First U.S. Company in South Africa’s JOMBA! Festival, Generations Launches in U.S.
CHICAGO—Deeply Rooted Dance Theater (DRDT), which creates world-class dance inspired by the African Diaspora in a community dedicated to nurturing artists, supporting human relationships and sharing common values through engaging in dance, announces its 2013 season. Highlights include representing the U.S. at a major contemporary dance festival in South Africa in September and launching Generations, a multigenerational repertory project premiering at the Harris Theater for Music and Dance in Millennium Park in Chicago November 1.
JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience—Aug. 28–Sept. 8, Durban, South Africa
DRDT is the first American company to participate in JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience, an international festival in its 15th year in Durban, South Africa, a Chicago Sister City. JOMBA! is presented by the Centre for Creative Arts (University of KwaZulu-Natal) August 28–September 8. During its 10-day residency, DRDT will present two performances, one a collaboration with Durban’s Flatfoot Dance Company, and participate in workshops and community-based outreach to rural and urban townships involving nearly 700 young people in Durban.
“Deeply Rooted is honored to be the first U.S. company in this festival, which I find especially appealing due to its combination of contemporary and traditional African dance,” said DRDT Artistic Director/Co-Founder Kevin Iega Jeff. “I’m also looking forward to working with Flatfoot, which, like Deeply Rooted, is committed to using dance as a medium to engage in constructive social change.”
Generations—Nov. 1, Harris Theater, Chicago
On November 1, DRDT will kick off Generations, a five-year multigenerational repertory project featuring classic and new works by emerging, established and legendary choreographers, with a performance at the Harris Theater in Millennium Park, Chicago.
Generations will highlight the company’s unique style and influence on contemporary dance inspired by the African Diaspora. Through the work of artists who have been part of the company’s continuum, Generations underscores the company’s impact on dance in Chicago and abroad. These artists include emerging choreographers discovering their voices through experimentation, mentored by more experienced artistic leaders; established choreographers who have gained recognition and acclaim for their work with national and international dance companies; and legendary choreographers who have created a body of groundbreaking work and, as master teachers and choreographers, have trained and inspired others as well.
The November 1 program features the world premiere of Hadiyaby emerging choreographer Nicole Clarke-Springer and repertory by established choreographers, including the Chicago and DRDT premiere of Conversationsby Jeff; Bach’d(2011) by DRDT Associate Artistic Director/Co-Founder Gary Abbott; and Ferrotype(2006) by Jeff and Abbott.
Following the Chicago debut, Generations will travel to New York City for performances in the James and Martha Duffy Performance Space at the Mark Morris Dance Center November 15–17.
Summer Dance Intensive—June 24–July 20
Deeply Rooted’s Summer Dance Intensive offers technical rigor and artistic development within disciplines of dance. During the four weeks, participants engage in a strong curriculum fostering learning and personal growth, along with opportunities to experience the company’s repertory through forums, workshops and performance. Curriculum includes classes based in Horton, Graham, Ballet, Traditional African Dance, Dunham, Contemporary Movement and Pilates, with Master Classes in Hip Hop. The faculty includes Kirov-trained ballet instructor Madame Gabriela Darvash, artistic director and resident choreographer for the State Opera Ballet in Cluj, Romania for 14 years, who Mikhail Baryshnikov called “one of the distinguished and finest ballet pedagogues in America,” and internationally respected choreographer/teacher/performer Lee Aca Thompson, who provides expertise in the Pyragrammic approach to African dance techniques, based in ancient Kemetic principles.
The Summer Dance Intensive concludes with performances July 19 and 20 at The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago.
Deeply Rooted Dance Theater
The mission of Deeply Rooted Dance Theater, founded in 1995, is to re-imagine and diversify the aesthetics of contemporary dance by bringing together modern, classical and African-American traditions in dance. In its uncompromising pursuit of excellence in performance, the development of new choreography, the training of dancers and the creation of a diverse audience, the company seeks to demonstrate how art and beauty play a transformative role in society.
Deeply Rooted programs are supported by the Alphawood Foundation, City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation, Irving Harris Fund, Lake Shore Chapter of the Links Inc., Richard H. Driehaus Foundation and Deeply Rooted’s Family of Friends. Deeply Rooted programs are partially supported by the Illinois Arts Council, a stage agency.