Kennedy Center Presents Companhia De Dança Deborah Colker

Internationally acclaimed Brazilian choreographer Deborah Colker and her company, last seen at the Kennedy Center in 2010, return with Dog Without Feathers (Cão Sem Plumas), October 18-20. Incorporating dance, film, and poetry, Colker's latest work is inspired by the late Brazilian author João Cabral de Melo Neto's poem of the same title.

Considered to be one of Brazil's most influential poets, Cabral's 1950 work follows the course of the Capibaribe River, which runs through the state of Pernambuco. His succinct and harsh words portray the poverty of the riverside population, the inequality, and life in the mangrove, an "invincible and anonymous force." Colker vividly brings Cabral's poetry to life through her interpretation of the beautiful, yet impoverished, region. While Cabral's poem is divided into four parts, Colker's work is divided into eight sections.

"I was re-introduced to Cão sem plumas when I was given a book with the poem during a three hour Rio traffic jam. I started to read and to cry," says the choreographer. "It, along with my work, is about inconceivable things, which should not be allowed. It is against human ignorance. We destroy nature, children, everything that is full of life."

As part of the choreographic process, the company undertook a three-week creative and cultural exploration in this harsh landscape to understand and explore the ways in which the mud, poverty, and mangroves of the region shape the people who reside and rely on the river for life. With set design by Gringo Cardia and lighting design by Jorginho de Carvalho, dancers clad in mud perform against scenes from a film that is projected on stage. Made by Colker and award-winning filmmaker Cláudio Assis, the film captures the company's journey in the region. The work also examines the region's manguebeat movement, a unique rhythm that has emerged from the reaction to the cultural and economic stagnation of the area.

Companhia de Dança Deborah Colker is part of The Human Journey, the Kennedy Center's season-long investigation of who we are as a people that examines art and creativity through the lenses of migration, environment, discovery, identity, citizenship, and legacy.

Companhia de Dança Deborah Colker is based in Rio de Janeiro and has developed an international reputation as one of today's leading contemporary dance companies. It has won numerous awards and recognition worldwide, including the Prix Benois de la Dance for choreography for Dog Without Feathers (Cão Sem Plumas), and has toured four continents, performing on some of the most important stages in the world. Since she founded Companhia de Dança Deborah Colker in 1994, the namesake Brazilian director/choreographer has made a distinctive impression in the dance world. Inspired by her experiences as an athlete, Colker marries physically daring feats with visually striking designs to challenge notions of space and gravity, and redefine the rules of dance. Among her many awards and accomplishments, she was director of movement for the 2016 Rio Olympics, is the creator of Ovo, the popular Cirque de Soleil show, and earned the distinction of being the first Brazilian artist to receive the prestigious Laurence Olivier Award in 2001.

Tickets start at $29. Tickets can be purchased at the Kennedy Center box office or by calling Instant Charge at (202) 467-4600. Patrons living outside the Washington metropolitan area may dial toll-free at (800) 444-1324. For all other ticket-related customer service inquiries, call the Advance Sales Box Office at (202) 416-8540.

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