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Mary Anthony, Choreographer and Teacher of Modern Dance, Dies at 97….

MAnthonyMA14052651-0006Mary Anthony, recognized as one of the leaders of the modern dance movement as well as a national treasure and legend of modern dance, died in her studio home in the East Village in New York City on May 31, 2014 at the age of 97.  Former company member, Daniel Maloney who is the Artistic Director of the Mary Anthony Dance Theater Foundation, was like a son to her and took care of her to the end. Among her students were Donald McKayle, the modern-dance choreographer, and Arthur Mitchell, the New York City Ballet star and co-founder of Dance Theater of Harlem.

Others who studied and performed with her include Ronald K. Brown and Elisa Monte, as well Ulysses Dove and former major dancers in the Martha Graham company like Yuriko Kimura, Ross Parkes, Daniel Maloney (all close associates of Ms. Anthony in her own troupe), Richard Kuch and Steve Rooks.

Mary Anthony, a native of Kentucky, began her career with a scholarship in dance with Hanya Holm in the early 40’s, eventually joining the Holm Company and becoming her assistant. She was an original member of the radical modern dance organization The New Dance Group in the 1940’s. Ms. Anthony danced in concerts with Joseph Gifford as well as appearing in many Broadway Shows. Her staging of the London production of Touch and Go, in which she danced one of the leading roles, resulted in a long association as choreographer for Italian Musical Theater.

Mary Anthony

Mary Anthony

Ms. Anthony started the Mary Anthony Dance Theater in 1956. Following the premier of Ms. Anthony’s signature work Threnody – for which composer, Benjamin Britten gave his special permission to use his Sinfonia da Requiem – Louis Horst wrote, “Here is the most beautiful and complete dance composition this observer has seen.” Her company performed throughout the United States for over 40 years, including appearances at Jacob’s Pillow, The American Dance Festival, the Berkshire Music Festival at Tanglewood and toured as part of the Dance Touring Program of the National Endowment for the Arts, and for over 30 years presented home season performance in New York City. Jennifer Dunning of the New York Times described Ms. Anthony’s Songs as “hauntingly lyrical with the emphasis on simplicity and ageless craft.” In 1996, Mary Anthony Dance Theater celebrated its 40th Anniversary seasons at The Sylvia and Danny Kaye Playhouse in New York City. In 2004 Ms. Anthony reconstructed one of her oldest works, Women of Troy, on Dancefusion, which was presented in Philadelphia along with her legendary solos Lady Macbeth danced by Mary Ford Sussman. In 2009 her work The Devil in Massachusetts from 1952 was reconstructed by the 360º Dance Company.

An internationally recognized choreographer, Ms. Anthony has had her works added to the repertory of Pennsylvania Ballet, Bat-Dor Company of Israel, the Dublin City Ballet, Dancefusion in Philadelphia and the National Institute for the Arts of Taiwan. Ms. Anthony taught at the Herbert Berghof Studio for Actors in New York City for many years.  She taught at her own studio at 736 Broadway for over 50 years, retiring only last year.   In November 2013 a Tribute to Mary Anthony was presented as part of Fridays At Noon at the 92nd Street Y, honoring her legacy in modern dance and her 97th Birthday.

Mary Anthony has been an extraordinary presents in the dance community and the artistry and depth of her choreography is timeless. She will live on through the dancers she trained and the people who loved her. Andrea Pastorella, one of her long-time students stated the following, “Mary continued to teach, she never lost her “Eagle Eye” even when the right eye failed she never missed a blink. She would only give a compliment if she really meant it. Her honesty was relentless. One of the things that she loved most was teaching her choreography workshops which culminated twice a year at her studio with performances. She used to say: ‘These shows are what I live for’!”

Ms. Anthony was the 2004 recipient of the Bessie Award for lifetime contribution to the field of modern dance. In 2006 she received the Martha Hill Award. Other awards and honors include: Joy Ann Dewey Beinecke’s Balasaraswati Award from American Dance Festival, American Dance Guild Award of Artistry, American Dance Association Award, New York State Dance Education Award, and Channel One New Yorker of the week. In 2004 she was entered into the Dance Hall of Fame as part of an installation for the New Dance Group at the Saratoga Dance Museum and in 2011 she received a Citation from New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer at her 95th birthday, declaring November 11 as Mary Anthony Day.

