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Smuin Concludes Its 26th Season With 'Dance Series 2'

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Smuin Contemporary Ballet's groundbreaking spring program will introduce the Bay Area to internationally renowned Cuban choreographer Osnel Delgado, with the thrilling World Premiere of S-Quimera, combining flawless contemporary dance with Afro-Cuban and Latin social dances to create a piece truly unique to Smuin.

Co-founder and Artistic Director of Havana's Malpaso Dance Company, an Associate Company of Joyce Theater Productions, Delgado's movement offers up passion, intricate musicality, and an exploration of relationships that transcend borders. Also on the program, back by popular demand, is Annabelle Lopez Ochoa's Requiem for a Rose, a captivating ballet set to one of Schubert's most romantic adagios. Lopez Ochoa, introduced to the Bay Area by Smuin in 2017, was inspired by her reflection on the meaning of true love and fleeting romance in creating this sublime work, which the San Francisco Classical Voice declared "perfection!"

Rounding out the bill is Symphony of Psalms, Michael Smuin's spiritually evocative piece set to the dramatic Stravinsky score of the same name. Dance Series 2 will tour the Bay Area, beginning with shows in San Francisco (April 24-May 2), continuing in Walnut Creek (May 15-16) and Mountain View (May 21-24) and finishing up in Carmel (June 5-6). Tickets ($25-$97) are available by calling the individual venues (see below for details) or visiting www.smuinballet.org.

Smuin will introduce Cuban choreographer Osnel Delgado with the World Premiere of S-Quimera, a creation inspired by the question, "What if this was your last dance?" Moved by the story of Smuin Contemporary Ballet founder Michael Smuin's unexpected passing while teaching company class in 2007, Delgado aims to explore this profound question through a unique blend of Afro-Cuban and contemporary movement. His choreography expresses the passion, cultural blending, and uncertainty of life, drawing his inspiration from Cuba's rich and varied dance traditions-from the beloved Cuban ballet culture, to the vibrant modern dance scene. Delgado is the Founder and Artistic Director of Malpaso Dance Company, an Associate Company of Joyce Theater Productions. Prior to founding Malpaso, he danced with Danza Contemporanea de Cuba from 2003 to 2011. The following year he met Smuin Artistic Director Celia Fushille during her visit to the Latin country. Together with The Joyce, Malpaso has commissioned original works from prominent choreographers such as Trey McIntyre-well-known to Smuin, as the Company has performed his work Blue Until June, and premiered Oh, Inverted World and Be Here Now, to great acclaim.

Smuin first introduced Bay Area audiences to acclaimed Colombian-Belgian dancemaker Annabelle Lopez Ochoa in fall 2017 with the West Coast premiere of Requiem for a Rose, called "Intriguing. Brilliant. A meditation on the nature of love," by the San Francisco Chronicle. Set to what many consider to be Schubert's most romantic string adagio, from the Quintet in C, Requiem for a Rose examines the difference between the ephemeral nature of romance and the enduring devotion of love. Lopez Ochoa is an internationally acclaimed choreographer who both choreographs contemporary dance works and adapts her style for classical ballet companies. She also creates for theatre, opera, and fashion events such as celebrated Dutch fashion designers Viktor & Rolf's project in the Van Gogh Museum. She has created works for more than 40 dance companies around the world including Dutch National Ballet, Ballet du Grand Théâtre de Genève, The Royal Ballet of Flanders, Ballet National de Marseille, Ballet Hispánico, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Ballet Nacional de Cuba, and New York City Ballet, among others.

Michael Smuin's otherworldly Symphony of Psalms, set to the dramatic Stravinsky choral score, showcases the dancers' magnificent strength and musicality through inventive shapes and intricate partnering. Mysterious and climactic, the pale blue and white costuming coupled with the cool-hued staging evoke a frosty underworld. This majestic display of gorgeous classical ballet was called "poetry" by The Mercury News, and a "[blend of] dance and music into something more, an evocation of the spirituality to be found in religion and in classical ballet" by The New York Times.


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