BalletX, Philadelphia’s premier contemporary ballet and the Resident Dance Company of The Wilma Theater, announced their Winter Series 2014 for February 12-16. From three distinguished choreographers will offer a diverse program that will take audiences on a journey through a myriad of landscapes set to an eclectic mix of world, pop and classical music. A compelling compilation of both established work as well as two world premieres, this Valentine’s Day Winter Series will bring an astounding array of virtuosic contemporary dance to the Wilma stage.
The program features the work of Joshua L. Peugh, James Gregg and Jodie Gates, all established artists influenced by a variety of genres including classical, contemporary, modern and hip hop. A program designed to highlight the musical and technical prowess of the BalletX dancers, Winter Series includes a world premiere pas de deux by Peugh as well as the company premiere of his 2012 work Slump, the return of Gates’ Delicate Balance (BalletX world premiere 2012) and a world premiere by James Gregg.
WINTER SERIES 2014
Joshua L. Peugh makes his BalletX debut with the company premiere of his 2012 work Slump. Set to Klezmer, mambo and jazz music, Slump is “a comedy of frivolous, sexually provocative manners” (Dallas Morning News). Peugh was originally inspired by the formal dances he had seen on old episodes of 1950s variety TV show “The Lawrence Welk Show”. When Peugh began working on the piece that formality soon morphed into what looked like a primitive mating dance filled with grounded and comedic movement. Peugh will also be working with BalletX on the creation of a world premiere pas de deux. This pas de deux, inspired by the simplicity and purity of Japanese animation, explores the various ways that a romantic relationship evolves. “Dance now is very physically loud,” says Peugh. “With this work I’m focusing on the understated and the subtle nuances found in simple movement.” Peugh comes to Philadelphia from Dallas where he is the Artistic Director of Dark Circles Contemporary Dance, a company he founded in 2008. Peugh was formerly a dancer with Universal Ballet Company in South Korea, performing soloist and featured roles in the works of Ohad Naharin, Christopher Wheeldon, Sungsoo Ahn and others. He has created work for festivals all over Asia and North America. Peugh is also an Adjunct Lecturer of Dance at his alma matter, Southern Methodist University.
Originally from Oklahoma and now working in Canada, choreographer James Gregg explores the discovery and impact of love in his world premiere for BalletX. Inspired by a song written by Jon Brion, Gregg’s piece is comprised of 7 different sections, each of which delves into the emotions surrounding the feeling of falling in love for the first time. Tentatively titled L-O-V-E, Gregg’s work features a broad range of music, including Nat King Cole, Brion, and Vivaldi. With a style he describes as “raw emotion combined with classical ballet technique,” Gregg is the resident choreographer for L’Ecole Superieure de Danse de Quebec and a dancer with RUBBERBANDance Group (RBDG). He was the winner of the 2011 International Choreographic Competition at Festival des Arts de Saint-Sauveur and has choreographed works for River North Chicago Dance Company, Northwest Dance Project’s Pretty Creatives Competition, Les Ballet Jazz Workshop, and for Springboard Danse Project.
To conclude the Winter Series bill, BalletX brings back to the stage Delicate Balance, “a deeply emotional work” (NYC Dance Stuff) by renowned choreographer Jodie Gates. Set to the music of Arvo Part, Henryk Gorecki, Gavin Bryars, David Lang and Max Richter and centered on the notion that as one moves through life, there always remains a curious sense of wonder in a world filled with chaos, Delicate Balance originally premiered during Spring Series 2012 and was toured and performed for BalletX’s premiere at The Joyce Theater in New York in the summer of 2012. “It’s a joy to be able to perform Jodie’s Delicate Balance again, I absolutely love the intensity and dynamics in this piece. The movement highlights the dancers’ physicality while at the same time stretches them emotionally.” says BalletX Co-Artistic and Executive Director Christine Cox. A former principal dancer with Joffrey Ballet and The Pennsylvania Ballet, Gates has spent thirty years in the field of dance—as an innovative choreographer, director, producer educator and dancer. Praised by The Denver Post as one of ballet’s “most-admired dance makers,” she has choreographed ballets for BalletWest, Staatsballett Berlin in Germany, American Ballet Theater II, Washington Ballet, Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, among others.
Winter Series Performance Dates/Times:
Wednesday, February 12, 8:00PM, Opening Night
Thursday, February 13, 8:00PM
Friday, February 14, 8:00PM
Saturday, February 15, 2:00PM
Saturday, February 15, 8:00PM
Sunday, February 16, 2:00PM
At The Wilma Theater, 265 S. Broad St., Philadelphia
Box Office: 215-546-7824
Winter Series 2014 will see the continuation of The X-Process, an audience enrichment initiative. During each Series in the 2013-2014 Season, The X-Process will feature both an interactive lecture (A Pie, A Pint & The Process) and a Q&A event (Conversation with the Artists), both led by esteemed New York City based dance critic and author Elizabeth Zimmer. A Pie, A Pint & The Process for Winter Series will explore dance from the perspective of the dancer. Several dance professionals from various Philadelphia area dance organizations will also be included as participants in this lecture.
The X-Process Events:
Wednesday, February 12, 7:00-8:00PM- Conversation with the Artists (free)
Saturday, February 15, 4:30-6:00PM- A Pie, A Pint & The Process ($5)
More information visit their web site at http://balletx.org/