Pilobolus Returns Tonight; Program Features Collaborative Work with Penn & Teller

Pilobolus, the dance theatre troupe known for its performances that are part dance, part mime and part sculpture and filled with humor, athleticism and theatricality, returns to Houston tonight, Jan. 10, 2014, at 7:30 p.m. in Jones Hall.

The program will include [esc] (2013), a new premier work featuring escape artistry inspired by Houdini and created with American illusionists Penn and Teller; Rushes (2007), a collaboration with Israeli choreographers Inbal Pinto and Avshalom Pollak that depicts an isolated community of broken dreams; The Transformation (2009), an excerpt from the company's full-length work Shadowland that features a young woman as she is transformed before audience members' eyes; Ocellus (1972), a classic Pilobolus work with four male company members; and Licks (2013), featuring 12 ropes and six dancers and choreography that is wild, rowdy, dangerous, sexy and absurd.

Named after a barnyard fungus that propels its spores with extraordinary speed, accuracy and strength, Pilobolus was founded by a group of Dartmouth College students in 1971. Based in Washington Depot, Conn., the company continually forms diverse collaborations that break down barriers between disciplines and challenge the way we think about dance. Physically and intellectually, the company engages and inspires audiences around the world through performance, education and consultation.

Pilobolus has transformed from an avant-garde Dance Company into an international entertainment brand featured on the likes of "The Academy Awards," "The Oprah Winfrey Show," "Sesame Street" and "Late Night with Conan O'Brien." The company has explored worlds as disparate as advertising, publishing, film and music videos. Pilobolus was nominated for a 2012 Grammy Award for the video for OK Go's "All Is Not Lost." The company maintains its own singular style, evolving interplay with shape-shifting, shadow play and other explorations, while actively collaborating with the best and brightest minds from all conceivable professions the world over.

The recipient of numerous prestigious honors, including the Berlin Critic's Prize, the Scotsman Award, the Brandeis Award, a Primetime Emmy Award for outstanding achievement in cultural programming, the Samuel H. Scripps American Dance Festival Award for lifetime achievement in choreography, and a TED Fellowship for performing a TED Talk in 2005, Pilobolus has performed live in 64 countries. In 2010, the company was honored as the first collective to receive the Dance Magazine Award, which recognizes artists who have made lasting contributions to the field.

Tickets range from $23-$68 and can be purchased online at www.spahouston.org, by phone at 713-227-4772 or at the courtyard level ticket office at Jones Hall located at 615 Louisiana St. Hours of operation: 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., Monday - Friday. For groups of 15 or more call 713-632-8113.

Beyond the Spotlight

Dance Master Classes
7:30 - 9 p.m. Thursday, January 9, 2014
Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center
5601 South Braeswood Blvd, Houston 77096

Intermediate and advanced level dance students are invited to a master class led by company members from Pilobolus. Beginners and dance lovers may participate as observers. Register in advance for only $5 or pay $10 at the door. Space is limited! Contact the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center at 713.729.3200 ext. 3223 or email msilberstein@erjcchouston.org to register today.

About Society for the Performing Arts: Founded in 1966, Society for the Performing Arts (SPA) is the largest independent non-profit presenting organization in the Southwest. Since its inception, SPA has sponsored more than 1,000 performances of the world's finest music, dance and theater events, in adherence to the belief that the arts are fundamental to the overall enrichment and quality of life within the community. In addition to presenting artists, SPA seeks to provide a variety of learning experiences for adults and children through master classes, lectures and special student performances, as well as build relationships between the performing arts and other interests within the greater Houston area and throughout the state of Texas.

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