Area Choreographers Festival | Jun 7 + 8, 2019

Area Choreographers Festival
FRIDAY, June 7, 2019 8:00pm
SATURDAY, June 8, 2019 8:00pm
Aronoff Center for the Arts, Cincinnati, Ohio


Area choreographers for the 2019 shows will be:  Corrinne Bailey; David Choate; Kent De Spain; Diane Germaine; The MCRC Project: Joan Ferrante/Donna Grisez and Renee McCafferty; and MamLuft&Co. Dance / Jeanne Mam-Luft.

Contemporary Dance Theater’s 2018-19 Season will conclude with its presentation of the Area Choreographers Festival on June 7 and 8, 2019.  Six local choreographers will bring new choreography to the Aronoff Center’s Jarson-Kaplan stage.

“THE JOURNEY” is the title of choreographer & poet Diane Germaine’s new work. It is taken from the poem by the same name by Mary Oliver, the recently deceased Pulitzer prize winning poet (1935-2019).   This premiere includes the live reading of seven of Oliver’s poems, with solos performed by six Cincinnati dancers.  The work is wholly existential, sensitive, lyric and haunting and will have visuals by Diane Germaine in projections designed in collaboration with videographer John Burgess.   Along with “The Journey,” other poems by Oliver included are “Wild Geese,” “When Death Comes,” and “The Whistler”.  Music includes pieces by Meridith Monk, Schubert, Robert Gass, and Carlos Nakai.  Dancers will be Juanita Araque-Feil,* Dominic Barrett,* Alexandra Brannon*, Abby Kay,* Jessica Tatum,* and Kate Stark.  *Denotes soloists appearing courtesy of De La Dance Company.

Corrinne Bailey will present a duet, “Label Me Not”, with Jon Lawson.  This piece highlights the material things in our pop culture that influence us and shape our identity such as popular brands, social media platforms, and other contexts that create categories and label individuals as something that they may not identify with.  It explores willingness to conform to popular ideas and expectations, rather than freely expressing unique selves and identities.

“Let Our Loss Be Heard” revises, re-imagines and recasts a work originated by NKU School of the Arts students in collaboration with The Mourning the Creation of Racial Categories Project.  It tells the story of Robert and Margaret Garner and her four children, an enslaved family living in Richwood, Kentucky.  The choreography, accompanied by specially commissioned music and live singing, explores how our understanding of race in the United States is strengthened with the telling of this tragic story.  Featured dancers are Darnell Pierre Benjamin, Maiya Caldwell, Hannah Duvall, Ian Timothy Forsgren, and Lavette Patterson. Choreographic consultants are Renee McCafferty and Sam Theders in collaboration with sociologists Joan Ferrante and Lynnissa Hillman.

Choreographer Kent de Spain will be dancing with his wife, Leslie Dworkin, in “Elegy”.  “Elegy” is a duet that unfolds in slow motion. Set to an evocative score by Arvo Pärt, the piece explores the invisible tethers that hold two people together, and builds from simple gestures to an intense catharsis while showing tender moments of support and persistence.

Jeanne Mam-Luft will choreograph a piece that will be set on workshop participants of Mam-Luft&Co.’s summer intensive.

Choreographer David Choate’s work, “Human Condition”, asks us to recognize ourselves in both the best and worst of humanity. Who is good or bad, right or wrong?  Is there a them and us, or can we work and live together as humans?

See the ACF Press Release HERE.

The Area Choreographers Festival supports local artists and provides audiences a diverse variety of incredible dance, all of it new to Cincinnati!  Don’t miss this opportunity to support the dancers and choreographers working in our hometown.

Q&A after the show

Join us after the Saturday night show for a Q & A time with the choreographers to find out more about how each dance was created.

Open Masterclasses


Dancers, don’t miss these incredible opportunities to take an open community masterclass with an ACF choreographers Corrinne Bailey and Jon Lawson at Contemporary Dance Theater’s studios in College Hill

Open Community Masterclass: Saturday, June 8, 2019 from 10:30am-12:00pm. $15 in advance payable here, or $19 or $20 at the door.

Lecture/Demonstrations & Outreach


Early Bird Savings
$30.50 Orchestra & Balcony I
$26 Balcony II & Box Seats
$26 Seniors, any seats
$21.50 Students, any seats
Single Tickets
$34 Orchestra & Balcony I
$29 Balcony II & Box Seats
$29 Seniors, any seats
$24 Students, any seats
Aronoff Center for the Arts, Jarson-Kaplan Theater
650 Walnut Street, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202  |  (513) 621-ARTS 

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The Contemporary Dance Theater Guest Artist Series is sponsored by THE OTTO M. BUDIG FAMILY FOUNDATION and is supported by the thousands of people who give generously to the ArtsWave Community CampaignSupport also comes from the National Endowment for the Arts, a public agency dedicated to supporting excellence in the arts, both new and established; bringing the arts to all Americans; and providing leadership in arts education. Contemporary Dance Theater is also supported by The Ohio Arts Council, a state agency that supports public programs in the arts.