About Dad and the Full Moon–A Dance Doubleheader

Collaborating on solutions in downtown arts district, emerging choreographers in Santa Monica, a ballet 50 years in the making in Bel Air, al fresco Sinatra ballet in San Marino, a dance drenched weekend in Hollywood, and more SoCal dance this week.

5.  They’re simply forever

The popular, long-running, mostly monthly Forever Flamenco returns. This installment features dancer Briseyda Zárate, joined by dancers Vanessa Albalos and Manuel Gutierrez, singer José Cortes, and guitarist José Tanaka. Fountain Theatre, 5060 Fountain Ave., Silverlake; Sun., Aug. 26, 8 p.m., $40-$50, $30 seniors & students. http://www.fountaintheatre.com. 

Forever Flamenco's Manuel Gutierrez. Photo by Patrick Rogers & Juan Ocampo.
Forever Flamenco’s Manuel Gutierrez. Photo by Patrick Rogers & Juan Ocampo.

4.  It’s 19, but who’s counting

The 19th edition of this long-running showcase takes the stage with dance and movement-based performances from emerging choreographers, directors and ensembles. New Shoes/19 features Ashley Allen, Jay Bartley, Sue Roginski with counterpoint/shift, Felicia St. Cyr, Michael Tomlin III, and Brandon Whited | B Scott Dance. Highways Performance Space, 1651 18th St., Santa Monica; Fri., Aug. 24, 8:30 p.m., $20, $15 seniors & students. https://highwaysperformance.org.

New Shoes #19. Photos courtesy of the artists.
New Shoes #19. Photos courtesy of the artists.

3.  A ten year return

Commissioned in 1954, composer Eric Zeisl’s insistence on a full orchestra for his ballet Jacob and Rachel resulted in it not being performed… until 2008. That’s when Zeisl’s grandson, E. Randol Schoenberg (whose other grandfather was Arnold Schoenberg), oversaw a revival with BODYTRAFFIC directors Lillian Barbeito and Tina Finkelman Berkett. They recruited three female choreographers from other companies, Laura Gorenstein-Miller (Helios Dance Theatre), Sarah Elgart (MADRES), and Andrea Miller (Gallim Dance) to interpret the Old Testament tale of Jacob’s love for Rachel and the circuitous, obstacle-strewn route before he prevailed and married her. That 2008 work is reprised by BODYTRAFFIC backed by the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony with students and alumni of UCLA’s Herb Alpert School of Music. Dr. Noreen Green conducts. American Jewish University, Gindi Auditorium, 15600 Mulholland Dr., Brentwood; Sun., Aug. 26, 7 p.m., $25-$40. 310-440-1572. https://www.aju.edu/whizin-center-continuing-education/events/The-Promise-A-Zeisl-Concert.

BODYTRAFFIC. Photo by Joshua Sugiyama.
BODYTRAFFIC. Photo by Joshua Sugiyama.

2.  What if we really could just get along?

In a distinctive celebration of Women’s Equality Day, MashUp Dance Company joins forces with CMLA, an architecture studio researching physical environments that promote well-being. Under the banner Expansiveness: Changing perspective, the immersive performance blends architecture and dance to explore how a problem can be recognized and collectively solved through expanding an idea. A&D Museum, 900 E. 4th St., downtown arts district; Fri.-Sat., Aug. 24-25, 8 p.m., $15-$20. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/expansiveness-changing-perspective-tickets-47960617498.

MashUp Dance Company in "Expansiveness: Changing perspective. Photo by Erin Cuevas.
MashUp Dance Company in “Expansiveness: Changing perspective. Photo by Erin Cuevas.

1.  Well worth two trips to Hollywood

A dance double header this weekend brings two all female shows to this al fresco venue. Friday and Saturday belong to Marjani Forté-Sanders, an alum of Urban Bush Women who brings her Bessie Award nominated Memoirs of a Unicorn. The highly personal evening-length solo performance has the audience seated onstage amid structures built by Tony-award winning set designer Mimi Lien and the choreographer’s Arkansas-born father Rick Forté who worked as a contractor and whose stories are the source of the evening. On Sunday and timed to coincide with a full moon to illuminate, szalt (dance co.) performs Moon &. This is the fifth full evening work by choreographer Stephanie Zaletel for her six member, all female contemporary troupe. The dancers will be backed by electro-acoustic composers Louis Lopez and Jonathan Snipes performing live. Zaletel and her troupe were selected by a panel of L.A. artists for this presentation as part of the Ford’s Ignite @the Ford. Ford Theatres, 2850 Cahuenga Blvd. East, Hollywood; Marjani Forté-Sanders Fri.-Sat., Aug. 24-25, 8:30 p.m., $25. szalt (dance co.) Sun., Aug. 26, 8:30 p.m., $25-$45. 323-461-3673,  https://www.fordtheatres.org.

Marjani Forté-Sanders in "Memoirs of a Unicorn". Photo by Maria Baranova.
Marjani Forté-Sanders in “Memoirs of a Unicorn”. Photo by Maria Baranova.

            Other dance of note:

American Ballet Theatre dancers Herman Cornejo and Sara Lane dance Twyla Tharp’s Sinatra Suite in this final summer Muse/ique concert. Under the program umbrella title U.S./Routes, artistic director Rachael Worby leads the orchestra, promising a musical road trip with music by Duke Ellington, Jackie Wilson, James Brown, Pearl Bailey and Jerry Herman. Grounds open for picnicking at 6 p.m. Huntington Library & Gardens, 1151 Oxford Rd., San Marino; Sat., Aug. 25, 8 p.m., $30-$130. http://muse-ique.com.

Dance DTLA. Photo by Javier Guillen.
Dance DTLA. Photo by Javier Guillen.

Warm summer nights mean it is time to dance under the stars with Dance DTLA. From now until September, the series, actually two different series, affords different ways to move on alternating Friday nights. Dance Downtown offers free beginner dance lessons at 7 p.m. followed by a chance to dance or to just watch and enjoy until 11 p.m. Alternate Fridays take on a more contemporary flavor with DJ Nights starting at 9 p.m. This Friday Dance Downtown spotlights Bollywood and the finale on Sept. 7 closes the summer season with the eclectic 90’s Night. With the Music Center Plaza closed off for renovation, the action moves to nearby Grand Park. Specific locations each week and a complete schedule of dance styles for Dance Downtown and DJs curating DJ Nights at http://www.musiccenter.org/dancedtla. Grand Park, 200 N. Grand Ave., downtown; Fri., Aug. 24, 7 p.m., free. http://www.musiccenter.org/dancedtla.

At this week’s JAM session, participants can learn the percussive dance flamenco or just watch and enjoy. Free, but reservations advised. Ford Amphitheater, 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. East, Hollywood; Mon., Aug. 27, 7 p.m., free. 323-461-3673, http://fordtheatres.org.

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