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SEASON ANNOUNCEMENTS

Brigham Mosley and Janielle Kastner

2020 for the Elevator Project

AT&T Performing Arts Center's fifth season has eight works of theater, dance, and music.



published Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Photo: Indique
Indique Dance Company

 

Dallas — The 2020 season for the Elevator Project — AT&T Performing Arts Center’s popular series that brings in smaller, independent performing arts groups to perform at its spaces — has been announced. Of this year’s eight selections, one returns from the most recent Elevator Project season (Indique Dance Company), two others have been in the series before (American Baroque Opera Company and theatermaker Jake Nice), and the other five will make their series debut: choral outfit Verdigris Ensemble, interdisciplinary group Das Blumelein Project, dance companies Flamenco Fever and B. Moore Dance, and Dallas playwrights Janielle Kastner and Brigham Mosley. The latter duo is presenting a play about journalism that they’ve been working on, shadowing journalists at the Dallas Morning News.

“In other cities, performing arts centers don’t always have this kind of symbiotic relationship with local arts groups,” says ATTPAC President and CEO Debbie Storey.

Storey says that for this fifth season of the Elevator Project, there were 43 submissions — the highest number yet. The selection process is narrowed down by a panel of local arts leaders and performers, with an emphasis on new works, but also considering diverse genres, styles, artists and subject matter; use of performance space (all of this year’s groups are in the Winspear Opera House’s Hamon Hall or the Wyly Theatre’s Sixth Floor Studio Theatre).

If selected, the groups get the benefit of space, ATTPAC’s marketing power, and in some cases mentoring and working with a full-time production team that the center has. No group can be selected for more than two consecutive seasons.

“It does come down to really hard choices; we think the curation aspect of this is very important,” Storey adds. “Some of our ATTPAC subscribers [to the Broadway and other series] have subscribed to the Elevator Project works and have been introduced to groups they didn’t know about before.” She notes that some patrons even bought tickets to all eight shows in one season.

Two of the biggest successes in recent years, Storey says, are Cry Havoc Theater Company and Dark Circles Contemporary Dance. Cry Havoc Artistic Director Mara Richards Bim, who was on this year’s Elevator Project selection panel, reports that her group’s two entries in the Elevator Project, 2018’s Babel and 2019's Sex Ed, resulted in 319 new patrons buying a ticket for a second Cry Havoc show, and 40 of those bought a ticket to a third CHTC event.

Dark Circles, on the other hand, needed to find a space for its upcoming production of Pete: A New Musical, and because of its relationship with ATTPAC and two previous hits in the Elevator Project, was able to work a deal co-presenting Pete with ATTPAC. The performances are Sept. 12-15 in Hamon Hall.

“This experience has provided a totally novel platform for our mission — allowing us to share the ancient Indian art of Bharatanatyam with a modern audience, in a beautiful and intimate space,” says Latha Shrivasta, co-founder of Indique Dance Company. “We have only grown more confident in our artistry and successfully increased our audience base, both within and outside of the local Indian community.”

As with last year, ticket buyers can get Elevator Project tickets in packages. Each show is $25; but with the purchase of four or more, that changes to $22.75 and there’s an additional discounted parking option of $5 per show.

Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Sept. 3, 2019, and will be available online at www.attpac.org, by telephone at 214-880-0202 or in person at the AT&T Performing Arts Center Winspear Opera House Box Office at 2403 Flora Street. The Box Office is open 10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and before performances – closed Saturdays and Sundays.

Below is the complete lineup for the 2020 Elevator Project, followed by the 2020 Advisory Review Panel.

 

THE ELEVATOR PROJECT – 2020 SEASON

 

Jake Nice

Slide By, a new play by Thomas Ward (10 performances)

Wyly Theatre – Studio Theatre Level 6

Synopsis:
"It’s the week after the Columbine shootings and Chad Squier is subbing at his former high school amidst threats of a copycat attack. Once the state wrestling champ and big man on campus, Chad is now adrift in his twenties, living at home, and carrying the guilt of a suicide that happened his senior year. After learning that most of the teachers have stayed home and the rest of them might be armed (the result of a “hush-hush” district meeting), Chad tries to make it through the day unscathed. With the help of his best friend Dave, a drug-dealing janitor, and a new sub named Susan, Chad must face his anger at a mentor who betrayed him, as well as his troubling admiration for the Columbine shooters."

Performance Schedule:

Thursday, January 16, 2020; 7:30 p.m.

Friday, January 17; 8 p.m.

Saturday, January 18; 2 p.m. & 8 p.m.

Sunday, January 19; 2 p.m.

Thursday, January 23; 7:30 p.m.

