Ballet X, Miro Dance offer double bill in two spaces

Posted February 9th, 2009 at 1:40 am.

Miro Dance Theatre (photo by Lindsay Browning)

As part of its season of site-specific and ‘alternative space’ performances during the renovation of historic Goodhart Hall, the Bryn Mawr College Performing Arts Series offers an unusual split bill on Friday, Feb. 13: two companies with ties to Pennsylvania Ballet that push the bounds of classical dance.

Dance troupes Ballet X and Miro Dance Theatre will perform simultaneously in Thomas Great Hall, a soaring former library space, and Erdman Hall, a modernist landmark by renowned architect Louis Kahn. Audience members will be guided in switching locations after the first performance to allow them to attend both performances. Seating is limited.

Ballet X (photo by Gabriel Bienczycki)

At 7:30 p.m., Ballet X performs “Steelworks,” an experiment with movement, space, and direction, and “Duet from Cali,” a beautiful realization of a short-lived relationship danced to Mozart, in Thomas Great Hall. The space will be converted into a small theater for the occasion.

At the same time, Miro Dance Theatre will present “Self-Portrait,” a solo work by the troupe’s artistic director, Amanda Miller, in the round at Erdman Living Room. “Self-Portrait” captures the essence of Frida Kahlo’s life and work. Performed with video artist and Pew Fellow Tobin Rothlein, it combines dance, live animation, and video.

Ballet X was founded by award-winning choreographers and former Pennsylvania Ballet members Matthew Neenan and Christine Cox. While firmly rooted in rigorous, classical ballet training and technique, Ballet X brings a contemporary sensibility to the art form, infusing its work with a new vision of athleticism, emotion, and intimacy.

“Neenan’s choreography was innovative—showing off the company’s athleticism and individual strengths—as well as visually refreshing, with strong ensemble segments and wonderful use of space and movement patterns,” says Ballet-Dance Magazine.

Miro Dance Theatre was founded in 2004 by Miller, a 10-year-veteran of the Pennsylvania Ballet, and Rothlein, whose work as video artist and visual designer for Rennie Harris Puremovement and others has garnered accolades nationally and internationally. Miro produces the work of Miller and Rothlein alongside special collaborations with invited friends and guests.

“Miro Dance Theatre delivers a mix of visual and aural brilliance and distinct choreographic signatures…exquisite composite images abound,” says The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Prior to founding their present companies, for five years Cox, Neenan, Miller, and Rothlein were all members of the Phrenic New Ballet. The program at Bryn Mawr offers the unusual chance to see the development and differing profiles of the two groups side by side.

Tickets to individual events in the Performing Arts Series are $18 for the general public, $15 for seniors, $10 for Dance Pass holders and students of other schools, $5 for children 12 and under, and free for Bryn Mawr, Haverford, and Swarthmore students, faculty, and staff. Subscription packages offer discounts, mix-and-match ticket flexibility, and priority seating. For tickets, call the Office for the Arts at 610-526-5210. For event locations, download the campus map at http://www.brynmawr.edu/campus/Map_printerfriendly.pdf. For full season info: www.brynmawr.edu/calendar/performing_arts.shtml

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