7/31/15

Featured Events

You may have noticed that we've changed things up with the Monkeyhouse newsletter, which we're now putting out quarterly rather than monthly. This means I'm also looking at events three months ahead of time, picking what I think will be the best of the best. I'll still do a monthly event post, with shows that don't get announced until closer to the performance date, but I thought the advance-planners among us might appreciate a spotlight post of the next 3 months. Here are my picks!

Fri, July 31 @ 8 pm
Sat, August 1 @ 8 pm
Bittersweet 
with Carey McKinley, dance theatre and Carolyn Lewenberg, sculptor
Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA, Back Bay
$15
I'm a big fan of the BCA Dance Residency program; it affords choreographers and dancers the opportunity to create stunning interdisciplinary new works. Carey McKinley has created a new work with sculptor Carolyn Lewenberg in which they will "create and ultimately destroy, an environment using bittersweet vines, bodies and moving images." I'm kind of excited by the description because even though it tells you what's going to happen I still have no idea what the piece is going to look like. Go see it if you like being surprised.

Sat, August 1 @ 8 PM
Sun, August 2 @ 2 pm
Mon & Tues, August 3 & 4 @ 7:30 pm
ECHO
B. Dunn Movement Dance & Theater Company
At the Multicultural Arts Center, Lechemere
Free!
I have a lot of feelings about this show. This is an interdisciplinary dance performance exploring the effects of displacement of black bodies from the African Diaspora of the Trans Atlantic Slave trade through generations until contemporary times. It's goal is to open a dialogue about cultural knowledge and lineage. This is the kind of dance that seeks to transform the audience far beyond the span of its time on stage. You have to reserve a seat to see the show, but it's completely free.


Presented by Beantown Tapfest
at the Arsenal Center For The Arts, Watertown
$36
Started 6 years ago by Julia Boynton, Beantown Tapfest is a week-long festival of workshops, classes, and events, including talks and student showcases, all at the Deborah Mason School of Dance in Somerville. The faculty show, featuring all the instructors from the festival, is a who's who list of amazing of tap dancers: Michelle Dorrance (NY), Josh Hilberman (Belgium), Sarah Reich (LA), Barbara Duffy (NY), Sean Fielder (Boston), Khalid Hill (NY), Ian Berg (Chicago), Rocky Mendes (Boston), Aaron Tolson (NY), Ryan P. Casey (Boston), Demi Remick (NY), companies Speaking in Taps and Boston Tap Company, and the tap-savvy jazz trio of Paul Arslanian-p, John Lockwood-b and Ron Savage-d.  

Wed - Sat, August 19-22 @ 8:15 pm
Sat & Sun, August 22 & 23 @ 2:15 pm 
Liz Gerring Dance Company
At the Doris Duke Theatre at Jacob's Pillow
$35, $25 ($19 if it's Friday and you're under 35)
Liz Gerring Dance Company performs Glacier, their evening length performance that has received glowing praise from The New York Times and the dance world at large. Winner of the 2015 Jacob's Pillow Dance Award, choreographer Liz Gerring creates beautiful, captivating work, and I expect this show to be nothing less. And a friendly reminder that Jacob's Pillow  festival ends in August, and I strongly encourage you to check out the full list of performances and the schedule of Inside/Out events, which are always free.

Fri & Sat, September 18 & 19 @ 6 pm
2015 US Championship and Provincetown Dance Trophy
Presented by Kalin Mitov
At Provincetown Town Hall, Provincetown MA
$25-$35
Thinking about an end-of-summer escape to Ptown? Check out these two same-sex partner Ballroom Dance Tournaments. The goal of these tournaments is inclusiveness, along with all the flashy costumes, thrilling footwork and incredible grace of ballroom dance. And what with the Supreme Court decision, audience and competitors alike have a little extra reason to cheer this year.