Donations in Mary Anthony’s memory can be made to the Mary Anthony Dance Theater Foundation and sent to 736 Broadway, New York NY 10003.

Alicia Amatriain & Jason Reilly in Itzik Galili’s “Mona Lisa”….

MONA LISA

Choreography: Itzik Galili

Musical concept & composition: Thomas Höfs with Itzik Galili

Costumes: Natasja Lansen

World premiere: February 22, 2003, Stuttgart Ballet

Dancers: Alicia Amatriain & Jason Reilly

Celebrate Summer with Martha Graham!

Xiaochuan Xie in Martha Graham's Diversion of Angels.  Photo by Hibbard Nash Photography.

Xiaochuan Xie in Martha Graham’s Diversion of Angels.
Photo by Hibbard Nash Photography.

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO…

Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Presents the 13th Annual River To River Festival, June 19–29…

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RIVER TO RIVER 2014 FULL SCHEDULE:

Dates, times and locations subject to change—be sure to check www.RiverToRiverNYC.com for up-to-date information. Please note that all events are free, but due to limited capacity some require advance RSVPs.

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R2R BASH

June 19, 5–8pm

North End Way

Co-sponsored with Conrad New York, Goldman Sachs, and area restaurants & retailers

Food, Music, Social

TRISHA BROWN DANCE COMPANY

Exhibition: Embodied Practice & Site Specificity

June 20–29: Mon–Fri 12–5pm, Sat 10am–5pm, Sun 12–5pm

LMCC’s Arts Center at Governors Island

Visual Arts, Dance, Theatre, Music, New Media

CARABALLO-FARMAN

The Signs of Paradise

June 20–29, 8am–8pm

Battery Park

Visual Arts

Two Women is an experimental performance which focuses on two women's age difference and multi-layered relationship. The collaborators explore how two bodies sometimes mirror each other in part or collide into one. Tomoe Aihara, a dancer and scholar from Tokyo, where she lives, joins Eiko. Photo: William Johnston

Two Women is an experimental performance which focuses on two women’s age difference and multi-layered relationship with Tomoe Aihara, a dancer and scholar from Tokyo, where she lives, joins Eiko. Photo: William Johnston

EIKO

Two Women

June 20 & 22, 2pm

LMCC’s Arts Center at Governors Island

Dance

ORIGINAL MUSIC WORKSHOP’S EX-SITU SERIES

Terry Riley & Friends

June 20 at 7:30pm

Federal Hall

Music

VANESSA ANSPAUGH

What Was Wasn’t Here.

June 20 at 3pm

June 21 at 1pm & 3pm

Location TBA

Governors Island, Nolan Park

Dance

PETE M. WYER

And Death Shall Have No Dominion

June 21 at 11am

Various starting locations see website for details

Co-presented by Make Music New York and Poets House

Music, New Media

SUSIE IBARRA & ROBERTO RODRIGUEZ

Digital Sanctuaries, NYC

June 21 at 1pm, 3pm, 5pm

Starting Locations: India House (1pm); Peter Minuet Plaza (3pm); Tear Drop Park (5pm)

Commissioned by New Music USA’s Commissioning Music/USA program and presented as part of Make Music New York

RSVP required

Music, New Media

STRIJBOS & VAN RIJSWIJK

New York Walkscape

June 21 at 12pm, 2pm & 4pm

Various locations, see website for details

Co-presented by Make Music New York

Music, New Media

Photo; Marc Perlish

Photo; Marc Perlish

ORIGINAL MUSIC WORKSHOP’S EX-SITU SERIES

Claire Chase & Svet Stoyanov

June 21 at 7:30pm

Federal Hall

Music, Visual Arts

R2R LIVING ROOM

Ephrat Asherie & Hector Arce-Espasas: Everyday I’m Hustlin’

