The Durham Performing Arts Center will present Michael Flatley’s world-renowned Irish dance extravaganza, Lord of the Dance, at 7 p.m. on Sunday, March 10th, in its 2,700-seat, state-of-the-art theater in the American Tobacco District in downtown Durham, NC.
“Sixteen years ago, Lord of the Dance, created by Michael Flatley (http://www.lordofthedance.com/) launched; today, it is selling out arenas and theaters as the world’s highest-grossing Irish dance show. Generations of audiences — more than 60 million people from 68 countries — have seen Lord of the Dance[, p]resented by MagicSpace Entertainment and Global Entertainment Group ….
“Speaking about the show’s updates, Flatley says, ‘We have fresh wardrobes and an exciting new set featuring elements from the successful international tour I performed in last year -– we sold out more than 20 dates in the U.K. Fans will see technological highlights like video incorporated into an LED wall, as well as a number of changes to the overall lighting and set designs.’
“Flatley, who retired from dancing in 2011, is artistic director of Lord of the Dance and oversees all aspects of the production.
“‘We are really excited to introduce our fans to the new visual experience that compliments our show[,’ he said.] Flatley added that new interest in dancing sparked by primetime shows like ‘Dancing with the Stars’ has fans anxious to see more Lord of the Dance-style shows. Flatley was a special guest on ‘Dancing with the Stars’ in the seventh season, and performed on the show in 2007 and 2008.
“A 2012 Valentine’s Day tour launch [was] merely coincidence, but [was] fitting since an integral part of the show is a love story between the two main characters.
“Lord of the Dance is a classic tale of good versus evil, based on Irish folklore that brings a romantic and passionate love story to life,’ says Flatley. The story is based upon mythical Irish folklore as Don Dorcha, Lord of Darkness, challenges the ethereal lord of light, the Lord of the Dance.
“‘Battle lines are drawn, passions ignite and a love story fueled by the dramatic leaps and turns of dancers’ bodies begins to build against a backdrop of Celtic rhythm,’ says Flatley. ‘Fans can expect 21 scenes of precision dancing, dramatic music, new colorful wardrobes, and state-of-the-art staging and lighting.’
“Along with dance director Marie Duffy-Pask, [Michael] Flatley hand-picks the cast of over 40 dancers; each has achieved individual recognition as a national or worldwide dance champion.
“Lee Marshall, CEO of MagicSpace Entertainment, the tour promoter and veteran of blockbuster entertainment events, agrees[:] ‘These championship dancers have captivated a new generation of fans, and manage the impossible every night. Their collective spirit and energy takes the audience to a time and place that is as imaginative as it is inviting.’
“Flatley [initially] conceptualized and staged the show in a mere 16 weeks [in 1996], but also paid particular attention to the costumes, lighting and staging — which are cinematic in scope.
“‘Irish dance lovers and music fans alike will experience the engaging, rhythmic adventures that has helped catapult Celtic dance mania and Irish dancing into the global spotlight,’ says Flatley. No wonder Lord of the Dance ticket sales exceed more than $800 million worldwide.
“Described by the New York Post as ‘fascinating, rewarding and above all, entertaining,’ and by the Los Angeles Times as ‘a showpiece extravaganza,’ Lord of the Dance is a mesmerizing blend of traditional and modern Celtic music and dance.
TICKETS: $43.75-$84.75 (including fees).
Ticketmaster: 800-745-3000 or http://www.ticketmaster.com/venueartist/115558/1046393.
Lord of the Dance (background): http://www.lordofthedance.com/ (official website) and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lord_of_the_Dance_%28musical%29 (Wikipedia).
MagicSpace Entertainment: http://www.magicspace.net/ (official website).
Global Entertainment Group: http://www.globallv.com/ (official website).
Robert W. McDowell is editor and publisher of Triangle Review, a FREE weekly e-mail arts newsletter. This Preview is reprinted with permission from Triangle Review.
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