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Koresh Dance unites 24 Philadelphia companies for 2nd Come Together Festival, July 23-27


Koresh Dance Company will connect established companies, new faces, repertory favorites, and fresh choreography this summer when it presents two dozen local and regional dance companies in its Come Together festival at the Suzanne Roberts Theatre. The festival, which began in 2013, celebrates the diversity, creativity, and technical excellence of Philadelphia’s dance community. From July 23rd to the 27th, its mixed programs will stage modern dance alongside tap and contemporary ballet, juxtaposing distinct styles from the hip hop of Rennie Harris Puremovement to the acrobatic physical theater of Brian Sanders’ JUNK.

Koresh Dance Company aims to increase access to dance and awareness of the city’s rich movement cultures by assembling numerous unique dance styles in a single festival. Last year, The Dance Journal called Come Together “a rousing success” that “reflected a healthy, diverse Philly dance scene.”

Koresh Dance Company, a city staple since its 1991 debut, constantly seeks new life for Philadelphia dance. Artistic Director Ronen (Roni) Koresh values collaboration with regional companies and choreographers, and launched the Come Together festival last year to provide a platform for networking and mutual support in the dance community. This year’s roster includes returning favorites BalletFlemming, Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers, and the Rock School for Dance Education, as well as 21 other companies representing a wealth of dance styles, traditions, and voices as diverse as the city itself.

Philadelphia is a city that moves, and a city that takes pride in its dancers. In presenting Come Together, Koresh Dance Company not only unites Philadelphia’s powerful choreographers and spectacular performers; it also joins public art programs like SEPTA Art in Transit and the Mural Arts Program in celebrating dance as an integral part of Philadelphia life. Hip hop artist, photographer, and filmmaker Raphael Xavier, who returns this year to perform in his second Come Together, calls the festival “a great opportunity” for dancers with diverse areas of expertise to motivate and learn from one another’s craft. “I was inspired by other artists’ work,” Xavier comments. “It made me realize I have to keep pushing towards a high standard of performance art and dance.”

Koresh embraces the mission of highlighting local dance and cultivating new dance audiences, and developed the concept for the Come Together festival as an outgrowth of its ongoing Showcase series. Koresh Artist Showcases offer an affordable night of stellar dance several times a year. They also provide a professional performance venue at no cost to small and emerging companies. Recent Showcases have featured traditional Indian dance, ballet, salsa, contemporary, spoken word, and tap in the black box theater at 2002 Rittenhouse Square. The company renovated and moved into this studio building last year, and is currently conducting final fundraising to complete the purchase of their new home.

Since emigrating from Israel, Roni and his brother Alon Koresh, the company’s Executive Director, have been active in the Philadelphia dance scene for nearly 25 years. They both recall the generosity and artistic solidarity that furnished their early opportunities in the city—the foundational steps that led to the founding of the Koresh Dance Company and School. The Koresh brothers feel that it is their turn to contribute performance opportunities to the city’s young and innovative choreographers, and to bring its luminaries together for five dazzling nights of dance.

Participating Companies

Alchemy Dance Company, Ashley Garcia-Rameau, BalletFleming, Blythe Smith, Brian Sanders’ JUNK, Chisena Danza, DanceFusion, DanceSpora, Danse4Nia Repertory Ensemble, Derling Dance Arts, Destany Churchwell, Introspective Movement Project, Just Sole Street Dance Theatre, Koresh Dance Company, the Koresh Youth Ensemble, Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers, Nora Gibson Performance Project, Opus 1 Dance, Project Moshen, Raphael Xavier, Rennie Harris Puremovement, The Lady Hoofers Tap Ensemble, The Rock School, and Tyger B.

For the full schedule along with more information on Koresh Dance Company and participating companies, visit www.koreshdance.org.