Friday, January 24; 8 p.m.

Saturday, January 25; 2 p.m. & 8 p.m.

Sunday, January 26; 2 p.m.

 

American Baroque Opera Company

The Elements (three performances)

Hamon Hall – Winspear Opera House

Synopsis:

American Baroque Opera Co. (ABOC), in partnership with Ballet Dallas, will present a new work titled “The Elements” which will combine rarely heard instrumental and vocal music of the baroque with modern ballet, highlighting the exciting collaborative possibilities with the Elevator Project.

American Baroque Opera Co. (ABOC), in partnership with Ballet Dallas, will present “The Elements” which will combine rarely heard instrumental and vocal music of the baroque with modern ballet. The American Baroque Opera Co., as part of its mission to bring to life little-known musical gems of the baroque, will reintroduce this music to modern audiences. Joining us will be the Ballet Dallas, which uses the language of ballet and contemporary dance to present ballet as a progressive and innovative art form. Together we will perform this new work February 13-15 in Harmon Hall at the Winspear Opera House.

The music for this new ballet is comprised of music from two different composers of the baroque. A reconstruction of Jean-Fery Rebel’s Symphony “Les Elemens” and selections from Richard Delalande’s opera of the same name will serve as the music for this new ballet. Rebel’s Symphony, begins with a startling surprise - ‘Chaos’ - a musical representation of the beginning of the world and the forging of the elements. This music, considered to be harmonically daring and avant-garde even in the 21st century will challenge its listeners idea of what baroque music is: not just an old relic of music, but living, breathing art. When combined with modern ballet, this art can be fully appreciated.

Performance Schedule:

Thursday, February 13, 2020; 7:30 p.m.

Friday, February 14; 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, February 15; 7:30 p.m. 

 

Photo: Verdigris
Verdigris Ensemble

Verdigris Ensemble

Dust Bowl (three performances)

Hamon Hall – Winspear Opera House

Synopsis:

Who has given to me this sweet

And given my brother dust to eat?

And when will his wage come in?

—William Vaughn Moody, "Gloucester Moors"

A man-made environmental disaster, the Dust Bowl began in 1931 and lasted for almost a decade, displacing entire populations in the southern plains region of the United States. Constant droughts, bug infestations, and increasingly dangerous living conditions left farmers with one guarantee: dust. "Dust to eat and dust to breathe and dust to drink. Dust in the beds and in the flour bin, on dishes and walls and windows, in hair and eyes and ears and teeth and throats."

Setting texts exclusively from newspaper articles, diaries, and first-hand oral accounts of survivors, Dust Bowl pieces together nearly a decade of human struggle, hopefulness, and perseverance in the face of constant catastrophe. From fatal dust pneumonia to plagues of jackrabbits and grasshoppers, the performances of the Dust Bowl are honest and raw.

In collaboration with bluegrass band, video projection, and choreographed movement, Verdigris Ensemble world premieres stories of that time period through previously unexplored mediums and asks the question: how did this happen and have we learned from our mistakes?

Projections by Ariana Zhang

Music by Anthony J. Maglione

Libretto by Ron Witzke and Sam Brukhman

Conceived and directed by Sam Brukhman

Performance Schedule:

Thursday, February 27, 2020; 7:30 p.m.

Friday, February 28; 8 p.m.

Saturday, February 29; 8 p.m.

 

Janielle Kastner and Brigham Mosley

Playwrights in the Newsroom (10 performances)

Wyly Theatre – Studio Theatre Level 6

Synopsis:

Playwrights in the Newsroom is an immersive, theatrical experience orchestrated by two playwrights who’ve spent hundreds of hours shadowing The Dallas Morning News. Playwrights Brigham Mosley and Janielle Kastner are fairly literate people (or so they thought) who, until recently, got their news from Buzzfeed and/or Twitter. When given the opportunity to immerse themselves in the newsroom at The Dallas Morning News to write a play about journalism, these fiction-writing story-embellishers are faced with a new mandate: seek the truth and report it. Their theatrical mission is simple: Figure out what journalism is, why it matters, who we trust to tell us “what happened?” and also, along the way, maybe save democracy. No sweat!

Performance Schedule

Thursday, March 5, 2020; 7:30 p.m.

Friday, March 6; 8 p.m.

Saturday, March 7; 2 p.m. & 8 p.m.

Sunday, March 8; 2 p.m.

Thursday, March 12; 7:30 p.m.

Friday, March 13; 8 p.m.

Saturday, March 14; 2& 8 p.m.

Sunday, March 14; 2 p.m.

