Running to the Rite

A romantic tragedy incarcerated downtown, Irish jigs in Malibu, sacrificial spring rites downtown, nomadic movements in West LA, a two-fer launched in the Arts District, toe-shoed men in Long Beach, more SoCal dance this busy week, and a peek at next week.

Live This Week

All together now

The Dance at the Odyssey festival moves into week four with Goblin Party in the premiere of Nomad. Mizuki Sako and Tulsi Shah provide the choreography and Hyoin Jun directs a consideration of the distinctive life of nomadic tribes. Odyssey Theatre, 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd., West LA; Fri.-Sat., Feb. 2-3, 8 pm, Sun., Feb. 4, 2 pm, $25. Full festival at Odyssey Theatre.

Three dancers cover their mouths
Goblin Party. Photo by George Simian

Sacrifice to spring

Opening the 1984 Olympic Arts Festival in LA, a brutal, visceral version of Rite of Spring on a stage covered in aromatic peat launched a little-known German choreographer, Pina Bausch, into international fame along with her company Tanztheater Wuppertal. That stunning production from the late choreographer has been recreated by a company of 30 dancers drawn from a dozen countries in Africa. The performances, under the auspices of the Pina Bausch Foundation, take the stage this weekend. The program also includes Common Ground(s), choreographers Germaine Acogny and Malou Airaudo’s response to Bausch’s Rite. Acogny is the founder of Senegalese École des Sables  and Airaudo is a former dancer with Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch. The Music Center, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, 135 N. Grand Ave., downtown; Thurs.-Sat., Feb. 8-10, 7:30 pm, Sun., Feb. 11, 2 pm, $35-$152. Music Center.

Dancers in different dresses
Pina Bausch’s “The Rite of Spring.” Photo by Oliver Look

Romeo & Juliet go to jail

The choreographer who transformed Swan Lake into a tale of ballet men in feathered knickers arrives with his 2019 Matthew Bourne’s Romeo & Juliet. Shakespeare’s star-crossed central lovers remain, as does Prokofiev’s seductively dissonant score, but the action has been moved from Verona, Italy to a dystopian prison and Juliet’s vile cousin Tybalt is now a sexually abusive warden. Bourne does darker with the best, yet still sets a standard for drawing out the poignant moments and bits of light in his shadowy retellings. Music Center, Ahmanson Theatre, 135 N. Grand Ave., downtown; Tues.-Fri., 8 pm, Sat., 2 & 8 pm, Sun., 1 & 6:30 pm, thru Sun., Feb. 25, $35-$155. CTG.

A couple in front of bars
Matthew Bourne’s Romeo and Juliet. Photo by Johan Persson


The latest edition of LA Dance Project’s Launch has a shared stage. Making  their official west coast debut, the ten-member Summation Dance/LA brings On our way home choreographed by Taryn Vander Hoop. A multi-generational cast explores issues of personal mental health and caring for others. Derion Loman features five dancers in considerations about clothing, the memory of the people who wore it, and the residual energy a garment holds. LA Dance Project, 2245 E. Washington Blvd., Arts District; Thurs.-Sat., Feb. 1-3, 8 pm, $25-$48 including fees. LA Dance Project tickets.

A group of dancers leap in the air
Summation Dance. Photo courtesy of the artists 

Men in tutus

The secret of Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo is they are serious ballet dancers who happen to be men in toe shows as they offer seriously funny send-ups of classical ballets from Swan Lake to Don Quixote. They may play the classical ballets’ plots for laughs, but they can go toe to toe (pun intended) with any professional ballet company. Carpenter Performing Arts Center, Cal State University Long Beach, 6200 E. Atherton St., Long Beach; Sat., Feb. 3, 8 pm, $55. Carpenter Performing Arts Center.

Male dancers in Swan Lake tutus
Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo. Photo by Zoran Jelenic

Sunset salon

For this edition of the salon series Truth or Consequences, Heidi Duckler Dance promises a stimulating mix of dance, music, performance and art. Announced participants include current artist in residence Jobel Medina, Dorian Wood, Jeonghyeon Joo, Santiago Villarreal, M A Harms, David Eskenazi, and the artistic director of the Arpana Dance Company Ramya Harishankar. The Bendix Building, 1206 Maple Ave., Arts District; Sun., Feb. 4, 5 pm, $35, $20 students. Heidi Suckler Dance.

A man holds another dancer
Jobel Medina. Photo courtesy of the artist

Stepping up

Enjoy the energized versions of traditional and contemporary Irish dance in Jig from the Trinity Irish Dance Company. Pepperdine University, Smothers Theater, 24255 Pacific Coast Hwy.; Tues., Feb. 6, 8 pm, $25-$55. Pepperdine University.

Five Irish dancer jump
Trinity Irish Dance Company. Photo courtesy of the artists

All electric

Timed to coincide with First Friday events on nearby Abott Kinney Boulevard, High Voltage offers an eclectic, ever-changing line-up of performers, often including dance and movement performers. Electric Lodge, 1416 Electric Ave., Venice; Fri., Feb. 2, 8 pm, $10. Electric Lodge.

Big blue balls
Max 10. Photo courtesy of the artists

Ten for ten

The mostly monthly program Max 10 gives ten performers ten minutes each onstage. Hosted by venue director Joel Shapiro and curated by the staff, dance is a mainstay in the line up of performances. A post-show reception gives a chance to chat with the artists. Electric Lodge, 1416 Electric Ave., Venice; Mon., Feb. 5, 7:30 pm, $10.  Electric Lodge.

A Peek at Next Week

Dance at the Odyssey Week 4 – how i became kinder, and kinder at the Odyssey Theatre, 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd., West LA; Fri.-Sat., Feb. 9-10, 8 pm, Sun., Feb. 11, 2 pm, $25. Odyssey Theatre.

FOOTHILLS DANCEMAKERS (Benita Bike’s DanceArt, Pennington Dance Group, Nancy Evans Dance Theatre and Lineage Dance) at Lineage Performing Arts Center, 920 E. Mountain St., Pasadena; Sat., Feb. 10, 7:30 pm, Sun., Feb. 11, 4 pm, $25, $20 students & seniors. Lineage PAC.

A group of dancers in white kneel
Nancy Evans Dance Theatre. Photo courtesy of the artists.

Compañía Nacional de Danza at the Luckman Fine Arts Complex, Cal State University Los Angeles, 5151 State University Dr., East LA; Thurs., Feb. 15, 8 pm, 55-$195. Luckman Fine Arts Complex.

AIM by Kyle Abraham at the Wallis, Bram Goldsmith Theater, 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills; Fri., Feb. 9, 7:30 pm, Sat., Feb. 10, 2 pm, $49-$79. The Wallis.

A group of dancers supports a dancer
A.I.M. by Kyle Abraham. Photo courtesy of the artists

Brigham Young University International Folk Dance Ensemble – Journey: Reflections at Irvine Barclay Theater, UC Irvine, 4242 Campus Dr., Irvine; Tues., Feb. 13, 7 pm, $23-$31. The Barclay.

2024 Chinese Spring Festival at the Irvine Barclay Theater, UC Irvine, 4242 Campus Dr., Irvine; Sun., Feb. 11, 4 pm, $28-$128. The Barclay.

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