Parsons Dance's 30th Anniversary Gala to Honor Paul Taylor, David Parson & Robert Battle, 1/14

Parsons Dance, one of the nation's most popular and acclaimed modern dance companies, will honor three legends of the dance world -- Paul Taylor, David Parsons and Robert Battle -- at its gala on Tuesday, January 14 at The Joyce Theater (175 Eighth Avenue at 19th Street). The event, a celebration of the company's 30th Anniversary Season, will include a performance at The Joyce, followed by dinner, dancing and a live auction at the nearby Chelsea home of Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, 547 West 26th Street (transportation will be provided). For tickets and additional information, please visit or call (212) 869-9275.

This special 30th Anniversary celebration will honor the legacy of three collaborative artists who had a deep impact on each other. Paul Taylor hired David Parsons as a young dancer and mentored him into an acclaimed choreographer. Robert Battle was hired by Parsons who encouraged the young dancer to expand his own creative interests in choreography.

To recognize these three forces in the dance world, the special program for opening night will include the Paul Taylor Dance Company presenting excerpts from Taylor's Cloven Kingdom, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater alumnus Clifton Brown in Parsons' Caught, and Robert Battle's The Hunt, performed by Parsons Dance. Carolyn Adams, former Paul Taylor Dancer (1965-1982) during which time she danced with David, and co-founder of the Harlem Dance Foundation will speak about her experiences with all three honorees and their history.

To celebrate 30 years, the company will expand its mission and give young American choreographers a chance to create new works for Parsons Dance on stages across the country. Parsons Dance announces the newly developed GENERATION NOW DANCE PROJECT. David Parsons will use his company to build opportunities for America's next generation of dance-makers.

The Parsons Dance season at The Joyce will continue through January 26 with a program that features the world premiere of David Parsons' Introduction, along with audience favorites from the company's repertoire, such as Nascimento Novo, The Envelope and, of course, Caught. Also seen this engagement will be Battle's The Hunt.

Tickets for performances January 15 - 26, priced from $10 - $59 ($26 - $44 for Joyce members), can be purchased by calling JoyceCharge at 212-242-0800 or via the internet at The Joyce Theater is located at 175 Eighth Avenue (@ 19th street) in Chelsea. For more information, please visit

David Parsons (Artistic Director/Founder) has enjoyed a remarkable career as a performer, choreographer, teacher, director and producer of dance. Mr. Parsons was born near Chicago and raised in Kansas City. He was a leading dancer with The Paul Taylor Dance Company, where Mr. Taylor created many roles for him in works such as Arden Court, Last Look and Roses. He is a recipient of the 2000 Dance Magazine Award, the 2001 American Choreography Award, as well as, the 2011 Dance Masters of America Award. Mr. Parsons has created more than 70 works for Parsons Dance. He has also received commissions from American Ballet Theatre, New York City Ballet, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, the American Dance Festival, Jacob's Pillow, the Spoleto Festival and Het Muziektheater in Amsterdam, to name a few. His work has been performed by Paris Opera Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, Nederlands Danse Theatre, National Ballet of Canada, Hubbard Street Dance and Batsheva Dance Company of Israel, among many others.

Robert Battle was personally selected by Judith Jamison to succeed her as Artistic Director of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in 2011. Prior to his appointment, Mr. Battle had a long association with the Ailey organization as a choreographer and artist-in-residence. Since becoming Artistic Director, he has received critical and audience acclaim for expanding Ailey's repertory and he has also instituted a New Directions Choreography Lab. His journey to the top of the modern dance world began at New World School of the Arts and The Juilliard School. He danced with Parsons Dance Company from 1994 to 2001, and set his choreography on that company starting in 1998. His own Battleworks Dance Company flourished from 2002 to 2011. Mr. Battle has been honored as a "Master of African-American Choreography" by the Kennedy Center, and he received the prestigious Statue Award from the Princess Grace Foundation-USA.

Paul Taylor is the greatest living pioneer of American modern dance, with 139 dances made since 1954 when he established the Paul Taylor Dance Company. He continues to offer cogent observations on life's complexities and society's thorniest issues through his works. A virtuoso dancer for 20 years, Mr. Taylor turned exclusively to choreography in 1974; the dance that followed, Esplanade, was hailed an instant classic. His works are performed by PTDC, Taylor 2 and companies the world over. Kennedy Center honoree, he is the subject of the Oscar-nominated documentary, Dancemaker, and author of the acclaimed autobiography, Private Domain.

Parsons Dance is an internationally renowned contemporary Dance Company under the artistic direction of dancer/choreographer David Parsons. Parsons Dance is committed to building new audiences for contemporary dance by creating American works of extraordinary artistry that are both engaging and uplifting to audiences throughout the world. Parsons Dance tours nationally and internationally, including an annual season in its home community of New York City. Parsons Dance includes eight full-time dancers and maintains a repertory of more than 70 works choreographed by David Parsons. Since 1985, Parsons Dance has toured more than 350 cities, 35 countries, five continents and millions of audience members. Many more have seen Parsons Dance on PBS, Bravo, A&E Network and the Discovery Channel.

The Joyce Theater Foundation, a non-profit organization, has proudly served the dance community and its audiences for three decades. The founders, Cora Cahan and Eliot Feld, acquired and renovated the Elgin Theater in Chelsea, which opened as The Joyce Theater in 1982. The Joyce Theater is named in honor of Joyce Mertz, beloved daughter of LuEsther T. Mertz. It was LuEsther's clear, undaunted vision and abundant generosity that made it imaginable and ultimately possible to build the theater. One of the only theaters built by dancers for dance, The Joyce Theater has provided an intimate and elegant home for more than 320 domestic and international companies. The Joyce has also commissioned more than 130 new dances since 1992. In 1996, The Joyce created Joyce SoHo, a dance center providing highly subsidized rehearsal and performance space to hundreds of dance artists, as well as special residency opportunities for selected choreographers to support the creation of new work. In 2009, The Joyce opened Dance Art New York (DANY) Studios to provide affordable studios for rehearsals, auditions, classes, and workshops for independent choreographers, non-profit dance companies, and the dance/theater communities. New York City public school students and teachers annually benefit from The Joyce's Dance Education Program, and adult audiences get closer to dance through pre-engagement Dance Talks and post-performance Dance Chats. The Joyce Theater now features an annual season of approximately 48 weeks with over 340 performances for audiences in excess of 135,000.

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