Dance Weekend: Ballet, Broadway, Bharatanatyam

Portland dance, you are feeling so grown up now!

This is a BIG week. Ballet to Postmodern, Bharatanatyam to Broadway, new dance, big dance, dance composers and dance filmmakers. It’s all happening right here in Portland this week. Is our little city growing? This feels like a big city week to me. Lots to celebrate and see. Can you make it to all of the events? I would love to know.

The Tempos

The Tempos

Dance Wire
May 12
Polaris Dance Theatre, 1501 SW Taylor St.
Refinery, a work in progress showing, is the latest in DanceWire’s many outreach programs connecting the Portland dance community and featuring DanceWire members, The Tempos, Eliza Larson, Moxie Dance Company and Alicia Cutaia. This will be an informal showing that includes an audience feedback session and a potluck.

OBT/25 Retrospective
Oregon Ballet Theater
May 2-June 14
Multnomah County Central Library, Collins Gallery, 801 SW 10th Ave.
Located in the Collins Gallery at the Central Multnomah County Library, this exhibit, curated by Oregon Ballet Theater’s dance Historian Linda Besant, showcases memorabilia from the last twenty-five years, featuring highlights from both the James Canfield and Christopher Stowell eras as well as the company’s more recent achievements under the new leadership of Kevin Irving. Costumes, sets, photography and other artifacts are on exhibit.

The Phantom Of The Opera
May 13-23
Keller Auditorium, 222 SW Clay St.
Originally produced in London’s West End in 1986, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s famous story of a beautiful soprano obsessed with a mysterious disfigured musical genius is now on a US tour and has landed here in Portland, with new choreography by Scott Ambler.

Philip Glass
in Conversation with Christopher Mattaliano
Powell Books
May 14
Newmark Theatre, Antoinette Hatfield Hall at 1111 SW Broadway Ave.
A favorite of dancers and choreographers worldwide, Philip Glass is a musician and composer known in the dance world for his collaborations with many kinds of artists and notably with post modern choreographer Lucinda Childs and Roberta Wilson on his opera, Einstein on the Beach. Glass has written a memoir, Words without Music, and he’ll be joined onstage by Christopher Mattaliano, general director of Portland Opera for a conversation about Glass’s life in music. Price of admission includes a copy of Words without Music.


PICA’s 20th Anniversary Gala Ball and After Party
May 16
The Redd, 831 SE Salmon St.
PICA  (Portland Institute For Contemporary Art)  is celebrating its 20th anniversary and 20 years of bringing experimental and contemporary dance to Portland audiences. To celebrate they are bringing back the infamous Dada Ball. Inspired dress and costume encouraged.

Pure Surface #16
Ajna Lichau (film) / Endi Bogue Hartigan (text) / Dawn Stoppiello (dance)
May 17
Valentine’s, 232 SW Ankeny St.
Curated by Stacey Tran and Danielle Ross, Pure Surface is a new performance series where movement, text, and film happen together in the spirit of improvised collaboration. This weeks performance will feature movement artist Dawn Stoppiello, writer Endl Bogue and filmmaker Ajna Lichau.

Jayanthi Raman Dance Company
May 17
Winningstad Theatre, Antoinette Hatfield Hall, 1111 SW Broadway
Jayanthi Raman, a critically acclaimed Bharatha Natyam dancer, choreographer and recent author of two books on the history and technique of Indian Dance, presents an evening of Indian dance, music, and theatre through the telling of 2500-year-old folk tales from the Panchatantra. Leaping monkeys, beautiful peacocks, elegant swans, crocodiles, and dancing snakes will fill the stage.

Feelings are Facts: The Life of Yvonne Rainer
Portland Queer Documentary Film Festival
May 16
Hollywood Theatre, 4122 NE Sandy Blvd
Part of Portland’s Queer Documentary Film Festival previewed by Lily Hudson for Arts Watch:  “Jack Walsh’s documentary Feelings are Facts: The Life of Yvonne Rainer begins with a dance: Trio A. In footage from 1978, Rainer performs her own 1966 choreography, now considered a hallmark example of postmodern dance. It feels casual, improvisational, fragmented, not defined by physical virtuosity but by small, modest movements. It subverts the body’s “natural” inclinations at every turn. If the body naturally wants to step out of a particular phrase, Trio A drives it to collapse; if the body wants to move swiftly through a gesture, Trio A deliberately slows it. A dancer in Yvonne’s company describes it as “choreography as theory” and “a leveling of Western Dance history.” Director Jack Walsh and producer Christine Murray will be in attendance.

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