Fri & Sat, October 16 & 17 @ 8 pm 
Doug Varone and Dancers
Presented by World Music/CRASHArts
Institute for Contemporary Art Boston, Boston Waterfront
$48
Doug Varone and Dancers present, among other works, the Boston premiere of ReComposed, inspired by the pastel drawings of Joan Mitchell and set to Max Richter's newly constructed version of Vivaldi's The Four Seasons. Check out the pre-performance talks with BDA Executive Director Debra Cash, and stick around for the post-show discussion with the company on the 16th.

Tues, October 27 @ 8 pm
Thurs - Sat, October 29-31 @ 8 pm
SPEKTRʎL
Presented by Luminarium Dance
At Multicultural Arts Council, Lechemere
Monkeyhouse loves Luminarium! We got a sneak peak at their upcoming evening length work during their 5th anniversary gala, and it was as eerie and ethereal as the title implies. Don't miss it!

October 22 - November 1st
Third Symphony of Gustav Mahler, a ballet by John Neumeier 
Presented by Boston Ballet
At the Boston Opera House, Downtown Crossing
The Boston Ballet will be the first North American company to perform John Neumeier's contemporary ballet. Set to the entirety of Mahler's Third Symphony, the dance is meant to capture the intensity of the music, while using it to explore life, death, grief, beauty and love. 

7/28/15

August Events!

Fri, July 31 @ 8 pm
Sat, August 1 @ 8 pm
Bittersweet 
with Carey McKinley, dance theatre and Carolyn Lewenberg, sculptor
Calderwood Pavilion at the BCA, Back Bay
$15
I'm a big fan of the BCA Dance Residency program; it affords choreographers and dancers the opportunity to create stunning interdisciplinary new works. Carey McKinley has created a new work with sculptor Carolyn Lewenberg in which they will "create and ultimately destroy, an environment using bittersweet vines, bodies and moving images." I'm kind of excited by the description because even though it tells you what's going to happen I still have no idea what the piece is going to look like. Go see it if you like being surprised.

Sat, August 01 @ 6:30 pm
It's...A Summer Cosplay Celebration!
Presented by Penumbra:Exchange
At Arts at the Armory
$15 adult /$10 child

For anyone out there that has a costume of their favorite character, come do something awesomely nerdy with your Saturday night. This anime and video game themed costume party includes performances from several local dance companies, including Calamity Co Dance, Concept Artists, Intimations Dance, Move And Inspire, and Paradise Lost. I can't speak for everyone, but I know Paradise Lost has an amazing piece inspired by a popular video game; I also happen to be performing in it!  
Anyone in costume is automatically entered in a raffle to win prizes from local video game developers Demiurge Studios, as well as prizes from other local businesses. See you there!

Sat, August 1 @ 8 PM
Sun, August 2 @ 2 pm
Mon & Tues, August 3 & 4 @ 7:30 pm
ECHO
B. Dunn Movement Dance & Theater Company
At the Multicultural Arts Center, Lechemere
Free!

I have a lot of feelings about this show. This is an interdisciplinary dance performance exploring the effects of displacement of black bodies from the African Diaspora of the Trans Atlantic Slave trade through generations until contemporary times. It's goal is to open a dialogue about cultural knowledge and lineage. This is the kind of dance that seeks to transform the audience far beyond the span of its time on stage. You have to reserve a seat to see the show, but it's completely free.

Presented by Beantown Tapfest
at the Arsenal Center For The Arts, Watertown
$36
Started 6 years ago by Julia Boynton, Beantown Tapfest is a week-long festival of workshops, classes, and events, including talks and student showcases, all at the Deborah Mason School of Dance in Somerville. The faculty show, featuring all the instructors from the festival, is a who's who list of amazing of tap dancers: Michelle Dorrance (NY), Josh Hilberman (Belgium), Sarah Reich (LA), Barbara Duffy (NY), Sean Fielder (Boston), Khalid Hill (NY), Ian Berg (Chicago), Rocky Mendes (Boston), Aaron Tolson (NY), Ryan P. Casey (Boston), Demi Remick (NY), companies Speaking in Taps and Boston Tap Company, and the tap-savvy jazz trio of Paul Arslanian-p, John Lockwood-b and Ron Savage-d.  

