Celebrate Dance 2011

Produced by Jamie Nichols Saturday March 12th, 2011 at the Alex Theatre, Glendale, California

Celebrate Dance, the esteemed Los Angeles dance festival which has played to full houses at The Alex Theatre the last three years is just around the corner. Mark your calendars for Saturday March 12th. You don't want to risk being among those hunting down tickets at the last minute for what promises to be another exciting and wide ranging evening of dance. This year's program of dance will bring two out of town companies, Malashock Dance from San Diego and Creative Outlook Dance Theatre of Brooklyn, to share the Alex Theatre stage with six Los Angeles based companies in an evening of mixed genre dance.

Producer Jamie Nichols has been a tireless promoter for dance in Los Angeles and with Celebrate Dance has developed a program that not only gives established and unknown companies a chance to be produced in a first rate venue but also has developed an audience that reaches beyond the down town art scene to include a crowd that is as eclectic as the companies themselves. The March, 12th program will include a mix of ballet, jazz, contemporary and modern dance and will bring back Eileen Cooley as lighting designer and production manager. Her lighting designs for Celebrate Dance have garnered numerous awards and recognition. The historic Alex Theatre, which has hosted the concert series since its inception in 2006, has proven to be just the right sort of venue with an ambience and technical capacity perfectly suited for concert dance. From the theatre courtyard, to the lively mezzanine bar, to the diverse program itself, everything about being there for a concert sizzles.

The evening will be a homecoming of sorts for Malashock Dance choreographer and Associate Artistic Director Michael Mizerany. Mizerany, who will present Tethered on the Celebrate Dance program, was a mainstay of the Los Angeles modern dance scene in the 90s and was frequently recognized for his dancing and choreography in numerous self-produced works. He has danced with Loretta Livingston & Dancers and the Lewitzky Dance Company. Artistic Director John Malashock will present his choreography in Everybody Knows with music by Leonard Cohen. Malashock Dance, which has an active national touring schedule and a lively presence on the San Diego dance scene, has not been seen in Los Angeles since in 1998. This is your chance to catch one of the country's best modern dance ensembles.

Creative Outlook Dance Theater of Brooklyn will be presenting Prize with choreography by company Artistic Director Jamel Gaines. Gaines has recently appeared on So You think You Can Dance as a guest choreographer and is currently working on the British version of the television franchise. His choreography which laces together contemporary and African movement will focus on shifting perceptions and roles in society.  Prize is a Celebrate Dance premiere.

Sophie Monat, Artistic Director of Monat Dance brings her take on contemporary ballet with Beyond the Edge, set to music by Bach and Handel. The piece was seen in 2010 as a finalist in Dance Under the Stars. Bringing a theatrical take on the jazz ballet genre will be Macarena Gandarillas and Visions Dance Theatre. Those who saw her powerful choreography in Always Remember… Never to Forget (Celebrate Dance 2010) ,which has been nominated for several Lester Horton Awards, will want to be on hand for the Los Angeles premiere of her Twist of Fate with music by Greek contemporary composer, Vassilis Tsabropoulos. Terri Best Dance will present Threshold, an intimate duo that limns the fragile membrane between sleep and waking. BARE Dance Company under Artistic Director Mike Esperanza will present a full company ensemble in Unoccupied. The choreography is based on the big band lounge music sound of Pink Martini. Both Best and Esperanza will be conducting dance residencies at Hollywood's Bancroft-Howe Magnet School under a generous gift provided by the Flourish Foundation which will also bring 100 students to see the performance. Also on the program are Regina Klenjoski Dance Company and Deborah Rosen and Dancers. Both companies will be exploring personal and social themes using new music composed especially for Celebrate Dance premieres.

For Nichols, the Celebrate Dance brand is all about generosity. Moving companies forward, and seeing local companies prosper is at the heart of her mission. The growing recognition and deserved prestige of this festival has established Celebrate Dance as a meeting place for the best of Los Angeles' vibrant dance companies. Nichols' savvy sense of timing and intuition in her programming continue to bring new audiences to the Alex Theatre and new dance to Los Angeles. Don't miss it!

Tickets can be purchased through the Alex Theatre. Click here.

DancePlug will be on hand to cover the evening with interviews of choreographers, special invitees and lively pre-show commentary from the Alexander Terrance bar on the Celebrate Dance buzz. The Dish will have it all, including video coverage from the Alex Theatre stage. Stay plugged in, it is going to be an eventful evening of concert dance.