Triangle Arts and Entertainment – News and Reviews Theatre Dance Music Arts


JUNE 11 – JULY 25, 2009
8 World Premieres 1 US Premiere 4 Reconstructions

The American Dance Festival (ADF) rings in 76 glorious years by exploring Where Ballet and Modern Meet. The Festival will investigate the influences that modern dance and ballet have had on one another through performance and panel discussions, among other activities. Focusing on the impact each dance form has had in the development of current artistic expression, the eclectic works presented will look at the boundaries that do or do not exist between the two. Many of the modern choreographers represented this season – Paul Taylor, Twyla Tharp, Laura Dean, Ohad Naharin, Mark Morris, and Shen Wei – have choreographed works for some of the world’s top ballet companies. Similarly, ballet choreographers such as William Forsythe have also influenced the modern dance world. Festival audiences will get a taste of this most intriguing intersection of forms at the ADF this summer. The 2009 Festival will also feature commissioned World Premieres from Festival favorites Shen Wei Dance Arts, Pilobolus, and new to the ADF, Faye Driscoll and H. Art Chaos. In addition, a mini-festival of works by Israeli choreographers, reconstructed works by Laura Dean and Twyla Tharp, recent work by Miami-based Rosie Herrera, and two site-specific, community-based projects choreographed by long-time Festival participant Mark Dendy will complement the many dance-related opportunities available at the ADF this summer.

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The return of Festival favorites, the introduction of Festival newcomers, and a wide array of dance-related opportunities (many of them free!) await dance fans this summer in Durham, NC from June 11 – July 25, 2009. Work that was previously presented at Page Auditorium on the Duke University campus will now be presented at the beautiful new Durham Performing Arts Center in downtown Durham. Performances will also continue to be presented at Reynolds Industries Theater on the campus of Duke University, and this season at two additional locations in the Triangle community.

Shen Wei Dance Arts: Photo by Lois Greenfield

Shen Wei Dance Arts: Photo by Lois Greenfield

June 18-20
Shen Wei Dance Arts

The Festival’s 2009 repertory begins with the unforgettable choreography of Shen Wei and his company, Shen Wei Dance Arts. Known the world over for the stunning material he contributed to the 2008 Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremonies, Shen Wei’s Re- (I, II, III) is presented, for the very first time together, as the Festival’s inaugural performance in the beautiful new Durham Performing Arts Center. Shen Wei Dance Arts has garnered critical acclaim the world over. Inspired by various world cultures, geography, and an artist’s experiences abroad, Re- Part I, Re- Part II (originally set on Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal) and Re- Part III (an ADF commissioned World Premiere) explore the relationship between the individual and community and the difference between the role of the individual in Chinese and Western life. Since its inception at the ADF in 2000, Shen Wei Dance Arts has consistently presented work that is both thought provoking, deeply inspired, and exciting.

Emanuel Gat Dance: Photo by Mia Alon

Emanuel Gat Dance: Photo by Mia Alon

June 22-24
Emanuel Gat Dance

As modern dance continues to flourish internationally, the ADF will present a festival within the 2009 Festival featuring works by Israeli choreographers. Emanuel Gat blew audiences away with his version of The Rite of Spring in 2005 and K626 in 2006. This summer, Emanuel Gat Dance is back with an ADF commissioned World Premiere duet, Winter Variations. Emanuel Gat and Roy Assaf, who performed together in the award-winning Winter Voyage at the ADF in 2005, dance the work with extreme intimacy. Complemented with music by R. Strauss, Riad al Sunbati, and the Beatles, this duet will grace the Reynolds Industries Theater stage June 22 – 24.

Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet: Photo by Paul Goode

Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet: Photo by Paul Goode

Also a part of the Israeli Festival, Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet presents Israeli modern choreographer Ohad Naharin’s Decadance (2007) at three astonishing performances at the Durham Performing Arts Center June 25 – 27. The recipient of the 2009 Samuel H. Scripps/ADF $50,000 Award for Lifetime Achievement, Ohad Naharin is a trailblazing choreographer whose 2007 work pieces together two decades of choreography into an explosive masterpiece. Mr. Naharin will be honored at a pre-performance ceremony on June 25, 2009.

H. Art Chaos: Photos by Etsuko Matsuyama

H. Art Chaos: Photos by Etsuko Matsuyama

June 29 – July 1
H. Art Chaos

H. Art Chaos, one of Japan’s top dance companies, arrives in Durham for the first time with their much talked about work The Rite of Spring (1995) for performances June 29 – July 1 at Reynolds Industries Theater. Paired with the adventurous sounds of Igor Stravinsky, this intensely physical piece, complete with aerial feats, has been performed all over the world to critical acclaim. In addition, H. Art Chaos will collaborate with musician Alan Terricciano and ADF dancers while in residence to bring Festival goers an ADF commissioned World Premiere. Also of note, H. Art Chaos’ choreographer Sakiko Oshima was a participant in ADF’s 1996 International Choreographer’s Residency Program.

