Ailey Citigroup Theater: 405 W 55th St, New York, NY 10019
27 years ago Adams Company Dance was on the first ever adjudicated bill of the American Dance Guild at the Cunningham Dance Studio. Now, ACD will again return to the festival with two talented new dancers, Payton Primer and Derick McKoy, Jr., performing “I Will Show You An Ocean,” a passionate duet about the power of the human spirit. Both dancers have such impressive resumes, so be sure to check out their sites!
The year was 1995 and Adams Company Dance was now 4 years into its inception in NYC/CT. After being accepted to the first ever adjudicated festival of the American Dance Guild at the Cunningham Studio Theater, I went into rehearsals with my new dance partner, Eddie Taketa, to teach him Colors May Bleed — a piece I had already choreographed with my previous partner, Paul Dennis, and performed twice already by that point in time. American Dance Guild was built upon a grassroots premise with their primary mission being to preserve the legacy of dance with all the components that go along with it. Honoring pioneers and dance notables were top on their list. Hosting a dance festival seemed like a good idea.
Now 27 years later, Adams Company Dance comes full circle by being accepted to another festival at the Ailey Citigroup Theater this December. I am honored to be involved and excited to see how my duet from 2007, I Will Show You An Ocean, will look on two new dancers, Payton Primer and Derick McCoy, Jr. With new talent and a festival with colleagues lined up from my past, this ought to be a unique blend of artistry that will bring me back to my roots.
Review from 1995
Colors May Bleed
This athletic duet blends the tug-of-war between society’s pressure to conform and a human’s right to freedom of choice. With original narration and a hard-driving musical score, this agitating piece depicts tolerance over fear.
It’s amazing how life changes so fast… one minute you’re on stage sweating and dancing like there’s no tomorrow, and the next minute, you’re married and have started a family! I am glowing after the news of Claire Hancock’s new baby! She has always been so remarkable in every capacity of life, and motherhood is now another feature to her mark of greatness! My fortunate times to work with her while she spent time in NYC, added to ACD’s stock of significant artistic contributions. She was just 6 years old when I originally met her in Tucson, AZ, where I did my graduate studies at the University of Arizona. Her parents were my teachers, but became fast friends with my husband and me. Their dynamic family holds a distinguished place in the dance world… and so I honor all of their efforts for not only paving the way for me, but for all those who have been touched by their mark of genius! I know I’m not alone when I say that Claire, and her mother Melissa Lowe, and father, Jory Hancock, truly are rare gems that will be continually treasured — and now we add one more gem to the mix!
Claire Hancock and composer Vincent Calianno are the creators of Two Trains. These extraordinary artists meld their expressions of movement, imagery, and sound. Be sure to visit their site!
Int/Adv Contemporary Technique will be taught in this musical, fun and kinetically charged Master Class. The warm-up emphasizes proper placement, centering and fluidity of the spine. Technically challenging movement phrases are built upon in the course of this class, allowing the exploration of a wide range of qualities, spatial patterning and rhythm. Emphasis is on the dancer as a human, not a number. Mitzi is also a board certified massage therapist, and specializes in the ancient art of Jin Shin Jyutsu. She will give tips for self-help at the end of class to aid in keeping the body in good health.
When: August 26th 7:00p-9:00p
Where: 305 W. 38th Street Ripley Grier Studios (studio 311)
MUST REGISTER BY: 8/25/2022 (Class size is limited)
Please do not bring resumes and headshots!!! They will be thrown away. You will be notified within a week of the class if you are selected.
ACD is following Ripley Grier’s COVID safety update:
Masks & Social Distancing are no longer mandated at RG, however they promise to continue their efforts to insure that their studios and hallways are fresh, clean and ventilated for your safety and peace-of-mind.
For up to the minute information about our COVID safety protocols, give them a call at (212)799-5433.
For more Info call: 203-829-4767
Working with Adams Company Dance in a project manner, dancers will be given the opportunity to keep their regular work, and add a professional company credit to their resume. Short-term projects can last from one day to several weeks, depending on the material. Current rehearsal fees are $25 per rehearsal hour, plus performance stipends — all above market value. An added bonus working with ACD, is learning tips in the ancient art of Jin Shin Jyustu within rehearsal periods, which is likened to acupuncture without the needles. ACD has been operating in the industry for 31 years, and continues to engage in concert dance, as well as creating cutting edge dance films. See more on Mitzi here.
