Magazine article Dance Magazine

A Chance for Dance in Los Angeles?

Magazine article Dance Magazine

A Chance for Dance in Los Angeles?

Article excerpt

The distance is 137 yards--about the length of a football field. But when both the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Los Angeles Master Chorale move from the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion--their home for thirty-nine years--across the street to the Walt Disney Concert Hall, the dance world hopes run with the ball, too.

Beginning this month and running through June 2004, the Los Angeles Music Center is producing its own downtown dance season for the first time, with six North American dance companies slated to perform. And while the Pavilion is still home to the Los Angeles Opera, whose current season boasts sixty-nine performances--a 20 percent increase from last year when the hall was shared with the Philharmonic--dance audiences have every reason to be hopeful. Karen Schmidt, director of booking and presentations, is overseeing the programming.

"The past three years the Music Center has been dipping its toes in the water with dance," says Schmidt. "We initially programmed the Bolshoi, Alvin Ailey, Twyla Tharp, and Complexions; and ABT was here last year. We have been seeing what audience interests were in a dance series at the Music Center. We found the interest was extremely broad, from ballet to contemporary work."

Indeed, San Francisco Ballet kicks off the first season with seven performances, including a mixed bill and a new staging of the full-length Don Quixote, with Yuan Yuan Tan and Vadim Solomakha, above. Dance Theatre of Harlem performs in January, with two programs that include Michael Smuin's new St. Louis Woman: A Blues Ballet.

March brings the Los Angeles debut of Shen Wei Dance Arts with two contemporary works, while Alvin Alley American Dance Theater returns that same month with mixed repertory programs. …

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