Friendly reminder that Jacob's Pillow  festival ends August 31, so if you've been meaning to go, now is the time! Check out the full list of performances and the schedule of Inside/Out events, which are always free.

Wed - Sat, August 19-22 @ 8:15 pm
Sat & Sun, August 22 & 23 @ 2:15 pm 
Liz Gerring Dance Company
At the Doris Duke Theatre at Jacob's Pillow
$35, $25 ($19 if it's Friday and you're under 35)
Liz Gerring Dance Company performs Glacier, their evening length performance that has received glowing praise from The New York Times and the dance world at large. Winner of the 2015 Jacob's Pillow Dance Award, choreographer Liz Gerring creates beautiful, captivating work, and I expect this show to be nothing less. 

Wed - Sat, August 26-29 @ 8 pm
Thurs, Sat, & Sun, August 27, 29 & 30 @ 2pm
Martha Graham Dance Company
90TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION
At the Ted Shawn Theatre at Jacob's Pillow
$75, $65, $45 
($19 if it's Friday and you're under 35)
There is a part of me that gets so excited at the prospect of seeing Martha Graham's company that I found myself smiling involuntarily at the Jacob's Pillow event page: "This spectacular program includes Martha Graham's dramatic classic work Embattled Garden, Echo by Greek choreographer Andonis Foniadakis, Depak Ine by Nacho Duato, and the momentous world premiere of AXE, by the eminent choreographer Mats Ek." At least click the link to look at the photographs, which are stunning.

6/29/15

July Events!

Did you know that Cambridge and Somerville are hosting a bunch of free, outdoor events all summer? July turns out to be a great month for dance in the great outdoors, so check out these awesome free shows!  

Fri, July 10 @ 8:30 pm
Dancing In The Streets: Chun Jou Tsai
Presented by Somerville Arts Council
At City Hall Concourse, Somerville
Free!
Chun Jou Tsai, a native of Taiwan, will be presenting an original piece of work: The Dream Project.  Combining traditional Chinese long-sleeve dance technique and Western improvisational modern dance technique, the piece explores the beauty of the brushwork of Chinese calligraphy and the dream-like sentiment of a Buddhist poem.  Chinese long-sleeve dance technique is not something Americans get to see very often, so if you have the time, don't miss out.

Sat, July 11 @ 8:30 pm
Dancing In The Streets: BoSoma Dance Company
Presented by Somerville Arts Council
At Foss Park, Somerville
Free!

BoSoma Dance presents The Pursuit, Quanta, Lost It To Trying and Ex-Pired. These pieces are being developed with David Dorfman, and will explore the pressures and influences of technology on our daily lives and on our work-life balance.

Sunday, July 12 @ 11 am – 5 pm
Sandrine Schaefer
Exercises in Proximity - See/Sea
At the ICA, Boston Waterfront
Free with admission to Museum

"At the ICA, Schaefer will perform a series of ephemeral actions in and viewable from the ICA’s John Hancock Founders Gallery that engage the view and concept of an infinite horizon." Monkeyhouse has done a lot of site specific work, and I'm always interested to see ambitious performance art, so if you feel like spending a day at the ICA, this is the day to do it. She will be re-mounting the piece in August, which presents an awesome opportunity to see how a piece changes every time its performed.


Tue, July 21 @ 10 am
Summer in the City: Luminarium Dance 
Presented by Cambridge Arts 
At Bergin Park, Cambridge
Free!
Monkeyhouse loves Luminarium! The company will present an outdoor performance/class combo that's fun, family-friendly, and encourages child participation. Come to Bergin Park to get in on the fun! Luminarium is celebrating its 5th anniversary, and will be performing at The Southern Vermont Dance Festival Gala on July 17th, which is not free, but is pretty awesome! Check out the website for details.

Wed, July 22 @ 7 pm
Reach Performance: Urban and Suburban Teen Dance Program Celebrates 25th Anniversary
Presented by Boston University Dance
At Bishop Allen Drive Parking Lot, Central Square
Free!
The Reach Program allows 15 talented young Boston area dancers to spend 5 weeks working alongside a group of professional inter-generational dancers.  At this 45 minute outdoor performance, the students and the company will present original choreography in an eclectic mix of dance styles to show off what the students have learned during the summer intensive. This is a great opportunity to see young dancers grow, and maybe inspire a few young dancers in your life.