 

Flamenco Fever

Memorias Flamencas (three performances)

Wyly Theatre – Potter Rose

Synopsis:

“Memorias Flamencas” comes to us as part of Ida y Vuelta’s Flamenco Fusion Series.  Since 2016 Julia Alcantara has been co-producing with various companies in an effort to expand and educate the flamenco fan base in DFW.  Each concert was an enlightening and entertaining experience for the cast and audience alike. Now she is pleased to introduce the father of Flamenco Jazz, Jorge Pardo to Dallas, courtesy of the “Elevator Project”, who is assisting in its production.

A longtime fan of Flute/Sax player/composer Jorge Pardo.  Julia had the chance to meet him while on tour with Paco de Lucia and they quickly became friends.  His amazing blend of Jazz and Flamenco tests the boundaries of both forms yet retains the true essence of each genre.  The passionate blend is engaging and intense, utilizing all the breaks and calls necessary for authentic flamenco. Yet, no one has ever done an entire dance concert to his music.  Julia Alcantara wanted to make this a reality, as an homage to the genius whose compositions, no matter how innovative, never lost respect for the dance. Now, in Dallas, TX this will happen for the first time, with an all-star cast of dancers from around the country teaming up to create distinctive choreography to match the uniqueness of his music.

Performance Schedule:

Thursday, April 23, 2020; 8 p.m.

Friday, April 24; 8 p.m.

Saturday, April 25; 8 p.m.

 

Photo: Das Blumelein Project
Das Blumelein Project

Das Blumelein Project

Try Me (three performances)

Hamon Hall – Winspear Opera House

Synopsis:

Try Me is a musical production that focuses on the empowerment and solidity of women. Each musical cycle portrays how females throughout history have and are currently being marginalized. In these performances, DB Project will collaborate with a variety of local artists to combine music, poetry, dance, and spoken monologue. By weaving together different artistic mediums, we hope to create an accessible platform for our audiences to absorb these stories. 

Performance Schedule:

Thursday, May 18, 2020; 7:30 p.m.

Friday, May 19; 8 p.m.

Saturday, May 20; 8 p.m.

 

Indique Dance Company

Satyam-The Truth | Bias (three performances) 

Hamon Hall – Winspear Opera House

Synopsis:

Our production ‘Satyam-The Truth | Bias’ will be an exploration of the progression of biases in each of us, in our relationships, and in society as a whole. The current picture of bias reflects blatant discrimination. But haven't we all relied on stereotypes or approached someone with assumptions at some point? What are the long-term effects of this? What are the motivations to do this?

Performance Schedule:

Thursday, June 25, 2020; 7:30 p.m.

Friday, June 26; 8 p.m.

Saturday, June 27; 8 p.m.

 

B. Moore Dance

The Neglected Heart of Soul: An Ode for Donny Hathaway

(three performances) 

Hamon Hall – Winspear Opera House

Synopsis:

B. MOORE DANCE in collaboration with SW Soul Circuit and Behavioral Health Practitioner/Ret, Rod Ambrose, presents The Neglected Heart of Soul: An Ode to Donny Hathaway.

This exciting soulquarian dance concert, reviews the music and songs of legendary recording star, Donny Hathaway, (October 01, 1945-January 13, 1979.)

Styled in the format of a symphony with four movements, audiences will be taken on a journey of dance accompanied by live, riveting Gospel sonata of songs, Blues, Jazz and R & B that depict and reflect identity, growing up, evolving and ceremonial practices, rooted in black oral traditions.

Performance Schedule:

Thursday, July 16, 2020; 7:30 p.m.

Friday, July 17; 8 p.m.

Saturday, July 18; 8 p.m.

 

2020 Elevator Project Advisory Review Panel

 

Albert Drake (former Bruce Wood Dance dancer; Professor, artist-in-residence - Southern Methodist University)

Richard McKay, Ph. D. (Artistic Director & Conductor - Dallas Chamber Symphony)

Anyika McMillan-Herod (Actor, Writer, Producer, Director; Co-founder / Managing Director - Soul Rep Theatre Company)

Mara Richards Bim (Actor, Director Founder and Artistic Director of Cry Havoc Theater Co.)

Estela Tejeda, aka Estela Tejeda-Moreno (Dancer, choreographer, teacher – Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts)

The recommendations of the Advisory Review Panel were reviewed and approved by:     

  • John Paul Batiste – Chair, Cultural Affairs Commission
  • Jennifer Scripps – Director, Office of Cultural Affairs
  • Debbie Storey – President and CEO, AT&T Performing Arts Center
 Thanks For Reading




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2020 for the Elevator Project
AT&T Performing Arts Center's fifth season has eight works of theater, dance, and music.
by Mark Lowry

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