANCE Begins 26th Year with a Program of Major Mao Dances
MICHAEL MAO DANCE begins its 26th year with a program of major Mao dances, including 1994-DSCH, along with other works to music by Kurt Weill, and Taiko drumming, May 24 & 25 at the Ailey Citigroup Theater, 405 West 55 Street.
Tickets: $25; $10 for students/seniors/dancer
Reservations: www.brownpapertickets.com or 1.800.838.3006
Mao originally choreographed the work in 1994 in preparation for a tour of Israel, but finds that it is totally relevant for America today. Dedicated to victims of fascism and war by composer Dimitri Shostakovich, the music was composed in Dresden shortly after the composer was forced to join the Soviet Communist Party of the then Soviet Union. The quartet soon achieved its place in history as Shostakovich's cry against the holocaust and oppression.
On a lighter note are three Mao works:
Weaving, set to big drums known as Taiko. The work was performed at the Edinburgh Festival.
Riddles is set to Kurt Weill's cantankerous Threepenny Suite. Commissioned for one of the Company's Paris performances, the work celebrates women and a battle of the sexes in 2019;
Written on the Wind is a modern fable that follows three individuals on separate paths on which they encounter one another. Audience members invariably come up with their own interpretation of the story, but interestingly, each person's story is individual and different than others. Music is by composer Huang Ruo, visuals by Shawn Duan.
MICHAEL MAO began choreographing in 1973 under the tutelage of Toby Armour, and has since created over 60 works which have been presented throughout the U.S., Edinburgh, the UK, Paris, Stockholm, Australia, Italy, Hong Kong, and throughout China. Mao left his native Shanghai at the age of five and received his dance training in the U.S. A. at the Graham School, Cunningham Studio, and the Joffrey School. He danced for Toby Armour's Boston-based company from 1971 to 1986, appearing in works by Armour, Carolyn Brown, James Waring, Remy Charlip, Lotte Goslar, and others.
Mao's works have been commissioned by, or re-set for numerous companies, including the National Ballet of Kosovo, the Hong Kong Ballet, Cafe de la Danse in Paris, the Festival Internacional Cervantino of Mexico, and more.
Photo Credit: Lois Greenfield