June 21, 9–11pm

Nelson Blue, 233 Front Street

Music, Dance

TRISHA BROWN DANCE COMPANY

In Conversation: Embodied Practice & Site-Specificity

June 22 at 4:30pm

LMCC’s Arts Center at Governors Island

Talks, Visual Arts, Dance, Theatre, Music, New Media

ENRICO D WEY

Where We Are Right Now

June 22 at 7pm & 8pm

June 24 at 7:30pm

Pier 15

Dance

TERE O’CONNOR

Untitled

June 23–25 at 1pm

Elevated Acre

Commissioned by LMCC

Dance

COLLABORATIONTOWN IN DEVELOPMENT:

Staged Reading of New Work

June 23 & 26 at 2pm

June 24 at 5pm

LMCC’s studios at One Liberty Plaza, 12th Floor

RSVP required

Theatre, Open Studios

AYA OGAWA

Ludic Proxy

June 23 at 5pm, June 25 at 2pm, June 27 at 4pm

LMCC’s studios at One Liberty Plaza, 12th floor

RSVP required

Theatre, Open Studios

ORIGINAL MUSIC WORKSHOP’S EX-SITU SERIES

Kimmo Pohjonen & Jeffrey Zeigler

June 23 at 7pm

Pier 15

Music

SOULEYMANE BADOLO  , Of History (Virgule De L’histoire)

SOULEYMANE BADOLO , Of History (Virgule De L’histoire)

SOULEYMANE BADOLO

, Of History (Virgule De L’histoire)

June 24 at 3pm

June 25 at 1pm & 5pm

John Street Church Courtyard

Commissioned by LMCC

 Dance

NIGHT AT THE MUSEUMS

June 24, 4–8pm

Various Locations, see website for details

Visual Arts

ETHEL WITH SPECIAL GUEST KAKI KING

…And Other Stories

June 24 at 7:30pm

Brookfield Place, Winter Garden

Co-presented by Arts Brookfield

Music

TRISHA BROWN DANCE COMPANY

I’m Going to Toss My Arms—If You Catch Them They’re Yours

Open Rehearsal: June 25 at 7pm

Performance: June 26 at 7pm

Pier 15

Dance

REGGIE WILSON…

Moses(Es)

June 25 at 2:45pm

June 26 at 1:45pm & 3:45pm

St. Cornelius Chapel, Governors Island

Co-commissioned by New England Foundations for the Arts’ National Dance Project, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation & LMCC

Dance

R2R LIVING ROOM

Mike Iveson/Dj Hotel Scampi

June 25, 9–11pm

Barbalu, 227 Front Street

Music, Dance

THE 22ND ANNUAL POETS HOUSE SHOWCASE OPENING

June 26, 5:30–8:30pm

Poets House

Co-presented by Poets House

Writing/Literature

Photo credit: courtesy of the artist

Photo credit: courtesy of the artist

WALLY CARDONA & JENNIFER LACEY

The Set Up: I Nyoman Catra

June 26 at 5pm

June 27 & 28 at 1pm

120 Wall Street

Commissioned by LMCC

Dance

PIÑATA PROTEST, KUENTA I TAMBU (KIT), HELADO NEGRO & SLV FRONTERAS:

New & Old Sounds from Latin America & the Caribbean

June 27, 4–9:30pm

The Uplands, South Street Seaport

Co-presented by Isabel Soffer / Live Sounds

Music

MariaHassabi_Premiere_2013-11-06

MARIA HASSABI Premiere

MARIA HASSABI

Premiere

June 27 at 3pm

June 28 at 3pm & 5pm

Bowling Green

Commissioned by LMCC

Dance

MARIA HASSABI, PAOLO JAVIER & KANEZA SCHAAL

In Conversation

June 27, 7–9:00pm

Poets House

Co-presented by Baryshnikov Arts Center & Poets House

Talks, Dance, Poetry, Theatre

Photo: Darial Sneed

Photo: Darial Sneed

OPEN STUDIOS WITH LMCC’S ARTISTS IN RESIDENCE

June 28–29, 12–5pm

LMCC’s Arts Center at Governors Island

Visual Arts, Dance, Theatre, Music, New Media

ROBERT KOCIK & DARIA FAIN:

