The Purchase Dance Corps of the Purchase College School of Arts has been invited to represent the Americas at the Hong Kong International Festival of Dance Academies on June 11-18.
Seventeen dancers, accompanied by faculty members and artistic directors, will travel to Hong Kong with Dean Carol Walker of the Conservatory of Dance. They will also transport all their scenery and costumes.
Purchase will be sharing the stage with dancers from the Paris Conservatoire, Tshwane University of Technology, South Africa, Western Australia Academy of the Performing Arts, Taipei University of the Arts, Beijing Dance Academy, Queensland University of Technology, Australia, Laban Center of London, and the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts.
They will perform an excerpt from Gloria by Mark Morris, the men’s quartet from Paul Taylor’s Cloven Kingdom, Gerald Arpino’s Valentine, and an excerpt from the world premiere of The Great Quiet by Lauri Stallings.
Gloria is set to the music of Antonio Vivaldi. The Purchase Dance Corps is the first group outside of the Mark Morris Dance Group to perform his extraordinary work. The Purchase Dance Corps has spent a year working on this piece with Mark Morris Dance Group alumni Joe Bowie, Tina Fehlandt and Megan Williams, a former member of the Mark Morris Dance Group and currently a member of the Conservatory of Dance faculty.
Paul Taylor’s Cloven Kingdom is a classic and witty look at man as a social animal, in which dancers, dressed in white tie and tails, are juxtaposed with often hilariously animalistic behavior. The work is set to a score that alternates between the silvery, civilized intricacies of Corelli and a pulsing drumbeat that underscores an unruly feeling beneath the initial mannered, genteel surface.
Valentine is the humorous and contentious battle of the sexes choreographed by Gerald Arpino of the Joffrey Ballet. Christian Holder, who originally performed the man’s role, assisted in the restaging of this ballet. During his 13 years as a leading dancer with the Joffrey Ballet, he worked with choreographers Jerome Robbins, Agnes de Mille, Alvin Ailey, Kurt Jooss and Leonide Massine. He has choreographed and designed costumes for the Joffrey Ballet, Washington Ballet and American Ballet Theatre, among others. Ted Kivitt, former principal dancer with ABT, was the Conservatory of Dance faculty rehearsal assistant.
Award-winning choreographer Lauri Stallings’ created The Great Quiet for the Purchase Dance Corps. Stallings is a former soloist with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago who began her career with the Cleveland San Jose Ballet and later danced with BalletMet. A choreographer who makes waves wherever her work is seen, she has received recent commissions from the Atlanta Ballet, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and American Repertory Ballet in Princeton. She is the recipient of the Ruth Page award from the Chicago Music and Dance Alliance for her first full-length piece, Moody Hollow, and a Cliff Award for her choreographic work.