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Dance Place presents Dakshina


April 28th at 8 pm
April 29th at 7 pm
3225 8th Street NE
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Featuring: Lyric Suite, by iconic modern dance choreographer Anna Sokolow

with

Lorry May, Director of the Sokolow Dance Foundation and former soloist with Anna Sokolow–Ms. May will be staging Lyric Suite on the company.

Dakshina is excited to return to Dance Place for the 8th year in a row. Daniel considers Dance Place his home theater, and it is always a pleasure to be at Dance Place–DC’s hub for cutting edge dance. Featuring company premiere of Lyric Suite, Choreography by Anna Sokolow; and Vasanth, latest Indian/modern fusion work by Daniel Phoenix Singh.

Anna Sokolow was a lightening rod and was one of the key figures in establishing modern dance in Israel, Mexico and building her company in the US. There are very few figures contemporaneous to Sokolow who had such a wide reach during their lifetime.

Dakshina presents Anna Sokolow’s arresting Lyric Suite (1954) staged by former principal with the Sokolow company Lorry May. Upon showing this completed work to her music composition teacher Louis Horst, he supposedly remarked to Sokolow: “Anna, Now you are a choreographer!”

Sokolow created works full of dramatic contemporary imagery, revealing the full spectrum of human experience and reflecting the tension and alienation of her time. Rooms (1955), featuring music composed by Kenyon Hopkins for a jazz ensemble, dealt with urban alienation, while Dreams (1961) grew from the horrors of the Holocaust. Other major modern dance works included Lyric Suite (1954), Odes (1965), and Opus 65 (1965). In 1991, Anna Kisselgoff summed up Sokolow’s aesthetic as “American Expressionism,” and commented that “Stillness is a large part of her choreography, and Miss Sokolow can sum up a state of being — an entire society — in an arrested pose.”

Dakshina is one of a handful of companies keeping her legacy alive and we’re proud to be able to partner with Lorry May, former principal with the Sokolow company. Lorry recreates Anna Sokolow’s process of creating dances, and it is liberating to take a leap of faith and have the movement and genius catch you and sustain you so many years after it was conceived and created. Her dances are a testament to the power of movement to survive through generations and across cultures.

The upcoming performance is a result of very old roots I have to Dance Place. Over 14 years ago, I saw Risa Steinberg perform Anna Sokolow’s Kaddish at Dance Place. I was immediately struck by the power of the dance to speak across so many decades. I promised myself that when I had my own company, we would perform the Sokolow masterpieces. It has taken all these years for the dream to come true. Lorry May, a legend in her own right, has been in residence with Dakshina and has painstakingly staged several Sokolow masterpieces on our company.

Lorry has been an amazing gift for our company and has given freely of the deep wisdom, knowledge and love she has for dance–Dakshina dancers and I are truly humbled for the wonderful opportunity Lorry has given us as she staged Lyric Suite on our dancers. Louis Horst wrote in Dance Observer that, “It is one of the finest examples of lyric theater dance seen in many a season…it speaks in abstract and stark simplicity, translating the qualitative moods of the music into penetrating and evocative movement designs. Superbly choreographed and thoroughly integrated, its beauty has a direct appeal to kinesthetic response.”
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Join us for a sneak preview at our Open Rehearsal:

Saturday, April 7th at 2:30 pm
Maryland Youth Ballet
926 Ellsworth Drive
Silver Spring, MD

With generous support from the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, DC Commission on Arts and Humanities, Maryland Youth Ballet, volunteers, sponsors, donors, board and friends of Dakshina.