by Karen Krolak
Alonzo King's LINES Ballet /San Francisco, CA /$50,000 -
On my recent trip to San Francisco, my first stop was the former Odd Fellows Hall on the corner of 7th and Market. This eccentric building with its antiquated elevator is the home of Alonzo King's LINES Ballet and the San Francisco Dance Center. I am always amused by the tendency for Odd Fellows buildings to evolve into dance spaces, e.g. the Dance Complex in Cambridge, MA.
Flamenco rhythms echoed off the walls and girls with taut hairdos raced to get to a ballet class as I searched for the room where Anne Bluethenthal was rehearsing. Each week hundreds of recreational and professional dancers from a wide range of disciplines study, choreograph, and rehearse in these six quirky studios. Though my contact with this organization was brief, I am awed by Alonzo King's dedication to the larger Bay Area dance community. Is it any wonder that Monkeyhouse's 2008 summer intern, Gaby Mervis listed him as one of her favorite choreographers?