I blinked and thirty-one years went by for Adams Company Dance. Three plus decades of a family of dancers, videographers, photographers, composers, musicians, tech people, administrators, and dozens of volunteers, all forever changing, but one thing always remained the same — the human bonds and the characteristics that make up a healthy, collective experience. There’s a higher plasticity of behavior with the company I keep. I tend to nurture and want them as part of my family, even if only for a fleeting Jiffy-Mix day. As I look back upon all the parts that made the whole of ACD, I bow to the many faces that occupied the pages I turned on the calendar, from year-to-year.
I have loved my playground of dance, whether it be for stage or film, which has been informed by all sources of inspiration. It’s all the ingredients that mix into the recipe, including the process of blending, pulsing, and chopping, that determine the outcome of a work. Have they all been miniature pearls of exquisite delicacy? No, but after all these years, I’ve come to realize that that does not matter. What does matter, and what keeps the fire burning, is simply to keep plugging in the blender, and inviting company to sit and be part of what’s being served up. With every passing new year, there’s bound to be a little shakin’ going on! Stay tuned for more sharing!
This time honored solo is worth a replay on Mother’s Day. This special piece I choreographed on myself after my mother died, has been one of my sweet gems in my repertiore. It was uniquely crafted to include a narrative about a dream my mother had where she saw me dancing with a red chair on stage, and a dream I had about my mother dying. My mother and I shared our dreams with another back in 1994, and then just weeks later, she passed away. I entrusted this dance to the exquisite, Julie Fiorenza, in our “Going Solo” Concert in Brooklyn in 2019. She brought everything to the table in her performance. It’s with great honor I share this theatrical display of beauty, and sheer emotion with you, as Julie graces the stage. Happy Mother’s Day!
Enough Said, our new film short, has reached its completion! Paulo Gutierrez, my dancer extraordinaire, poured out his heart and soul into this work. The tattoo on his right arm caught my husband’s eye upon viewing the first draft. “We Can Be Heroes,” it says — a symbolic message dropped in my lap, exemplifying the emotion at the center of my heart. This project seeped out of me as I was editing. As mentioned in my last blog post, our day-shoot in February worked its magic with what seemed like a fairy dust sprinkling of creativity. Tareek Jones, a talented new editor that came on board with me at the end of last year, has been steady pulling levers and making my vision appear before my eyes. I was surprised at how quickly the process went, even with one of our sessions working remotely. I’ll allow you to interpret as you may, as to what the meaning is, but if you’ve followed my prior posts, I assure you, you’ll be on my same page. Enough said.
In February, when the ground is frozen, and the chill in the air makes a person want to stay inside, the seeds of something new seem to simmer within me. So, year after year, you’ll see that this is when I’ll typically skip into the studio, eager with inspiration.
Last month was no exception. Paulo Gutierrez, a strong, passionate dancer, happened to be free when I asked him if he wanted to do this project. I had worked with Paulo over the past five years, and knew I could trust his artistry to skillfully script our day together at 520 8th Avenue, (Ripley-Grier Studios) — one of my favorite haunts through the ages. I had in mind to book several studios that day within the building, all with a different color scheme, to add a little texture to our footage. With little material to go on ahead of time, we waltzed through the day, as if I had a great plan. Perhaps I was more reliant on my intuition and spontaneity, trusting that what would be, would be.
After sliding, falling, jumping and climbing upon a grande piano, and dancing through every inch of the spaces where we we visited, the day ended in a dismal back stairwell, where we got our final shots. It felt like we were on a wild ride, exposing the most vulnerable to the most brazen parts of ourselves. This was personal, yet somewhere within the fairy dust of what we created, was a deep message shared by humanity — I look forward to sharing this message soon, once our editing waltz reaches the last measure!
This is my yearly opportunity to share our piece with you, Undisclosed Recipients: A Tribute to MLK, Jr. The power of Martin Luther King’s words are as needed today, as they were during the Civil Rights Movement. We are losing grip of justice and equality in our country, and it is vital that we remember the “dream!”
Please enjoy this dance tribute to Dr. King on this auspicious day~