Three professional dance companies are featured on successive Sundays in March for the annual Centenary Stage Company Dance Fest.
Beginning on Sunday, March 11, Moe-tion Dance Theater - known for their expression through movement - will kick off the annual Dance Fest. Then on Sunday, March 18, the XY Dance Project returns with their unique style that blends contemporary dance with the spiritual rhythms of African dance and the grace and peace of Tai Chi. Finally, Nimbus Dance Works will close out the annual festival on Sunday, March 25 with a retelling of the First Testament in a glam rock style, with music by the Brooklyn band Sky Pony.
Under the artistic direction of Maureen Glennon Clayton, Moe-tion Dance Theater will present Touched, a program of dance and monologues inspired by our emotional connections to touch, on Sunday, March 11 at 3 p.m. Included is the premiere of Broken Planes, a piece choreographed by Maureen Glennon Clayton in collaboration with her dancers that features original music by Glen Fittin with violin arrangments by Sana Nagano. The piece explores touch, sound and the planes of motion in which we move.
Moe-tion Dance Theater also performs From this Day Forward, a compelling work which portrays a couple struggling with the issue of domestic violence, and Pushnpull, a more playful piece, and Those Who Touch Us, a company collaboration. Maureen Glennon Clayton and Heather Warfel Sandler will also present Again Together, a new duet celebrating the two sharing the stage again after many years. Guest Performing Artist Stephanie Nerbak has been invited to present her piece, Blend; I authenticate, made in close collaboration with the TrueSelves Transgender Support Group associated with The Pride Center of NJ. Joe Anselmo, a student of Centenary University, will perform a monologue by Michael Landreth about drag exploring how people often use drag to feel normal before they look into change. Rachel Brown, Moe-tion Dance Theater company member and rehearsal director, will perform an original monologue about the strength, grace and resilience of women.
On Sunday, March 18 at 3 p.m., XY Dance Project returns to the Lackland Performing Arts Center premiering a brand new concert entitled REVOLT. The series of works examines the issues of racism, homophobia, xenophobia and sexual harassment in our culture and current political climate. Five African American choreographers: Christopher Huggins from Alvin Aileyh American Dance Theater; Broadway Dance Center professionals Ebony Williams, Shela Barker, and Maleek Washington; and XY Dance Project Artistic Director Nijawwon Matthews; will share their stories and personal experiences in an evening of thought-provoking and moving dance works.
Finally, Dance Fest concludes with Nimbus Dance Works presenting Esther on Sunday, March 25 at 3 p.m. This edgy interpretation brings to life the powerful story of Biblical heroine Esther, an inspirational young woman who arose from very humble beginnings to become queen of the land. Esther’s evolution from a position passivity to possibility, and ultimate empowerment, examines the questions of “How is power wielded?” “Who gets to be the boss?” and “What role does gender and sexuality play in all of this?” Music is provided by the Brooklyn-based Indie-Rock band, Sky-Pony.
Also featured will be World Premieres by Darshan Singh Bhuller (former artistic director of London’s Phoenix Dance Theatre) and Vernard Gilmore (renowned dance with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre).
Tickets for Centenary Stage Company Dance Fest events in the Sitnik Theater of the Lackland Performing Arts Center are $20 for adults and $15 children. Centenary Stage Company is also offering a Dance Fest Flex Pass of $45 per patron and grants entry to all three dance events.
For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.centenarystageco.org or call the Centenary Stage Company box office at (908) 979-0900. Located in the Lackland Performing Arts Center at 715 Grand Ave., Hackettstown, NJ, the box office is open Monday through Friday from 1-5 p.m. and two hours prior to each performance. Centenary Stage Company can also be found across social media platforms; Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Like and follow to receive the latest in Centenary Stage Company news and special offers.
The 2017-2018 season of performing arts events at the Centenary Stage Company is made possible through the generous support of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the NJ State Council on the Arts, the Shubert Foundation, the Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, the Sandra Kupperman Foundation, and CSC corporate sponsors, including Premier Season Sponsor Heath Village Retirement Community, Silver Sponsors Hackettstown Medical Center, Home Instead Senior Care (Washington) and Fulton Bank of New Jersey, and Centenary Stage Company members and supporters.