Skip to main content

Center StageSM Presents Compagnie de Danse Jean-René Delsoin Oct/Nov 2012

From a media release:

Resonating Rhythms, Dynamic Motion: Haiti’s Compagnie de Danse Jean-René Delsoin Gives Contemporary Movement an Afro-Caribbean Pulse

The Compagnie de Danse Jean-René Delsoin, like its founder and mastermind, moves through the many worlds that intersect in Haiti: the rough-edged and vivacious rural dances and ceremonies, the refined social dance of the cities, and the vivid yet stark lines of contemporary global dance.

Bold swaths of color alternate with somber, focused intensity. The earthy, expressive voices of traditional drums interweave with the precise grace of classical ballet. Modern dance aesthetics and a deep love of popular moves meet beats that migrated from West Africa to Haiti: They all come together effortlessly in bold, emotionally resonant moments that will open doors to a better, more nuanced interaction and understanding between Americans and Haitians, between the artists and their American viewers and counterparts.

“Dance is my prayer,” Delsoin explains. “I want everyone in the audience to be touched by the colors and the rhythms, and to feel the energy and spirit of the company. I can’t imagine a more powerful way to promote understanding between us.”

Impeccable performers and evocative artists, the company of four dancers and three musicians has cultivated a distinctively nuanced, sophisticated view of Haitian culture and movement traditions, drawing on ballet and modern dance techniques in dialogue with Haiti’s plethora of traditional rhythms and sounds. In October and November 2012, they will move through the U.S. as part of Center StageSM (www.centerstageUS.org).

***

“I started dancing with my first breath,” reflects Delsoin.

The young Delsoin could effortlessly reproduce every movement he saw around him, and was often found staging small performances or simply dancing for his own and his family’s pleasure on the front porch. When a local dance teacher insisted he take a ballet class, she was shocked: The boy with the perfect plié had never taken a single ballet lesson.

Ability met profound passion and curiosity, and took Delsoin to the world’s dance capitals. He toured the world as a dancer, watched every performance he could, and studied at the schools of contemporary dance’s leading lights, from Alvin Ailey to José Limón.

Though an established figure on the contemporary dance scene, Delsoin dedicates himself to promoting creativity and technique in his community, as a teacher and choreographer. And he finds profound inspiration everywhere, in abstract notions and in the concrete details of everyday Haitian life: “It could be a concept, an idea, some movement I want to explore and sometimes it’s just a sound, a passage of music that sparks a million images in my head and my body…”

Delsoin’s images, shaped by Haiti’s movements, colors, sounds, and history, emerge through a conversation between drums and voices, between musicians and dancers on stage. “Haiti is a source of great inspiration for me,” he notes. “Traditional dances are extremely rich; the rhythms are sensational, as well as the history behind them. My work, in part, explores how drums are vitally important to Haitian life, how each beat, each rhythm speaks to us, fortifies us, moves us along.”

With the company’s highly disciplined, engagingly lithe dancers, Delsoin transforms the pulse of African-origin rhythms like the wave-like yanvalou or the bright ibo into athletic, riveting movements, and makes Haitian history do a bittersweet, utterly contemporary dance. “As we work together and when we perform, everybody becomes one,” Delsoin says. “The dancers, the musicians, and myself. We all bring our experiences, skills, and ideas to a lifelong melody that leaves its impression on the audience.”

Center StageSM will bring 10 ensembles from Haiti, Indonesia and Pakistan to the U.S. for month-long tours from June-December 2012, connecting artists with diverse communities across the country. Residencies will include performances, workshops, discussions, people-to-people exchanges, and community gatherings. Keep up with Center Stage by liking the program on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/CenterStagePage) and following us on Twitter (@centerstageus).

COMPAGNIE DE DANSE JEAN-RENE DELSOIN
October 24, 2012     Coker College     Hartsville SC
November 2, 2012     University of North Carolina-Wilmington     Wilmington NC
November 7, 2012     University of Nebraska     Lincoln NE
November 10, 2012     Johnson County Community College     Overland Park KS


Comments

What Else Is Hot This Week?

Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company Spring 2013 Toronto Performances

From a media release:

The new season brings
Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company
to new heights and new audiences

March 20-24, 2013 - A Night in Madrid
April 25-28, 2013 - Annual Toronto Season - World Premiere of Portales

TORONTO : Following on the heels of Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company's (EESDC) 30th anniversary year where its production Aguas/Waters was named one of the top five dance shows of 2012 by NOW Magazine, the early months of 2013 are full of excitement and possibility for Esmeralda and the company, which brings the finest flamenco and Spanish Classical Dance to Toronto stages.

