RAWdance ROARs Into 15th Season with Triple Bill Next January

RAWdance ROARs Into 15th Season with Triple Bill Next January

In celebration of its 15th anniversary next year, RAWdance is proud to announce ROAR, a triple bill featuring two world premieres, January 24 - 26, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA) in San Francisco. Rounding out the program is a remount of Brilliant Alarm, which premiered last year as part of YBCA's Transform Fest. Tickets, $25 - $40, will go on sale November 6 at YBCA.org. Roar is presented in association with YBCA.

RAWdance's 15th anniversary season delivers a suite of three works, reflecting on uncertain times past and present. "The program is united in applying an historical lens to the current tenuous and divided state of our nation, finding lessons in the past and flashes of hope for the future," said Wendy Rein, who co-founded and directs RAWdance together with Ryan T. Smith.

Smith and Rein will choreograph one of the two premieres on the program. Taking its name from the decade of the Roaring 1920s, Roar "peels away the glitz and glam of the Jazz Age to illuminate the brewing rifts and extreme economic disparity sweeping the country." The work features a sextet of dancers, including Smith and Rein, and an original score by composer Joel St. Julien.

The second premiere on the program will be choreographed by Katerina Wong, who has danced with the company since 2014, and who this fall was elevated to the post of RAWdance's first associate artistic director. Titled 14, Wong's piece draws inspiration from the history of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which celebrated the sesquicentennial of its ratification this year. Her interest in the Amendment rests largely on the Equal Protection Clause, which "has been used both to grant and deny civil rights," and which she notes, "sits at the base of many of our current political battlegrounds." Wong joins a quintet of dancers in 14.

The final work on the program, Brilliant Alarm, choreographed by Smith and Rein, responds to recurring cycles of anti-intellectual rhetoric throughout modern history. It features an original score by Surabhi Saraf, and a sextet of dancers including Smith, Rein and Wong.

In addition to its directors, RAWdance's performers this season include Kelly Del Rosario, Kaitlyn Ebert, Carly Johnson, Tayler Kinner, Aaron Perlstein, Nick Wagner, Juliann Witt, and Stacey Yuen. Additional collaborators include scenic designer Chad Owens and lighting designer Allen Willner.

Commenting on the appointment of Wong to RAWdance's first associate artistic director, Smith said: "Katie has been one of the company's most consistent and charismatic presences in our works for many years, while also carving out her own voice creating works for companies and projects as diverse as The Cutting Ball Theater and Pop-Up Magazine. She will help launch RAWdance into its next phase, offering a more robust platform for emerging choreographers to make their mark."

Photo: Ryan T. Smith photographed by Elena Zhukova.

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