Movement, But Not There Yet

Three L.A.-based companies commute to Palm Springs, curated new dance downtown, Black male identity considered return in West Hollywood, contemporary choreography in Santa Monica, flamenco starts year #2 in Echo Park, a festival in motion celebrates women in motion, and more SoCal dance this week.

5.  Identity in “site”

West Hollywood’s legendary Schindler House provides the site specific stage for a trio of dancers as choreographer/artist Chris Emile explores Black male identity in connection with his exhibition Amend. Expect movement, sculpture, sound, and archival as well as found cinema footage in this event offered in collaboration with No)One.Art House. Schindler House, 835 N. Kings Rd., West Hollywood; Sat., March 7 & 21, April 11 & 25, 3:30, 4:30 & 5:30 p.m., free.

Chris Emile's "Amend." Photo courtesy of the artist.
Chris Emile’s “Amend.” Photo courtesy of the artist.

4.  Injustice echoes close to home

Fandang Obon perform traditional Japanese dance along with performances of music, art, and speakers surrounding the exhibition of artist Taiji Terasaki’s Transcendients: Heroes at Borders. The artist’s work and the event-filled celebration honors more than fifty figures dubbed “transcendients” combining the words “transcend” and “transient” to honor those who stood up and continue to stand up for justice. Obon dance is set for 4 p.m., but entertainment is throughout the day. Full schedule at Museum entry is also free. Japanese American National Museum, 100 N. Central Ave., Little Tokyo; Sat., March 7, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., free.

Fandang Obon. Photo courtesy of the artists.
Fandang Obon. Photo courtesy of the artists.

3.  A third reunion

Based in Catalonia Spain, Andrés Corchero returns to LA to perform his solo PADRE (father) and also to collaborate with L.A.-based Butoh artist Oguri in a new, as yet untitled duet. This marks Corchero’s third visit to L.A. and ongoing collaboration with Oguri’s Body Weather Laboratory, a relationship that dates back to 1986 in Japan when both danced in Butoh legend Min Tanaka’s famed company. The performance opens the 2020 Flower of the Season series. Info at Electric Lodge, 1416 Electric Ave., Venice; Fri.-Sat., March 6-7, 8 p.m., Sun., March 8, 4 p.m., $10.

Flowers of the Season's Oguri and Andrés Corchero. Photo courtesy of the artists.
Flowers of the Season’s Oguri and Andrés Corchero. Photo courtesy of the artists.

2.  Tragic Teens on TipToe

Those Italian teens Romeo and Juliet may be the touchstone tale of tragic young love, but choreographer Alexei Ratmansky draws from an earlier Greek story of doomed romance in Of Love and Rage, his latest for American Ballet Theatre. Derived from a first century Greek novel, the plot centers on a woman who realizes her beauty, stealthily backed by her brains, are her only power and makes use of both in a story rife with love, betrayal, forgiveness and all the familiar ballet emotions that the title strongly suggests won’t end “happily ever after.” Ratmansky has provocatively chosen music by Aram Khachaturian who provided the sweeping score for the ballet Spartacus and an ABT visit is always a chance to see beautiful dancers. Scheduled casting is at the website. Segerstrom Center for the Arts, 600 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa; Thurs.-Fri., March 5-6, 7:30 p.m., Sat., March 7, 2 & 7:30 p.m., Sun., March 8, 1 p.m., $29-$189.

American Ballet Theatre's "Of Love & Rage." Photo by Erin Baiano.
American Ballet Theatre’s “Of Love & Rage.” Photo by Erin Baiano.

1.  Woman-splaining dance

Under the banner Each for Equal, MashUP Contemporary Dance Company hosts a celebration of the female in dance with performances plus classes and panel discussion with leading teachers, choreographers, and artistic directors who happen to be female. The Saturday performance dubbed Each for Equal Showcase offers performances by 20 women and the Sunday matinee boasts work from LA Contemporary Dance Company’s Genevieve Carson, Mallory Fabian of FABE, Re-Born’s Boroka Nagy, and the host company’s Victoria Brown and Sarah Rodenhouse. Full details on events and performances at L.A. Theatre Center, 514 S. Spring St., Sat., March 7, 7 p.m., $27.   Also Sofitel Hotel, 8555 Beverly Blvd., West Hollywood; Sun., March 8, 2:30 p.m., free.

LA Contemporary Dance Company. Photo courtesy of the artists.
LA Contemporary Dance Company. Photo courtesy of the artists.

Other dance of note: 

Cuban-American Camila Arana, born and raised in Miami Florida, is now based here in L.A. where she danced with Clarobscur and Ate9 dance companies. Matilda Sakamoto’s ties are with New York City where she studied at Julliard School, danced and choreographed. The two dancemakers offer a spit bill with Arana’s Agua tackling issues of asylum with music from the Buena Vista Social Club while Sakamoto’s duet Clutter considers both outside and inside the box. Highways Performance Space, 1851 18th St., Santa Monica; Sat., March 7, 8:30 p.m., $20, $15 seniors & students.

Camila Arana & Matilda Sakamoto's
Camila Arana & Matilda Sakamoto’s “Split.” Photo courtesy of the artists.