Jacob's Pillow Festival is in full swing and July is choc full of amazing artists.  I have included two of their many shows, and you should definitely check out the full list of ticketed performances and the schedule of Inside/Out events, which are always free!

Wed, July 1 - Sat, July 4 @ 8pm
Sat & Sun, July 4 & 5 @ 2pm
Dorrance Dance with Toshi Reagan and BIGLovely
Ted Shawn Theater at Jacob's Pillow
$39-$69; $19 if it's Friday and you're under 35

Monkeyhouse loves Dorrance Dance and so should you! If you couldn't see the show at ICA Boston, you're in luck! Dorrance Dance returns to Jacob's Pillow this year with their stunning show The Blues Project. And to my fellow Bostonians for whom the Fireworks on the Charles have lost their charm, I present this event as an excellent alternative for the 4th of July.

Wed, July 22 - Sat, July 25 @ 8pm
Sat & Sun, July 25 & 26 @ 2pm
Daniil Simkin's INTENSIO
Ted Shawn Theater at Jacob's Pillow
$39-$75; $19 if it's Friday and you're under 35

Featuring the stars of the American Ballet Theater, and boasting the work of four incredible choreographers, I will admit that a large reason that I want to see the show is because the cast list includes James Whiteside, formerly of the Boston Ballet, who is a beautiful dancer and a lovely human being, and Celine Cassone, from Les Ballets Jazz de Montreal. And frankly, Daniil Simkin is riveting to watch.

6/17/15

Why should you come to a Skort?

by Margaret Hagemeister

In the dictionary, a “skort” is a cross between shorts and a skirt, but in Monkeyhouse lingo a Skort is a presentation of their works in progress. I attended my first Monkeyhouse Skort last March and had no idea what to expect, so I’m about to give you some reasons why YOU should come to a Monkeyhouse Skort (or a bunch of them)!

  1. The people are great. The choreographers and performers are very open to whatever you have to say and they really appreciate your feedback. You’ll have an opportunity to give feedback in writing if you don’t want to make your comments out loud. No one will put you on the spot or call you out (so you won’t have flashbacks to your high school math class). However, you’ll probably want to get involved in the discussion because you’ll find the give and take with the participants really stimulating. 
  2. You get to be part of the creative process. Whether you know a lot about dance and choreography or know very little, you will get a chance to contribute to Monkeyhouse’s work. How exciting it is to see something that you had some input into come alive on stage in its finished form!
  3. You’ll learn a lot. Most of us go to performances with little knowledge of what goes on in the minds of the creators while they make it happen. Through the give and take of the Skort, you’ll get to know what the choreographers and performers were thinking when they made the choices they made. 
  4. You’ll have fun. You can never be sure what will happen at a Monkeyhouse skort, but you can be sure it will be fun. Kwaq, the Monkeyhouse resident canine choreographer, jumped into my arms, unsolicited, which was quite a treat. Kwaq also performed her own dance for the crowd (a piece of a Union Square donut was her motivation and her reward). 
Monkeyhouse will soon be scheduling a series of Skorts in preparation for their upcoming fall performances. Be sure that you join us!  Check out the Monkeyhouse blog for more information about last Skort.

6/5/15

June Events!

By Aisha Cruse

Fri & Sat, June 5 & 6 @ 8 pm
Sun, June 7 @ 5:30 pm
going forward...some digression
Presented by Across the Ages Dance Project
At Green Street Studios (185 Green ST Cambridge, MA)
$25

Across the Ages Dance Project is dedicated to bringing together new and established choreographers to set work on an inter-generational group of dancers. Their 5th annual concert features work by Adriane Brayton, Peter DiMuro, William McLaughlin, Lynn Modell, James Morrow and Erica Schwartz. Monkeyhouse pretty firmly believes that you should never stop dancing, and ATAD seems to wholeheartedly agree.



