Ronald K. Brown – Evidence in Dance and the Spirit at Bryn Mawr College on February 26


The Bryn Mawr College Performing Arts Series presents Ronald K. Brown / Evidence in Dance and the Spirit on Friday, February 26, 8:00pm in the McPherson Auditorium at Goodhart Hall. Brown founded the Brooklyn-based Evidence in 1985.  His critically-acclaimed choreography incorporates modern dance, West African movement vocabularies, Afro-Caribbean dance and contemporary urban dance to promote understanding of the African diaspora through dance and storytelling.

The program for Dance and the Spirit features The Subtle One, Brown’s recent collaboration with renowned jazz pianist Jason Moran, paired with Brown’s signature work, Grace. The Subtle One explores the mystic and inspirational relationship between spiritual beings and the society they inhabit.  The title, which refers to the creator, derives from one of the many names of Allah.  In Arabic “the subtle one” means “the one who whispers things into existence.”  The dancers and the music impact each other with this softness, with performers moving as “subtle ones,” affecting one another and the audience as they perceive the world. Originally choreographed for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Grace weaves the story of a goddess’ journey to earth to spread grace among humans, ultimately welcoming them to heaven.

“In my work, I examine the role of the body in worship, spiritual practice and belief systems.  I want to create something in which people recognize themselves and see the human condition, rather than focusing on dancers and their physicality,” explained Brown.

“Brown’s distinctive style, drawing on African, Caribbean and American dance idioms, uses movement as a way to acquaint audiences with the beauty of traditional African forms and rhythms,” continued Lisa Kraus, curator of Bryn Mawr College Performing Arts Series.  “His works are exuberantly relevant and upliftingly spiritual without being pedantic or pious. He provides a unique view of human experience though danced journeys of identity and community.”

Bryn Mawr College is located at 101 N. Merion Avenue in Bryn Mawr, PA. Flex subscriptions to the remaining series events are available for $90 each, $75 for seniors. Tickets to individual events in the Bryn Mawr Performing Arts Series are $20, $18 for seniors over 65, $10 for students with ID and Dance Pass holders, and $5 for children under 12. Tickets, subscriptions and more information are available online through Brown Paper Tickets, at or by calling 610-526-5210. Group sales are available by calling 610-526-5210.

Ronald K. Brown has worked with Mary Anthony Dance Theater, Jennifer Muller/The Works and other choreographers and artists.  Brown has set works on Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Ailey II, Cleo Parker Robinson Ensemble, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, Jennifer Muller/The Works, Jeune Ballet d’Afrique Noire, Ko-Thi Dance Company,  Philadanco, Muntu Dance Theater of Chicago and Ballet Hispanico, and has collaborated with such artists as composer/designer Omotayo Wunmi Olaiya, the late writer Craig G. Harris, director Ernie McClintock’s Jazz Actors Theater, choreographers Patricia Hoffbauer and Rokiya Kone, and composers Robert Een, Oliver Lake, Bernadette Speech, David Simons, and Don Meissner.  He choreographed Regina Taylor’s award-winning play, Crowns and won an AUDELCO Award for his work on that production.  Brown has won a Fred & Adele Astaire Award for Outstanding Choreography in the Tony winning The Gershwin’s Porgy & Bess, adapted by Suzan Lori Parks.  In addition Brown was named Def Dance Jam Workshop Mentor of the Year in 2000 and has received a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts Choreographers Fellowship, New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, United States Artists Fellowship, and The Ailey Apex Award for teaching.

***photo provided courtesy of The Bryn Mawr College Performing Arts Series

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