Performance and Ticket Information

Dates & Times:
Wednesday, July 23, 7:30pm
Thursday, July 24, 7:30pm
Friday, July 25, 8pm
Saturday, July 26, 8pm
Sunday, July 27, 7pm

Location:  Suzanne Roberts Theatre, 480 S. Broad Street (Broad & Lombard), Philadelphia, PA 19146

Box Office: 215.985.0420

Prices: Individual  $35; Seniors $30; Students $25
“342” Discount – 3 shows for the price of 2: $70
Festival Pass – 5 shows for $100
Groups – 10 or more people: $25 per person; $20 per person for student gro

About Koresh Dance Company
Koresh Dance Company was founded in Philadelphia in 1991, and is widely recognized for its superb technique and emotionally-compelling appeal. It presents bi-annual home seasons as the resident dance company of the Suzanne Roberts Theatre, and has toured in over 38 states and 7 countries. The Company’s interdisciplinary foundation promotes high-speed attack and gestural diversity drawn from Graham technique, Luigi jazz, classical ballet, hip hop and Israeli folk dance. Guest choreographers including Donald Byrd (Spectrum Dance Theater), Ohad Naharin (Batsheva Dance Company), Robert Battle (Battleworks/Alvin Ailey), Itzik Galili (Galili Dance) and Paul Selwyn Norton have produced works for the company. The company currently consists of dancers Shannon Bramham, Fang-Ju Chou Gant, Joseph Cotler, Jessica Daley, Micah Geyer, Krista Montrone, Kevan Sullivan, Robert Tyler, Asya Zlatina, and Melissa Rector, who also serves as the Company’s Assistant Artistic Director. The company is supported in part by the Philadelphia Cultural Fund, Dance/USA Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, the William Penn Foundation, Pew Charitable Trusts, and the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation.

About the Koresh School of Dance, Outreach, and Community Development
The Koresh School of Dance, established in 1993, welcomes over 20,000 students every year to classes at all levels and for all ages. In 2013, Koresh Dance Company reaffirmed its commitment to Philadelphia by purchasing a property in the heart of Center City. There, the school extends dance education and performance resources to its community by presenting emerging artists in bi-monthly Koresh Artist Showcases and providing professional training and performance opportunities to the exceptional dancers of the Koresh Youth Ensemble. In 2013, Koresh launched the now annual Come Together Festival, which in its first year presented 27 companies in 11 performances over 9 days. Koresh Dance Company is committed to community-building and outreach. While on tour, the company provides post-performance discussions, residencies, open rehearsals, lecture demonstrations, master classes and video discussions to its audiences. At home, Koresh Kids Dance brings arts education to economically disadvantaged elementary-school students by partnering with Philadelphia public schools to provide free weekly dance classes, promoting children’s creativity as a conduit for non-violence and life goals.


- Steven Weisz

Founder & Editor
While not a dancer himself, Weisz’s love for the arts and dance started as a child growing up in New York City. With parents, who were strong supporters of the arts and part of a community with an incredible array of notable artists in music, dance, theater and fine arts, Weisz’s access and affinity for the performing arts took root. Upon attending college in Philadelphia at the University of Pennsylvania in the mid 70’s, Weisz started performing as a puppeteer, magician, juggler and fire eater as a means of supplementing his income. This soon grew in to what became Rainbow Promotions Inc., one of the largest entertainment and special events producers in the region. It was here that he began to promote and book dance for major events throughout the city. Many of the dancers he worked with in the early days of his company are now major choreographers in Philadelphia. At the same time, Weisz’s interest in computers and the early developments of what is now known as the Internet, led him to also start another company, Delaware Valley On Line, which became one of the first regional ISPs. It was this combination of event production, internet development and event marketing that led him to examine the use of the internet as a means to promote the arts. Dance continued to be a major interest for Weisz and in 2005 he founded PhiladelphiaDANCE.org as a major online resource to promote dance in the city. It was soon after that the Dance Journal was also founded as a way to provide an outlet for writing on a range of topics that encompass the ever growing and emerging dance community in the region. Weisz continues to run both PhiladelphiaDANCE and The Dance Journal on purely a voluntary basis with no income derived from any of his projects. He is also the Artistic Director of Graffito Works, a unique platform for dancers and performing artists to create site-specific work and to make it readily accessible to the public.

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