Sun, June 7 - Sat, June 13
Dance for World Community
Presented by Jose Mateo Ballet Theater
In and around Harvard and Central Square
Free!
The Dance for World Community festival is pretty awesome, and brings dancers from all over Boston to stages in Harvard Square for showings that are open to the public and totally free. The exact performance schedule isn't posted yet, but in the past they've had everything from Ballet to Tango to Hip-hop featuring dancers of all ages. The Festival performances are on Saturday; Sunday will have a TalkAboutDance discussion, and the Dance on Film festival will happen Monday through Thursday at 8pm. The whole thing culminates in a dance party on Mass Ave between Central and Harvard, so if you can't make anything else, at least come dance in the street!

Jacob's Pillow summer-long dance festival kicks off next week and I strongly encourage you to check out the full list of performances and the schedule of Inside/Out events, which are always free. But for June, I personally recommend:

Sat, June 13 @ 8 pm
Sun, June 14 @ 2 pm
Three Acts, Two Dancers, One Radio Host
Ted Shawn Theater at Jacob's Pillow
$45- $75, limited quantity of $19 35-and-under tickets

If you ever listen to NPR, then you've probably heard This American Life host Ira Glass. This show came to Boston last year and I unfortunately couldn't go, but if I can find my way to Jacob's Pillow I would go for this show. Dance and Radio are sort of mutually exclusive art forms, but dancers Monica Bill Barnes and Anna Bass have come together with Mr. Glass to build a show around the one place where these mediums overlap - story telling. Let them sweep you away with their humor and grace.

Fri, June 19 @ 8:30 pm
Dancing in the Streets: The Team
Presented by the Somerville Arts Council
At Conway Basketball Court (Somerville Ave & Central Street, Somerville, MA)
Free!

The Team, headed up by Michelle Marroquin, will be preforming two 20 minute pieces, Business Casual and Mammals Dancing, which they describe as "two dances about control, desire and comfort." Not gonna lie, the full descriptions are weird, but in exactly the sort of way that makes me want to go see them.
Also, this is one event in a series, so definitely check out ALL THE EVENTS because they are ALL FREE.

Fri & Sat, June 26 & 27 @ 8 pm
The Good Parts of Being Alive
Featuring Anna Reyes Dance
Presented by the BCA Dance Residency
Mills Gallery at the BCA
$15

If you've ever been to a Movement at the Mills show, you might have the barest inkling of what this evening entails. Dancer and Choreographer Anna Reyes has teamed up with Video Artist Tamara Al-Mashouk to explore how outside influences change the behavior of two people in love. The audience builds their own experience and relationship to the piece by walking through the Mills Gallery and exploring the installation and the performance from different angles, creating a completely unique, totally subjective experience. If you're drawn to immersive art, this is the show for you.

6/1/15

June Birthdays



Happy June Birthdays! 




Pat Krolak, Rita Krolak, Hjordis Blanford, Laila Fatimi, Arie Steiner Hockman, Fred Kelly, Lucie Baker, Xander Weinman, Jim Peerless, Henry LeTang, Terri Beaton, Harold Cromer, Sean Cummings, Rosie Steinberg, Nikki Felix, Shari Kaplan, Tom Christian, Bob Fosse, Elizabeth Krolak, Caleb Howe, Micheline Heal, Patrick Flynn, Melissa DollmanTyler Cantanella, Mary Sousa, Paula Abdul, and Martha Clarke  


5/27/15

Meet Taylor Corey

Taylor is one of two new board members this Spring. You may remember meeting her at Your Just Desserts where she was on the committee. We are excited for you to get to know her!

Taylor Corey is very excited to be joining Monkeyhouse as a board member! She is currently attending Wellesley College as a Pre-Medicine and Political Science major. A lifelong dancer, Taylor was a student of both Karen and Nicole during her time at Impulse Dance Center. In her spare time, Taylor can be found reading a good book or exploring museums and the arts in Boston. Taylor is thrilled to be joining an organization that works hard to make the connections between artists, dancers, and communities.

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