Ubiquitous Dividend: A Day-Long Celebration Of Robert Kocik’s Supple Science

June 28, 2–5pm (workshop), 6–8pm (performance)

Poets House

Co-presented by Poets House

Performing Arts, Social Practice

OKWUI OKPOKWASILI

Bronx Gothic: The Oval

June 28 & 29 at 3pm

LMCC’s Arts Center at Governors Island

Co-commissioned by Danspace Project, LMCC, & Performance Space

Performance Art, Dance, Theatre

Photo: Courtesy of the Artist

Photo: Courtesy of the Artist

BÉLO & CURUPIRA FRONTERAS:

New & Old Sounds from Latin America & the Caribbean

June 28, 5:30–9pm

The Uplands, South Street Seaport

Co-presented by Isabel Soffer / Live Sounds

Music

SERGIO MENDOZA Y LA ORKESTA & REY VALLENATO BETO JAMAICAFRONTERAS:

New & Old Sounds from Latin America & the Caribbean

June 29, 1:30–5pm

The Uplands, South Street Seaport

Co-presented by Isabel Soffer / Live Sounds

Music

ON VIDEO:

New York Close-Up

June 29 at 4:30pm

LMCC’s Arts Center at Governors Island

Visual Arts, Dance, Theatre, Music, New Media

Photo credit: courtesy of the artist

Photo credit: courtesy of the artist

DJ NICKODEMUS

SEAPORT BLOCK PARTY

June 29, 6–8pm

Front Street, South Street Seaport

Music, Dance

R2R LIVING ROOM

Closing Party

June 29, 8:30–11pm

Nelson Blue, 233 Front Street

Music, Dance

ABOUT LOWER MANHATTAN CULTURAL COUNCIL (LMCC)

Lower Manhattan Cultural Council (LMCC) empowers artists by providing them with networks, resources, and support, to create vibrant, sustainable communities in Lower Manhattan and beyond. In 2014, LMCC will award over $500,000 in grants, provide 500 individuals with professional development skills and access to business leaders and arts professionals, place 100 individuals and arts groups in our studio residency programs, as well as present over 60 days of free cultural experiences for the public to enjoy. The combination of LMCC’s investment in individual artists and small arts groups, our robust network of partners in the public and private sectors, and our integrated approach to fostering local neighborhood efforts, aims to spark public imagination as well as inspire personal attachment and investment in NYC’s communities.

 

24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog | MalPaso Dance Company’s United States Premiere at the Joyce….

Isvel Bello Rodriguez, Randy Civico Rivas, Joan Rodriguez Hernandez & Manuel Ernesto Duran Calzado in Osnel Delgado’s 24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog). Photo: Roberto Leon

Isvel Bello Rodriguez, Randy Civico Rivas, Joan Rodriguez Hernandez & Manuel Ernesto Duran Calzado in Osnel Delgado’s 24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog). Photo: Roberto Leon

The United States premiere for MalPaso Dance Company, as well as their first appearance outside of Cuba, was at the Joyce Theater. The MalPaso Dance Company was founded two years ago by Osnel Delgado and Daile Carrazana Gonzalez, both former members of Danza Contemporánea de Cuba.

The evening opened with 24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog), a 44 minute piece choreographed by  the artistic director Osnel Delgado. An added benefit, so sadly missing in so many NYC dance performances was that the score by Grammy Award-winning pianist and composer Arturo O’Farrill , was performed live.

Osnel Delgado & Dunia Acosta Arias in Osnel Delgado’s 24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog). Photo: Roberto Leon

Osnel Delgado & Dunia Acosta Arias in Osnel Delgado’s 24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog). Photo: Roberto Leon

The movement for 24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog) is so relaxed, so intrinsic to the body that it appears improvisational. Something the dancers just whipped out of their body without forethought, allowing themselves to become conduits of expression that listens to the body’s natural rhythms, breath, pulse, heartbeat.

You immediately get the urban feel both from Mr. O’Farrill’s score, a fusion of the Latin culture with jazz, plus with the backdrop of city a skyline, on black but outlined with yellow. The work begins with Mr. Delgado moving slowly, almost contemplative in salience. When music is heard he begins to move fully, from standing he goes to the knees then back to standing then rolling, tumbling.

