Celebrating the Defeat of French Mercenaries

Arab-influenced flamenco in Venice, modern and Korean dance fusion in East L.A., contemporary dance to harp music in Long Beach, World dance in Santa Monica, a new dance festival in Westminster, Cinco de Mayo folkloric dance in Pasadena, and more So Cal dance this week.

5.  Fright night dance

Continuing with its admittedly diabolical fascination with horror dance, OdDancity, led by choreographer Alex Floyd, returns with Marbles. Floyd and dancers Ana Miro, Emily Yetter and Leslie Augustine promise modern dance ladened with shrieks for all. The intimate venue requires reservations. PAM Residencies, 5810 1/2 N. Figueroa Ave., Highland Park; Sat.-Sun., May 5-6, 7:30 & 9 p.m., $15-$30. http://www.oddmarbles.com. 

OdDancity's "Marbles". Photo courtesy of the artists.
OdDancity’s “Marbles”. Photo courtesy of the artists.

4.  Flamenco at the beach

Flamenco dancer/singer Yolanda Arroyo and guitarist Paco Arroyo are joined by a cast of eight. Led by artistic director/performer Corina del Sol, Flamenco Arabe traces flamenco’s lineage traveling from Turkey to Spain. Electric Lodge, 1416 Electric Ave., Venice; Sat., May 5, 7:30 p.m., $25-$27. corinadelsol@verizon.net, http://www.electriclodge.org.

3.  Fusion dance

Respected for her ability to blend modern dance and elements of Korean dance, choreographer and teacher Hae Kyung Lee brings her eponymous troupe Hae Kyung Lee & Dancers to the stage. Wes Hambright composed the music. Luckman Intimate Theatre, 5151 State University Dr., E.L.A.; Sat., May 5, 5 p.m., free.

Keith Johnson & Dancers. Photo by Gregory RR Crosby.
Keith Johnson & Dancers. Photo by Gregory RR Crosby.

2.  Harping

An intimate evening of contemporary dance set to harp music with Keith Johnson and Dancers in Adrift Within the Pale Forest Under the Moon. Summer Brown, Haihua Chiang, Bahareh Ebrahimzadeh, Colleen Hendricks, Katie Istvan, Alvaro Nunez, Andrew W. Palomares, and Ismael Rumbo dance. Cal State University Long Beach, 1250 Bellflower Blvd., Department of Dance, Studio 7, 2nd floor. Long Beach; Fri., May 4, 8 p.m., $10 reservations required. info@keithjohnsondancers.com.

Danza Floricanto/USA's "5 de Mayo". Photo by Frank Sandoval.
Danza Floricanto/USA’s “5 de Mayo”. Photo by Frank Sandoval.

1.  The real Cinco de Mayo

An annual excuse for margaritas and Mexican-themed partying, Cinco de Mayo is often mistaken for Mexican Independence Day (that’s September 16), rather than the strategic battle where the Mexican army unexpectedly defeated the French empire’s mercenaries. Danza Floricanto/USA‘s 7th annual 5 de Mayo  is one celebratory event focused on the original victory of Mexican forces and Mexican culture. Artistic director Gema Sandoval and her ensemble have established themselves among SoCal’s pre-eminent folkloric troupes and at the same time, have taken the traditional dance form into realms of contemporary dance and topical issues. For its annual 5 de Mayo celebration, the troupe goes traditional with dance from various regions of Mexico backed by live music from Ray Medina and Mariachi Mexicapan. ARC Pasadena, 1158 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena; Sat., May 5, 8 p.m., $20 in advance, $25 at door, $15 students & seniors, $5 children under 5 at the door. 323-261-0385. http://danzafloricantousa.org. 

Other dance of note:

Last year marked the arrival of the Orange County Dance Festival to the roster of SoCal dance festivals. Hosted by AkomiDance Company, the line up for this year’s festival includes Evan Rosenblatt & Dancers, Kairos Dance Company, BrockusRED, Emergent Dance Company, fabe, SBCC Dance Company, RhetOracle Dance Company, SIZA Dance Company, FUSE Dance Company, Vicious Circle Dance Company, soloist Alan Perez and the host company. Festival events also include a dance film and classes in a variety of dance styles. Full festival details at http://akomidance.com. Rose Center Theater,  14140 All American Way, Westminster; Sat., May 5, 6 p.m. $15, $10 students & seniors. http://www.rosecentertheater.com/tickets.html

AkomiDance Company. Photo courtesy of the artists.
AkomiDance Company. Photo courtesy of the artists.

A variety of dance styles from contemporary to hip hop and dance from around the globe are offered by Santa Monica College’s Global Motion World Dance Company. The Broad Stage, 1310 11th St., Santa Monica; Fri., May 4, 7:30 p.m., Sat., May 5, 4 & 7:30 p.m., $20 in advance, $22 at door. http://smc.edu/eventsinfo.

This performance dubbed Passing the Torch, marks the 75th anniversary of Djanbazian Dance Academy and celebrates its respected director Anna Djanbazian. The program includes works from the ballet school’s repertoire and new works. Glendale High School, John Wayne Auditorium, 1140 E. Broadway, Glendale; Sun., May 6, 5 p.m., $35-$100.  http://www.itsmyseat.com/events/699576.html.

Inspired by the Latin rock band Soda Stereo, Cirque du Soleil returns to astonish with a new crew of dancers, acrobats and clowns. SEP7IMO DIA – No Descansaré. The Forum, 3900 W. Manchester Blvd., Inglewood; Thurs., May 3, 8 p.m., Fri.-Sat., May 4-5, 4 & 8 p.m., Sun., May 6, 1 & 5 p.m., $55-$155. https://www.cirquedusoleil.com/sep7imo-dia.

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