By Andrea Karen Hammer
The dance scene in Philadelphia showcases the best talent from international cities. With cutting-edge dance companies and compelling performances, this art form enlivens and informs the regional cultural community as well as worldwide visitors. As expressive dancers physically deliver commentary, observations and interpretations on a range of topics from social to personal issues, viewers find meaning through their stirring and sometimes provocative movement.
Annenberg Center Live Dance Series
One outstanding dance series with innovative performances is staged at The Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. In partnership with NextMove Dance, a co-presented series this season has included 11 critically acclaimed dance companies including four performing in Philadelphia for the first time. If you missed the first part of the Annenberg Center Live Dance Series, you still have a chance to experience the following:
- Dance Theatre of Harlem (March 1-2) Dance Theatre of Harlem has expanded interest in classical ballet with their stunning performances. The current program features a world premiere by Philadelphia native and resident choreographer Robert Garland. Other works, which have not previously been performed in Philadelphia, will offer dance enthusiasts new material to applaud.
- Dance Heginbotham (March 15-16) Dance Heginbotham, a contemporary dance company based in New York, makes its Philadelphia debut. Founded in 2012 by former Mark Morris Dance Group dancer and 2018 Guggenheim Fellow John Heginbotham, this ensemble quickly gained recognition for athletic, humorous and adventurous theatrical movement.
- Union Tanguera + Kate Weare Company (April 5-6) In Sin Salida, a unique blend of contemporary dance and Argentine tango by Union Tanguera + Kate Weare Company will leave viewers in awe. The full-length work by award-winning choreographer Kate Weare and Esteban Moreno of the French/Argentinean tango troupe, Union Tanguera, is an example of the ultimate creative collaboration.
- Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers (April 12-13) Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers mix Asian philosophies and Western culture in moving performances. The company’s extraordinary physicality sparks thoughts and emotions, which linger beyond any event.
- BODYTRAFFIC (April 26-27) This popular company has made its mark through a distinctive mix of contemporary dance, hip hop, jazz and ballet. Philadelphia premieres include A Million Voices, a work set to Peggy Lee classics by Pennsylvania Ballet resident choreographer and BalletX co-founder, Matthew Neenan.
- Parsons Dance (May 10-11) Celebrated for astonishing athleticism and seamless footwork, this ensemble is hailed for joy-infused contemporary dance. The exuberant dance-fan favorite will perform new works, along with the company’s signature masterpiece, Caught.
Location and Ticket Information
The Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Pennsylvania is located at 3680 Walnut Street in Philadelphia. Ticket information is available by visiting AnnenbergCenter.org, calling 215-898-3900 or requesting details at the box office.