After more than a year and a half of dance events being canceled or relocated online due to COVID-19, some Pittsburgh organizations are restarting live performances. Whether you like ballet or something more contemporary, the rest of 2021 and into 2022 will offer stages packed with legendary interpretations and debuts at locations around the city.
Confluence Ballet will soon begin its season opener. But before that, the young Pittsburgh company will host Sips Soirée, a fundraiser at Dreadnought Wines that will help the company achieve their objective to build a high caliber, varied, and inclusive ballet company that prioritizes the experiences and well-being of its artists. Wine tastings and drinks, as well as giveaways, will be part of the event.
The nonprofit group, which Moselle Haney started in 2020 as Confluence Dance Theatre, plans to explode onto the Pittsburgh dance scene in November. It plans to stage Emergence at the Pittsburgh Playhouse. There will be a new version of Durante Verzola’s Firebird, Spirited Syncopations and a brand new show by Dan Karasik.
The August Wilson African American Cultural Center will host two more performances to round out the season. Versatile Voices, including Sur le Fil by Grand Rapids Ballet director Penny Saunders, will be performed at the venue in March 2022. This will be followed in May 2022 by productions of two masterpieces, Carmen and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Texture Contemporary Ballet 2021-2022 Season
The company will return to the stage in the upcoming season. Texture artistic and executive director Alan Obuzor promises a combination of classic and new works. Including one that looks at different methods of manipulating shadows and light. There will also be one featuring the music of rapper Macklemore.
The Pittsburgh dance group launched its season on July 29 at South Park Amphitheater. It will return to the venue on August 29 to premiere a new piece by dancer Madeline Kendall. Kendall was inspired by surrealist artist Salvador Dali, according to the Texture website. The evening will also include extracts from Laurie Blue, a 2016 production by Obuzor and Kelsey Bartman. As well as sections from Christopher Bandy’s Tom Waits-inspired performance ‘Til the wheels fall off.
Texture will also return to its main performance location, the New Hazlett Theater, in November for In the Light and April 2022 for Reimagine. In the Light features new and old pieces, including Eclipse. This is set to the late singer/songwriter Eva Cassidy’s stirring melodies. Texture’s season will conclude with Reimagine.
Returning there has gives them the sensation of coming home after being gone for too long. The feelings of anticipation, eagerness, familiarity, emotions, and more are all involved. The connection and wonderful moments that may occur between performers and live audiences are unparalleled.
Pittsburgh Dance Council 2021-2022 Season
The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announced recently that the Pittsburgh Dance Council will be celebrating its 51st anniversary. It is planned to be celebrated with a series of performances beginning in November.
Randal Miller, the Trust’s director of dance programming and special projects, promised in a press release that the upcoming season would feature a diversity of artists to enthrall, communicate, question, and reframe the community’s understanding of the content of these works and dance as an art form.
The 51st season will showcase some of America’s most established and respected movement performers alongside emerging international companies. Audiences can expect major, open-air, and site-specific work.
The program includes musicians whose concerts were canceled because of the epidemic. But also numerous new ones, including two U.S. premieres.
The season begins with An Untitled Love; a collaboration between Pittsburgh resident Kyle Abraham and his group A.I.M and the Kelly Strayhorn Theater. The piece, which will be performed at the Byham Theater, is described as borrowing from the repertoire of best-selling R&B singer D’Angelo. It pays respect to the nuances of self-love and Black love; while also acting as a pounding mixtape honoring culture, family, and community.
Other highlights include Motionhouse; a UK-based firm that specializes in ambitious projects that integrate physicality, strong narrative, and an expressive soundtrack, drawing inspiration from common human worries and the relationship to the environment. Motionhouse dancers will demonstrate their power and agility while dancing on a range of construction trucks for the United States debut of Torque. This will take place during the 2022 Three Rivers Arts Festival.
The Pittsburgh Dance Council will also be showing the US premieres of BLKDOG by another UK collective, Far From The Norm. There will also be Complexions Contemporary Ballet’s Bach 25 and Woke, a contemporary, multi-genre take on Johann Sebastian Bach.