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“Carousel,” which contains some of the most gorgeous and memorable songs ever written for a musical, may be a musical you’ve never seen, though it has been around since 1945. The follow-up to “Oklahoma!,” Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II’s hugely successful debut as a composer-lyricist team, “Carousel” requires a huge cast by today’s standards, an orchestra that can do that gl..

Before women like movie star Melissa McCarthy, Chrissy Metz of NBC’s “This Is Us” and Whitney Thore of TLC’s “My Big Fat Fabulous Life” became widely embraced personalities, Josefina Lopez wrote a play titled “Real Women Have Curves.” Lopez’s 1994 comedy, made into a 2002 movie that marked America Ferrera’s film debut, is about many things. Its subjects include the fears of undocument..

Stephen Adly Guirgis won the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for drama for his darkly comic “Between Riverside and Crazy.” Two years later, as GableStage’s sizzling new production so abundantly demonstrates, the play feels completely of the moment – in part because its characters traffic in “alternative facts.” Retired New York cop Walter “Pops” Washington (Leo Finnie) refuses to settle an eight-..

Neo-Impressionist Georges Seurat was an influential visionary whose pointillist work launched a movement before his untimely death in Paris in 1891 at the age of 31. He spent two years painting his masterpiece, “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte,” in which tiny dots of juxtaposed color viewed at the right distance transform into a host of Parisians relaxing on an island ..

Thirty-two playwrights, a half dozen directors, and around ninety plays in less than two hours. This is the South Florida One-Minute Play Festival, now in its fifth year, which runs this weekend. The festival, performed at the Deering Estate in Palmetto Bay and curated by Caitlin Wees and Dominic D’Andrea, has become a phenomenon in its own right. South Florida’s version of the festival i..

Mention the Harlem Renaissance, and those who know their history would be able to tell you a little or a lot about that vibrant period in New York’s black social and cultural life. But bring up the New York Renaissance – also known as the Renaissance Big Five or the Rens – and you’d be likely to stump anyone who isn’t steeped in basketball lore. Playwright and director Layon Gray ..

Listen up, humanity. God has a bone (or 10) to pick with us, and we’d best pay attention. I mean, if he can zap the wing off an argumentative archangel – and he can – just imagine what’s in store for us. Or simply consider the news, post-election. David Javerbaum, the Emmy Award-winning executive producer and head writer of Comedy Central’s much-missed “The Daily Show with Jon Ste..

I saw Lorca en un vestido verde, the Spanish-language version of Nilo Cruz’s play Lorca in a Green Dress eight years ago on a cramped stage in Little Havana’s Teatro Ocho, where Rolando Moreno took on the task of directing four actors who play eight roles. Even with the limitations of the production, Cruz’s inventive and lyrical script made Lorca one of my favorites from the Pulitzer Priz..

Kleber Mendonça Filho’s Aquarius (2016) is a masterful and engaging film exploring the dilemma of a singularly strong-willed, exceedingly attractive older woman who refuses to budge when power comes knocking at her door and tries to blow it off its hinges. A relative newbie to the director’s chair, Mendonça is a former film critic who layers a rich texture of skillfully developed metaphor..

The words that South Florida playwright Michael McKeever has chosen for his intense new play ‘After’ are powerful indeed. They would have to be, since his Zoetic Stage world premiere at Miami’s Arsht Center is a devastating piece about bullying, school violence and the moment when one horrific act destroys two families. But just as powerful as the words in “After” are the silences, as..

Dance Now!’s Deep Rhythm


Photo: Photo Larry Chidsey
Written by: Diana Dunbar
Article Rating

What happens to old dances? Do they slowly disappear as choreographers and dancers move on to other projects? This may well be the case unless an effort is made to revive the piece-- reconstruct it and present it back to an audience. The question then arises as to which pieces are worthy of an encore; enter Ritmo Jondo(Deep Rhythm), a seminal work by Doris Humphrey, one of the foremost choreographers and dancers of modern dance.

Choreographed in 1953, and set in Spain, it examines the relationship between men and women during a time, and within a culture, with established mores for the sexes. Using the passion of flamenco, it’s an intriguing piece filled with shifting rhythms. Humphrey chose Carlos Suriñach evocative piece, Ritmo Jondo: Flamenco for Orchestra, for her piece. Scores of Suriñach, a Catalan composer, were also used by Martha Graham in Acrobats of God and for Embattled Gardens.

“The hardest part of reconstruction was the first movement for the men,” says Hannah Baumgarten, co-artistic director of Dance Now! Miami. “It was done without counts, and was very challenging.” Daniel Lewis, founding Dean of the Dance Department at Miami’s New World School of the Arts and a former dancer and artistic director of the Jose Limon Dance Company, workedwith the Dance Now! dancers to reconstruct the piece, which will be performed on Friday.

Lewis conducted a two week seminar, teaching the style of the Limon technique. Dance Now! is a company which performs works from a variety of choreographers. “Other voices serve as a counterpoint to our work,” explains Baumgarten.

Humphrey was one of the second generation of modern dancers, was a mentor to Limon and artistic director of his company. She choreographed Ritmo Jondo for the company towards the end of her career. Her pieces often examine relationships and social order -- Ritmo Jondo gives philosophical depth to the study of these relationships. Humphrey’s technique includes her concept of fall and recovery, which she called the “arc between two deaths.” Her book, The Art of Making Dances, is still used in many universities today. Ritmo Jondo was on the programin 1954 when the Limon Dance Companybecame one of the first companies chosen to tour South America with the sponsorship of the International Exchange Program under the tutelage of the United States Department of State.

House on Fire is Hannah Baumgarten’s contemporary jazz piece. It has the sense of a New Orleans club scene. With music by Tom Waits, Jimi Hendrix and Medeski, Martin and Wood, it’s a playful look at “club rats” in their search forcompanionship. Baumgarten describes it a sort of game – likened to musical chairs, as “each person seekstheir partner…depicting different relationships of friendship, passion and love.”

Dance Now! Miami co- artistic director Diego Salterini looks at dreams in Sogni. It’s an exploration of dreams -- a series of visions in a non-narrative manner. Salterini explains Sogni sometimes has the feel of being in a dark vacuum with sparks of “floating poetry.”

Dance Now! Miami recreates a masterpiece worthy of its rebirth, and presents and two contemporary pieces from choreographers who are part of the legacy of artists whose works should not be forgotten, but celebrated.

Dance Now! Miami performs Ritmo Jondo at 8:30 p.m., Friday at the Colony Theatre,1040 Lincoln Rd., Miami Beach; tickets $35 general; $15 student/seniors; www.dancenowmiami.org.

 


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