Four others join him on stage, a couple takes center stage and begins a duet that has an anger, not outright hostility but as if something needs resolving, an energy, strained, seems to run under their skin.

Dancers walk on and off the stage consistently during the piece. Groups work together in chorus, then it becomes a canon of movement that breaks into solos and duets. The work is abstract in form and the movement is original to its core.

It’s as if Mr. Delgado went into the studio and just started dancing. Technique is there, in fact all the dancers are impeccable trained, but the dancing does not rely on technique, the proper placement of an arm or leg in accordance with classical vocabulary. It is something much more free, technique is not so much thrown away nor is it deconstructed, but rather its rules and regulations have been discarded, stripped away, leaving pure movement that is pure expression.

Manuel Ernesto Duran Calzado, Joan Rodriguez Hernandez, Osnel Delgado, Maria Karla Araujo Martinez &  Dunia Acosta Arias in Osnel Delgado’s 24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog). Photo: Roberto Leon

Manuel Ernesto Duran Calzado, Joan Rodriguez Hernandez, Osnel Delgado, Maria Karla Araujo Martinez & Dunia Acosta Arias in Osnel Delgado’s 24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog). Photo: Roberto Leon

Men and women are equal in partnering; an established camaraderie exists that shows the women are as strong as the men, physical and emotional equals, neither is reliant on the other but accepts and appreciates the others presence.

Small movements escalate into larger movements rapidly. Using both hands the dancers turn the head to their right as they release the head it turns back to front, shoulders scrunch and arms are raised to shoulder level, this is followed through by fuller body movement. This type of phrasing and variations of it run through the dance like a weave, the beginning threads of a tapestry of movement.

Taimy Miranda Ruiz de Villa in Osnel Delgado’s 24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog). Photo: Roberto Leon

Taimy Miranda Ruiz de Villa in Osnel Delgado’s 24 Horas Y Un Perro (24 Hours and a Dog). Photo: Roberto Leon

Individuality is expressed as a dancer steps from the group to establish a separate phrase of movement then that being done by the  other dancers. He then rejoins the group and two more dancers step out, then three and back to one. But is more than just an expression of individuality being stated, but also an expression of freedom, an expression of strength, a certain fearlessness noted.

After witnessing MalPaso Dance Company I have to call into question the United States embargo against Cuba (known in Cuba as el bloqueo), who has it affected the most. The people of Cuba who are denied access to the United States and the many trade sanctions imposed…or is it the United States, for we are denied the access and possible influence of the rich Cuban culture, a culture just 90 miles of Florida’s shore….

Osnel Delgado has received major Cuban awards including the Premio a Mejor Coreografia del Concurso Solamente Solos (Award for Best Solo Choreography), and a Special Mention award at the VII Iberomerican “Alicia Alonso” Choreography competition in Madrid. He was a member of Danza Contemporanea de Cuba from 2003 to 2011 and founded MalPaso Dance Company in 2013, where he currently serves as choreographer and artistic director.

Alvin Ailey Dance at Lincoln Center | June 11–22….

Ailey blastAiley Schedule

INFO & TICKETS

Roland Petit’s “Méditation from Thaïs” (La Méditation de Thaïs) with Mizuka Ueno & Matthew Golding….

Méditation from Thaïs (La Méditation de Thaïs)

Choreography: Roland Petit

Music: Jules Massent – Meditation from “Thais”

Dancers:

Mizuka Ueno

Matthew Golding

Chris Mason Johnson’s ‘Test’, with Choreography by Sidra Bell opens June 6, 2014….

Test-Poster-XL-001Chris Mason Johnson’s Test is an intriguing film that takes place in the dance world during the early years of the AIDS epidemic…so many dancers were losing weight and not knowing why, their energies levels diminishing slowly and watched for the reddish purple skin lesions….Gay Cancer it was called…

In 1985 the virus that causes AIDS was identified and the first blood test was available,t for when the test. When was announced to the public, that was terrifying…did you even want to know if you had the virus…what do you do if you do.…so many did not. For some ignorance was bliss…for those that were found to be positive…many wrapped themselves in shrouds of defeat…

The film takes place in San Francisco and centers on the lives of two male dancers, Frankie, portrayed by Scott Marlowe, the young wide-eyed ingénue who is facing the challenges of being an understudy in a modern dance company where he is taunted to “dance like a man” and Todd, portrayed by Matthew Risch, who is his polar opposite, he is the rough and tumble “butch” bad-boy, free-spirited, somewhat jaded who is again and again drawn to Frankie’s innocence.