March 20-24, 2013 - A Night in Madrid
Company dancers Esmeralda Enrique and Paloma Cortés perform Spanish Classical dance with the celebrated Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir for A Night in Madrid featuring the Iberian flavoured music of composer Luigi Boccherini who made his home in Spain. His work is infused with the sounds of Spanish and gypsy folk music.

March 20-24 …

Polina Semionova to Appear as Guest Artist with American Ballet Theatre

From a media release:

POLINA SEMIONOVA TO APPEAR AS GUEST ARTIST
WITH AMERICAN BALLET THEATRE
FOR 2011 SPRING SEASON AT METROPOLITAN OPERA HOUSE

New York - Polina Semionova, a principal dancer with Berlin State Opera Ballet, will debut as a Guest Artist with American Ballet Theatre for the 2011 Metropolitan Opera House season, it was announced January 14, 2011 by Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie. With ABT, Semionova will perform Kitri in Don Quixote at the matinee on Saturday, May 21, opposite David Hallberg as Basilio, and the dual role of Odette/Odile in Swan Lake on Saturday evening, July 2, opposite Hallberg as Prince Siegfried.

Born in Moscow, Semionova studied at the Bolshoi Ballet School before joining the Berlin State Opera Ballet as the company’s youngest principal dancer. Her repertoire with Berlin State Opera Ballet includes Odette-Odile in Swan Lake, Nikiya in La Bayadère, Marie in The Nutcracker, Princess Aurora in The Sleeping Beauty, Swanilda in Coppélia, Kitri in Don Quixo…

So You Can't Go: Six Ways To Travel Virtually

So You Can't Go:
Six Ways To Travel VirtuallyTravel is limited for most of us in the world these days. For Canadians, it depends on the province you live in, but with the border to the US still closed, and other options limited at best, virtual travel from the couch can provide at least a view with a difference at a time when you may well need it most. Google Cardboard – VR On A BudgetYou don't need a lot of cash to get into travel via virtual reality. Google Cardboard is a line of VR viewers that are, well, made of cardboard, and are priced starting at $12CAD.If you check out this link, you'll find out how to download the software to your smartphone.At this link, you can get yourself an actual Google Cardboard for a hands-free VR experience. Google Cardboard apps offer a variety of ways to experience our beautiful planet, including Google Earth itself, which can take you anywhere, along with apps to view museums and cultural artifacts, and more.Ascape VRAscape has a huge l…

Harlem Stage Digital Event: A Drop Of Midnight October 13 & 15 2020

From a release:Harlem Stage Digital Event:
A Drop Of Midnight
October 13 & 15 2020A two-part conversation with Jason ‘Timbuktu’ Diakité and his creative team around the developmental process of creating his autobiographical theater project, A Drop of Midnight. In this conversation Jason will take us on his journey to becoming one of Sweden’s chart-topping hip-hop artists and a best-selling author. He’ll also share the story of how a mixtape from Brooklyn traveled across the waters to the tiny village of Lund, Sweden and altered the course of his life forever. We will examine the impact of hip hop music and culture on the globe. How has hip-hop united communities of color globally?  How do you translate a personal story into a universal truth? How do you build a creative team? How has the current climate of social justice informed your artistic practice? Jason will read excerpts from the play and share some of the music. October 13—Part IIn this conversation A Drop of Midnight author…

Music Organizations Across Southern Ontario Celebrate Successful Virtual Concert Partnership

From a media release:Music Organizations Across Southern Ontario
Celebrate Successful Virtual Concert PartnershipWorld-renowned Canadian pianist Jan Lisiecki performs a virtually broadcasted program of Beethoven, Mendelssohn, and Chopin followed by a live on-stage interview from The Royal Conservatory’s Koerner HallProduced in association with Ottawa Chamberfest, Thousand Islands Playhouse, Festival of the Sound, and Stratford Summer Music, Toronto’s Koerner Hall hosted Canadian world-renowned pianist Jan Lisiecki in concert and conversation through a virtually broadcasted performance on Tuesday, July 28. The private event successfully welcomed more than 2,000 viewers online and was presented in place of five concerts that were interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.The evening’s program featured works by Beethoven, Mendelssohn, and Chopin. Following the broadcasted performance, Jan Lisiecki was joined by Executive Director of Performing Arts at The Royal Conservatory, Mervon Mehta, for …