Madeline Falcone and Sebastian Hernandez curate this edition of REDCAT Studio: Spring 2020, the quarterly showcase of new dance and performance works and works-in-progress. Among the dance contributors look for Alfonso Cervera’s Poc-Chuc Number 5, Hyoin Jun & Jisu Jeon’s duet Nori, Austyn Rich’s use of line dance in Etched, dancer Robyn O’Dell and artist Anna Ialeggio’s exploration of interspecies relations in Crane & Man, Tzon-Han Wu’s hip-hop trio Prosecutor On That Finger, and Roksna Zeinapur and Barnett Cohen’s approach gesture response. REDCAT, Disney Hall, 631 W. 2nd St., downtown; Sun.-Mon., March 8-9, 8:30 p.m., $15, $12 students.

Luminario Ballet. Photo courtesy of the artists.
Luminario Ballet. Photo courtesy of the artists.

Three excellent LA-based companies—BrockusRED, Luminario Ballet and Lula Washington Dance Theater—share the spotlight in the main performance event of the Palm Springs Dance Project. The performance caps off a series of workshops and related dance-focused festival events. The selected trio of companies wonderfully reflects the range and depth of SoCal dance. Annenberg Theater, Palm Springs Art Museum, 101 N. Museum Dr., Palm Springs; Sat., March 7, 7:30 p.m., $55-$130.

Lula Washington Dance Theater. Photo courtesy of the artists.
Lula Washington Dance Theater. Photo courtesy of the artists.

Dance from Djanbazian Dance Company, musical groups and children’s activities abound in the 18th annual Nawruz Festival celebrating Iranian New Year. A related evening musical concert in Royce Hall requires a ticket, but the festival dance, music and other events just outside in the Dickson Court area are all free. UCLA Dickson Court, 10745 Dickson Court, Westwood., Sun., March 8, noon to 5 p.m., free.

Ballet Hispanico. Photo by Paula Lobo.
Ballet Hispanico. Photo by Paula Lobo.

A trio of repertory works considering aspects of LatinX culture are the calling card on this visit by Ballet Hispánico. The program includes Andrea Miller’s Naci, Annabelle Lopez Ochoa’s Tiborones, and 18 + 1 from Gustavo Ramirez Sansano and Sergio Cordoba. Haugh Performing Arts Center, 1000 W. Foothill Blvd., Glendora; Sat., March 7, $35-$45.  

Respected dancer Briseyda Zárate and her eponymous Briseyda Zárate & Co. launch the second year of their flamenco series Flamenco Tablao. Loosely translated as a venue or the platform where flamenco is performed, the ensemble occupies the floor in what some consider among the most authentic flamenco forms. Bootleg Theater, 2220 Beverly Blvd., Echo Park; Sun., March 8, 6:30 p.m., $30 & $40.

Briseyda Zárate. Photo by Bruce Bisenz.
Briseyda Zárate. Photo by Bruce Bisenz.

Presented by the Vietnamese American Society for Creative Arts & Music (VASCAM), Obsessed Pho More offers wordplay on the popular Vietnamese dish as the title of an evening of choreography by Carla Körbes and Sarah Wroth in this celebration of four Vietnamese-American composers. Musco Center for the Arts, Chapman University, 415 N. Glassell St., Orange. Sun., March 8, 4 p.m. $15-$58. 844-626-8726.

LA Cuban Ballet's Bertha Suarez. Photo courtesy of the artist.
LA Cuban Ballet’s Bertha Suarez. Photo courtesy of the artist.

LA Cuban Ballet hosts an eclectic evening of dance, music, and opera selections. Downtown Dance & Movement, 1144 S. Hope St., downtown; Sat., March 7, 9 p.m., $25.

Ever since their 1976 debut on the Muppet Show, the human puppets that cavort about the stage as Mummenschanz continue to amuse and charm with their distinctive blend of masks, choreography, props, and lighting. Luckman Performing Arts Center, Cal State University Los Angeles, 5151 State University Dr., E.L.A.; Thurs., March 14, 8 p.m., $30-$50.,

Mummenschanz .Photo by Marco Hartmann.
Mummenschanz .Photo by Marco Hartmann.

Just in case there are not yet enough interpretations, director/composer Mat Sweeney and creative producer Sebastian Peters-Lazaro bring the talents of their eclectic performance ensemble Four Larks to bear on Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein. The troupe has drawn high praise and enthusiastic audiences for its ongoing partnership with the L.A. Chamber Orchestra and was last seen conducting an immersive excursion through the afterlife with the Getty Villa environs standing in for ancient underworld in Katabasis. This new project draws on choreography and set design by Sebastian Peters-Lazaro with a dozen performers who double as musicians. The text and libretto from Sweeney promises a cautionary consideration of modern technology lurking in Shelley’s classic tale. The Wallis, Lovelace Theater, 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills; Thurs.-Fri., March 5-6, 8 p.m., Sat., March 7, 2:30 & 8 p.m. $60.

Four Larks'
Four Larks’ “Frankenstein.” Photo courtesy of the artists.

In its 41st and latest endeavor Volta, Cirque Du Soleil spotlights bicycle street sports and acrobatics associated with the world of BMX including a full-blown BMX park for what is billed as a “breath-taking finale of non-stop acrobatics on wheels.” The L.A. action continues through this weekend before the signature Big Top comes down and moves to Orange county.  Dodger Stadium, 1000 Vin Scully Ave., Elysian Park; Tues. thru Sun., March 8, various dates, times & ticket pricess at Orange County Fair & Event Center, 88 Fair Dr., Costa Mesa; Wed., March 18 to Sun., April 19, various dates, times & ticket prices at

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