Scott Marlowe as ‘Frankie” in Chris Mason Johnson’s Test

Scott Marlowe as ‘Frankie” in Chris Mason Johnson’s Test

Monogamy was as unnatural to most gay men of this era as would be a snowstorm in Florida on July 4th.  Some men stopped having sex, fear of the AIDS/HIV virus ruling their lives, while other gay men could not and/or did not want to stop; promiscuity was equivalent to freedom, something that was denied to gays and lesbians in the early 80’s.

The film portrays Frankie living a stark and predominantly solitary existence. He listens to music on his Sony Sports Walkman (…I had one just like it…), attends rehearsals and walks around San Francisco in his free time. There is an aura of innocence about him, a young man discovering himself, finding his own voice as an artist.

This is the story of his coming of age in a time when just coming out as Gay could be so traumatic. Frankie finds himself in a world where the wrong decision could mark the outcome of your life….the person you have sex with could be the person that unknowingly infects you with HIV.

As both writer and directory, Chris Mason Johnson explores the subject matter with intelligence and sensitivity as he shows us a brief glimpse in the lives of gay men that lived during that era. In 89 minutes, he takes you own a journey that is rewarding, upsetting and real. It’s a great film and a wonderful slice of Gay History brought to the big screen. He portrays the fear, just not from the Gay community, but from the Heterosexuals as well…fear of being infected by other’s sweat or drinking from the same glass as a gay man and a time when the question was…should Gays be quarantined as a whole from the rest of society….

But, it is the choreography used in this film that has me watching it again and again. Sidra Bell has stripped away her theatrics, no foggy atmosphere, no black dungeon costumes, no interchangeable genders…it is a Ms. Bell at her best. She strips away everything and delivers movement that is emotional, raw and innovative.

The smallest of gestures is developed, a shoulder role is used to initiate the arcing of an arm that is followed through with the whole body. Though Scott Marlowe’s character “Frankie” is chided to dance like a man…I found his dancing throughout the film masculine and possessed a passion that cannot be forced, it’s either there are it’s not. Scott Marlowe with his long, lean line moved with a sensual lyricism that made me want to see him on stage in real life. Mr. Marlowe dances with and is also now an Artistic Associate with San Francisco based LEVYdance.

The film opens June 6th, 2014…

Lydia Johnson 2014 Dance New York Season at the Ailey Citigroup Theater, June 4-7…

Lydia Johnson Dance

Guest Artist: Carlos Lopez

Ballet Mistress: Deborah Wingert

Dancers:

Anthony Bocconi, Lisa Borres, Laura Di Orio, Chazz Fenner-McBride, Blake Hennessy-York, Min-Seon Kim, Katie Martin-Lohiya, Daniel Pahl, Sarah Pon, Kerry Shea, Eric Williams Guest Artist: Carlos Lopez Ballet Mistress: Deborah Wingert

June 4-7, 7:30 PM

Ailey Citigroup Theater

405 West 55 Street

Tickets: $25; $15 for seniors/students

Reservations: www.smarttix.com or 212.868.4444

Marc-Antoine Locatelli’s “Nuance” with Lucas Boirat….

Nuance – Marc-Antoine Locatelli

Video made as part of a cross workshop “Tomorrow”

Dancer: Lucas Boirat

Music: “Ants” from edIT

Coproduced by Supermouche Productions

French director Marc-Antoine Locatelli’s “Nuance” is an engrossing performance-based project worth checking out. Backed by track “Ants” (edIT), dancer Lucas Boirat interacts with a mercurial light-based form that seems to be both a source of power and opposition. Although the project surely involved a fair bit of choreography, it feels playful and improvised. That’s a harder feat than it might appear.