Dallas, Texas – Dallas Black Dance Theatre (DBDT) closes its 41st season with the Spring Celebrationseries, featuring the iconic Vespers by renowned choreographer Ulysses Dove. Vespers captures the spirit of Dove’s grandmother’s soulful worship. Three world premieres including one from 16-year Broadway dance veteran and choreographer Ray Mercer are in the series scheduled for May 18-20, 2018, at the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre in Dallas.
Spring Celebration is made possible by the generous support of Norma and Don Stone, longtime DBDT benefactors and arts patrons in Dallas. The Dallas Tourism and Public Improvement District is the guest artist sponsor for the performances.
Vespers captures pure athleticism, intensity, drama, and grace at its finest. Dove’s choreography flows through six women as vessels of his grandmother’s spirit in a small wooden chapel where she and other women propelled themselves through stages of worship. Dallas Black Dance Theatre is only the fourth company to perform what is considered a masterwork for women dancers. Dove originally created the work for the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company in 1986. Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatreperformed it the following year and the Pacific Northwest Ballet premiered the dance in Seattle in 2008. DBDT premiered Vespers in Dallas in 2011.
Experience the world premiere of Ray Mercer’s Undeviated Passage, where art imitates life. Mercer credits DBDT Founder Ann Williams with giving him his first professional choreography job 14 years ago, resulting in his dance Pulse. “She took a chance by allowing me to create a work for Dallas Black Dance Theatre. It changed the course of my life,” Mercer said. Mercer has performed with Disney’s Tony Award-winning production, The Lion King, for 16 years.
Guest Artist Dark Circles Contemporary Dance goes full-blown nostalgia in Artistic Director Joshua L. Peugh’s new work Rattletrap. You will get the feel of Peugh’s childhood growing up in small town USA. Peugh and Brandon Carson, who composed the original score, are SMU alumni.
The world premiere of Face what’s facing you! by Claude Alexander III is an honest, soul-stirring exploration of how challenges can make one victorious. Building on an eight-year career at DBDT, Alexander makes his choreographic debut with this work for the full company.