Icons of the dance world unite in Aspen Santa Fe Ballet’s 2009 program at the Festival from July 2 – 4 at the Durham Performing Arts Center. ASFB once again bridges the gap between ballet and modern dance. A rarely seen gem, the reconstruction of Sue’s Leg (1975) by Twyla Tharp is one of her most legendary, most complex, and multi-layered modern works. Also on the program, an ADF reconstruction of Laura Dean’s Night (1980) skillfully incorporates traditional ballet steps with the hallmarks of her legendary works – Dean’s own music and geometric patterns. William Forsythe’s Slingerland Pas de Deux (2000) will complete the ASFB program.


Pilobolus: Photo by ADF/Gregory Georges 2007

Pilobolus, Salt Cellar: Photo by John Kane

Pilobolus, Salt Cellar: Photo by John Kane

July 9 – 11

From July 9 – 11, perennial Festival favorite  will present an ADF commissioned World Premiere by Jonathan Wolken entitled Redline and an exciting new work (also an ADF commission) by Israeli choreographers Avshalom Pollak and Inbal Pinto. Back by popular demand is Pilobolus’ first collaboration with Pollak and Pinto, the 2007 ADF commissioned Rushes, a display of striking choreography complete with dancing chairs, which promises to be just as thrilling as its first incarnation at the ADF a couple of seasons ago. Rounding out the evening, Ocellus (1971) is a classic men’s quartet sure to evoke breathtaking memories of the company’s origins, and Walklyndon (1971), a colorful vaudeville romp that is pure Pilobolus to the core. All Pilobolus performances will occur at the Durham Performing Arts Center.

Doug Elkins and friends, photo by Steven Schreiber

Doug Elkins and friends, photo by Steven Schreiber

July 13 – 15
Doug Elkins and Friends

New to the ADF, New York City’s Doug Elkins and Friends presents their award-winning Fräulein Maria July 13 – 15 at Reynolds Industries Theater. A stimulating new take on Rodgers & Hammerstein’s The Sound of Music, Elkins uses classic vaudeville gags, modern social dance moves, and references to modern dance icons – Balanchine, José Limón, Paul Taylor, and Martha Graham among them – with unmatchable wit and skill. Classic tunes such as “Do-Re-Mi” and “The Lonely Goatherd” will never sound the same again.

July 16 – 18
Paul Taylor Dance Company

Paul Taylor Dance Company will present three of Taylor’s most remarkable works at the Durham Performing Arts Center from July 16 – 18. One of his most recent, Beloved Renegade (2008) is inspired by the poems of Walt Whitman. Set to the music of Francis Poulenc’s “Gloria”, this deeply moving piece celebrates America’s wounded beauty. Also on the program and a major revival, Mercuric Tidings (1982) is a supreme example of true dance – athletic in nature and fast in pace. A rarely seen gem and a work that originally premiered at the ADF, Scudorama (1963) completes a program that spans over forty-five years of Taylor’s most memorable chorography.



July 20 – 22
Reconstructions and new works • Past/Forward

Reconstructions and new works will again appear on the same program as Past/Forward takes place at Reynolds Industries Theater from July 20 – 22. Rodger Belman, a former member of Laura Dean Musicians and Dancers, will be back to reconstruct Dean’s Infinity (1980). New York-based choreographer and former ADF School scholarship student Faye Driscoll, will present an ADF commissioned World Premiere. Often hysterical and under-the-skin, Driscoll’s rigorous dance pieces edge into the realm of theater. Rounding out the Past/Forward program, Miami-based choreographer Rosie Herrera will present her surrealistic Various Stages of Drowning: A Cabaret (2009). ADF dancers will perform all three Past/Forward works.

The Festival comes to a close with a program by the Mark Morris Dance Group. A Festival favorite, Morris is one of the dance world’s most accomplished choreographers who has set works on both ballet and modern dance companies throughout his storied career. The Mark Morris Dance Group regularly performs across the United States, at major international festivals, and is also noted for its commitment to live music. Works on the Festival program include Peccadillos (2000), Excursions (2008), Going Away Party (1990), A Lake (1991), and Candleflowerdance (2005). The program features a wide range of Morris’ musical choices, from Satie to Stravinsky.

OTHER PERFORMANCES/EVENTS OF NOTE: A Tribute to Dr. Gerald E. Myers, late Philosopher-In-Residence at the ADF, will take place on Saturday, June 27 at 1:00pm in Baldwin Auditorium. The ADF Faculty Concert (July 6 – 7 at Reynolds Industries Theater) and ADF Musicians Concert (July 8 at Baldwin Auditorium) showcase the work and craft of the renowned ADF School musicians and celebrated faculty. On July 24 – 25 at Reynolds Industries Theater, the Hollins University/American Dance Festival MFA Performance will take place presenting year-long creative thesis projects and new works.

2009 AWARDS: The 2009 Samuel H. Scripps/ADF Award for Lifetime Achievement and its $50,000 prize will be awarded to Israeli choreographer and performer Ohad Naharin at a pre-performance ceremony on June 25.

The Balasaraswati/Joy Ann Dewey Beinecke Endowed Chair for Distinguished Teaching Award will be presented jointly to Carolyn Adams, Ruth Andrien, and Sharon Kinney at a special ceremony on June 26 in Griffith Theater.

EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS: The NEA Arts Journalism Institute for Dance Criticism (June 20 – July 11), directed by dance historian and critic Suzanne Carrbonneau, offers fellowships for professional journalists to strengthen their dance writing and criticism skills. The Hollins University/American Dance

Festival MFA Degree Program in Dance, established in 2005, is designed for students to study both at the ADF and at Hollins University. In addition, the ADF inaugurated two additional educational programs with Hollins last season. As students complete their undergraduate degrees and prepare for a professional career in dance or graduate study, the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate (PBC) offers a year of time, support, and networking. The BA/BFA degree program in dance is the first of its kind in the country. Students are enrolled at both Hollins and the ADF to graduate with a combined BA/BFA in dance. Each summer, over 400 students attend the Six Week and Four Week Schools at the ADF where they work and create alongside leaders in the dance field. In addition, the ADF offers Internships in various areas of arts administration and production, as well as full and partial Scholarships. ADF’s Dean Donna Faye Burchfield directs all Educational Programs.

DANCE IN OTHER MEDIUMS: The ADF will host the 14th annual Dancing for the Camera:
International Festival of Film and Video Dance from July 10 – 12. Directed and curated by Douglas Rosenberg, the Festival explores the relationship between film and dance and boasts over 300 past screenings. Out of Focus, an intensely candid documentary of the life and work of 2009 Samuel H. Scripps/ADF Award recipient Ohad Naharin, will be shown on Wednesday, June 24 at 8:00pm. The screening will take place in White Lecture Hall on the Duke University campus and will be free and open to the public.

NEW FOR AUDIENCES IN 2009: Dance and theater artist Mark Dendy brings the ADF community an online video project this summer. May we have this Cyber Dance? will highlight the diversity of events taking place during the Festival via daily online coverage of ADF classes, rehearsals, and performances, as well as interviews with artists, students, and community members on various dance-related topics. New  postings will occur each day on the ADF website. Pre-Performance Talks will occur before every* evening performance and back again, Post Performance Discussions (PPDs) will take place with the artists after selected evening performances. Dance historian and critic, Suzanne Carbonneau, will moderate all Pre-Performance Talks and Post Performance Discussions. *except Shen Wei Dance Arts performances

ADF IN THE COMMUNITY: Hosted at the Nasher Museum of Art, ADF Community Day is back for the 2009 Festival on Saturday, July 11 from 2:00-4:30pm. From dance classes for kids to face painting and puppets, Community Day offers fun for all ages. ADF Project Dance exposes youth from the local community to dance and performance, and ADF Community Tours enable Festival visitors the ability to go behind the scenes – both at no cost. Immersed in the community, longtime Festival participant Mark Dendy will choreograph two Site-Specific Works at the ADF this summer. The first will begin at 7:00pm at the Durham Performing Arts Center on June 18 – 20 immediately prior to the performances of Shen Wei Dance Arts. The second will occur at the Golden Belt in Downtown Durham on July 17 – 18 (7:00pm & 2:00pm, respectively). Both presentations will be free and open to the public.

ADF ARCHIVES & EXHIBITS: In collaboration with Duke University’s library system, the ADF Archival Collection houses a multitude of film, videos, photographs, and records dating from the early 1930s. The 2009 visual exhibit in the lobby of Reynolds Industries Theater at Duke University will highlight the life and work of the late Dr. Gerald E. Myers. Also this summer, the ADF will launch an online exhibit of its extensive history, featuring photographs, video clips, and other items from ADF Archives, which will serve as an invaluable resource to our international community.

FOR THE KIDS: In the midst of a summer Festival bursting at the seams, the ADF hosts three one-hour matinees specifically for children. The 2009 Children’s Matinees will occur at the Durham Performing Arts Center at 1:00pm on June 27 (Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet), July 4 (Aspen Santa Fe Ballet), and July 11 (Pilobolus). Additionally, the ADF continues its Kids Night Out program where area youth aged 6-16 receive one complimentary ticket to any evening performance when accompanied by an adult purchasing a regular-priced ticket.

DANCE ON A DIME IN 2009: In light of the state of the world’s economy, the ADF is proud to highlight several opportunities to save while still enjoying the performances and programs of this world-renowned Festival. The ADF offers a 30% discount on Subscriptions to 4 or more performances. Groups of 10 or more save 20% and Seniors receive a $3/ticket discount on regular-priced tickets. Area students may take advantage of the ADF Student Rush program and save 50%. New to the Festival this year, a limited number of $20 Tickets will be available at every Durham Performing Arts Center performance. Various other Additional Discounts are available – please visit the ADF website for more information.

TICKET INFORMATION: Single tickets to ADF performances go on sale on May 11, 2009.

Tickets range in price from $20 – $41* and may be purchased via one of the methods listed below.

By Phone


In Person

The American Tobacco District
123 Vivian St.
Durham, NC 27701

*Please note that all performances taking place at the Durham Performing Arts Center include a mandatory $2/ticket City of Durham facility fee added to the ticket price.

**Tickets available for purchase on or after May 11, 2009 at this location.

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