Belgrade Dance Festival
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A Million Voices
choreography, costume design: Matthew Neenan
music: Peggy Lee
lighting design: Burke Wilmore
premiere: Wallis Annenberg Center, Beverly Hills CA 2018
“A Million Voices” is inspired by the great music of Peggy Lee. Lee’s music, in response to the political climate of her time, reminds us that even during dark times, life is worth enjoying.
Matthew Neenan began his dance training at the Boston Ballet School, and later attended the La Guardia High School of Performing Arts and the School of American Ballet in New York. From 1994-2007, he was engaged with the Pennsylvania Ballet where he danced numerous principal roles in works by George Balanchine, John Cranko, Paul Taylor, Peter Martins, Val Caniparoli, JormaElo, Lila York, Meredith Rainey, Christopher Wheeldon and Jerome Robbins. In October 2007, he was named Choreographer in Residence at the Pennsylvania Ballet. His choreography has been featured and performed by BalletX, Pennsylvania Ballet, Washington Ballet, Colorado Ballet, Ballet Memphis, Milwaukee Ballet, Juilliard Dance, Sacramento Ballet, Nevada Ballet, among others. He has received numerous awards and grants for his choreography. In 2005, Neenan co-founded BalletX with fellow dancer Christine Cox.
choreography, music: Hofesh Shechter
costume design: Linda Chow and Bodytraffic
lighting design: Chahine Yavroyan
premiere: The Joyce Theater, New York, NY 2015
“Dust” takes a dark look at the powers that steer us in today’s society. The lithe choreography for six dancers is enhanced by a rich soundtrack composed by Shechter himself.
Hofesh Shechter is recognized as one of the UK’s most exciting artists and is renowned for composing the musical scores for his dance creations with his raw, atmospheric music complimenting his Company’s unique physicality. Hofesh graduated from the Jerusalem Academy for Dance and Music before moving to Tel Aviv to join the world renowned Batsheva Dance Company, where he worked with artistic director Ohad Naharin and other choreographers including Wim Vandekeybus, Paul Norton, Tero Saarinen and Inbal Pinto. He began drum and percussion studies whilst in Tel Aviv and continued later in Paris at the Agostiny College. Subsequently, he began experimenting and developing his own music while participating in various projects in Europe involving dance, theatre and body-percussion. In 2002 Shechter arrived in the UK. After tremendous success with works like “Fragments”, “Cult” and “Uprising”, he was commissioned by The Place, Southbank Centre and Sadler’s Wells, to create “In your rooms” which was presented at all three venues in 2007 and culminated in sold-out shows at Sadler’s Wells. In 2008, Shechter formed Hofesh Shechter Company and since then the Company can be found performing throughout Europe, Asia, North America and Australia, reaching audiences in many of the world’s leading dance venues. Recent tours have included South America and the Middle East with the global appetite for Shechter’s work continuing with his later creations like “The Art of Not Looking Back”, “Political Mother”, “Survivor” and “Sun”. Alongside his work for Hofesh Shechter Company, his works have been taken into the repertory of many UK and international dance companies including Cedar Lake Ballet (New York), Carte Blanche (Norway), Bern Ballet, Scottish Dance Theatre, CandoCo (UK) and Nederlands Dans Theater. The Hofesh Shechter Company was presented twice at the Belgrade Dance Festival (“Political Mother”and “Sun”).
choreography: Micaela Taylor
music: SCHOCKE, James Brown
costume design: Bodytraffic
lighting design: Burke Wilmore
premiere: The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, Beverly Hills CA 2019
“Snap” is inspired by the ethnically diverse, yet isolating crowds of Los Angeles. It urges audiences to “snap out of” social pressures to conform, and to connect with their individuality as well as with people around them.
Micaela Taylor is a dancer and choreographer, Artistic Director of The TL Collective. She is the recipient of the Inaugural Springboard EMERGE Choreographic Award and named one of Dance Magazine's “25 to Watch” in 2019 and Dance Magazine cover in May 2020. Taylor has been commissioned to choreograph and teach by Bodytraffic, Springboard Danse Montreal, Cleo Parker Robinson Dance, B12 Festival Berlin, Carlos Acosta’s Acosta Danza, and more. Taylor's work has been presented at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, The Broad Stage, Ford Amphitheatre, The Barclay Center, Institute of Contemporary Art Boston, and more. Her quirky style of facial expressions and athletic theatricality sets her work apart. SNAP, a commissioned work created for Bodytraffic set her mark as a choreographer that transcends one style of dance.
Bodytraffic is a world-class contemporary dance company, known internationally for its Los Angeles grown, contagious vivacity. Founded in 2007 by Lillian Rose Barbeito and Tina Finkelman Berkett, Bodytraffic continues to push boundaries and establish Los Angeles as a city known for dance. The company is deeply committed to producing acclaimed works by distinctive choreographic voices, all while surging to the forefront of the contemporary dance world. Bodytraffic’s diverse repertory includes original works by Kyle Abraham, StijnCelis, Barak Marshall, Ohad Naharin, Matthew Neenan, Arthur Pita, Victor Quijada, Hofesh Shechter, Richard Siegal... Bodytraffic seamlessly pays homage to traditional styles and techniques, while forging the way for contemporary dance of today. The company has performed for sold-out audiences at prestigious theaters and festivals around the world.
artistic directors: Lillian Rose Barbeito & Tina Finkelman Berkett
dancers: Tina Finkelman Berkett, Joseph Davis, Haley Heckethorn, Natalie Leibert, Jessica Liu, Guzmán Rosado, Jamal White
BODYTRAFFIC has received generous support from the New England Foundation for the Arts, Princess Grace Foundation, The Joyce Theater Foundation, The Sydney D. Holland Foundation, Mortimer & Mimi Levitt Foundation, The Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles, The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, American Jewish University, Loyola Marymount University, and The Agency.