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  • Dressing Room: Dance
    After spending four years investigating violence against women through the lens of mud, gold, oil, and water, choreographer Ananya Chatterjea of Ananya Dance Theatre now points her focus...
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    Ethnic Dance Theatre features dances from the people, by the people, and for the people. This 40th anniversary concert reprises works from each decade of the company's repertory of...
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    Zenon's spring fling features a new work by Daniel Stark, assistant professor of dance at Mankato State University, that re-imagines an Icelandic folktale, and one by Netta Yerushalmy, who...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    Zenon Dance Company opens its spring concert at the Cowles Center for Dance and Performing Arts this weekend with an evening of work that artistic director Linda Andrews says is extremely...
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    A timeless tale gets a high-tech makeover when the James Sewell Ballet unveils Dante's Inferno. Sewell's rendering of that iconic work takes on the mythology of morality and issues of crime...
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    Shapiro & Smith's spring concert plays just about every note on the emotional scale. Artistic director Joanie Smith unveils "Narcissus," in which our current infatuation with social media...
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    Minnesota Dance Theatre's intriguing spring concert features new pas de deux by Martine Van Hamel, formerly an American Ballet Theatre principal dancer, and Adam Hendrickson, formerly with...
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    The gritty and passionate dance form flamenco meets messages of peace and tolerance in this multicultural performance. Inspired by a golden age of forbearance in Spain when Jews, Muslims,...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    In their latest work, premiering at the Cowles Center this weekend, Zorongo Flamenco Dance Theatre takes on the interplay between the three largest monotheistic religions. Titled ConVivir,...
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    Black Label Movement is a two-headed beast. On the one hand, director and choreographer Carl Flink explores highly emotional subjects, like the fate of people trapped in a sinking ship or...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    Black Label Movement returns to the Cowles Center this weekend with the world premiere of artistic director Carl Flink's new piece, "Hive," inspired by a swarm of bees. BLM will also be...
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    A few years ago, Karen L. Charles's beloved father bequeathed to her the resources to realize her dream of starting a dance company. With her Threads Dance Project, Charles quickly gained a...
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    A good hip-hop dancer can morph into a thousand shapes. In a witty play of body parts against one another, the human form becomes a sly mechanism of infinite variety. This weekend, veteran...
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    For this 35th anniversary season, Stuart Pimsler is hauling out some oldies-but-goodies. Pimsler, who often wears his heart on his sleeve even as his tongue lodges in his cheek, creates...
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    Choreographer Maricano Silva dos Santos employs the explosive dance of his native land to tell the harrowing story of African slaves in Brazil. "SenZalma" combines the words "senzala" (slave...
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    Each winter, James Sewell Ballet teams up with a variety of dancers and choreographers to stretch the meaning of ballet and modern dance in a variety of new pieces that range from just...
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    Who knew that the waltz, that most genteel of art forms, was once considered risqué? A lady could lose her inhibitions being whirled around at a dizzying pace by a gentleman whose...
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    In 2007, Off-Leash Area premiered an achingly beautiful dance-theater piece about mental illness and its effects — not only on the person who suffers from it, but also on that person's...
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    A lot of holiday entertainment is geared toward those with a high tolerance for treacly sentimentality. Enter The Santaland Diaries, an excellent palate-cleanser for those of us with more...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    Last weekend, Zenon Dance Company opened its 31st Fall Dance Season with three works. Although each piece is very different stylistically, all have a political bent. There's the dystopian...
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    While Zenon Dance Company is currently mostly known for edgy post-modern works, its deepest roots are in jazz dance. So one big reason to go see this performance is "Ezekiel's Wheel," Danny...
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    The TU Dance repertory specializes in works that demand electrifying articulation and a triathlon-level physicality. Ballet moves punctuate undulating torsos and African dance-inspired...
  • Dressing Room: Theater
    Turning Stanley Kubrick's tour de force exploration of humanity's origins and possible evolution into a stage show is a tall order. It's one that Kathy Welch and Green T Productions believe...
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    This work-in-progress showing gives a glimpse into ARENA DANCES' newest piece exploring how technology is changing our world and our selves. For the project, ARENA founder Mathew Janczewski...
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    James Sewell's choreography is difficult to pigeonhole. Neo-classical pointe work co-exists with dramatic ballets in bare feet to contemporary music and works inspired by Argentine tango,...
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    Aparna Ramaswamy, co-director of Ragamala Dance Theater, infuses the 2,000-year-old classical Indian dance form of Bharatanatyam with contemporary vigor and rock-star allure. "The ravishing...
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    Minnesota Dance Theatre's fall season features a premiere by former American Ballet Theatre principal Charles Askegard, a native son who has returned to become MDT's associate artistic...
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    While Myron Johnson's dance/theater works skew everything from gender roles to family dynamics to famous classical ballets, they also demonstrate over and over the transformative power of...
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    If you wanna have fun, fun, fun, the Flying Foot Forum is for you. Founded by Joe Chvala, this company embraces percussive dance in all its manifestations — from hoofing to clogging...
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    Jump-started by the indefatigable Lisa First of Link Vostok, the Mississippi/Volga V performances feature new and repertory works created by an international roster of guest artists. Company...
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    This Saturday, the Groundbreaker Battle Festival returns with free activities and performances celebrating hip-hop culture. The annual dance-off will feature 28 crews from around the nation,...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    Black Label Movement returns to the Cowles Center this weekend for the premiere of "Whack-A-Mole," Carl Flink's new investigation of the military industrial complex, as well as a reprise of...
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    Carl Flink's dances often take on big, unruly social issues. His company of fearless movers explodes with the combination of unfettered physicality and meticulous control that distinguishes...
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    A cult figure in the world of graphic novels, the Norwegian cartoonist known by his pen name Jason has crafted a career out of deceptively minimalist drawings of animal characters whose...
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    MDT 's "Fierce/Feminine" offers new works— and one classic piece — by women. Choreographer Emery LeCrone has been making waves in New York, where the New York Times lauded her...
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    Nic Lincoln makes a splendid ensemble dancer in any group, including the James Sewell Ballet, where he has performed for eight years, and recent guest appearances with Shapiro & Smith Dance....
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    Zenon's artistic director, Linda Z. Andrews, knows how to pick choreographers. This year she was way ahead of the curve, commissioning new works by recently named Guggenheim Fellowship...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    The spring concert of Zenon Dance Company and School's 30th anniversary season carries a few of endings. The company will be honoring longtime dancer Greg Waletski, who has been dancing with...
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    With her latest work, the indomitable Joanie Smith has created a dance that dares to parse the character of Ophelia in Hamlet. Guest super-divas Judith Howard and Erin Thompson join Shapiro...
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    Ragamala Dance translates the exquisite classical Indian dance form bharatanatyam into a vibrant present tense. "1,001 Buddhas: Journey of the Gods" takes its inspiration from the 28 Hindu...
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    Mathew Janczewski is into mashups. His spring concert scrambles "Ugly" (2007), his fashion-conscious work about breaking through surfaces and getting back to authentic human connections,...
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    The great flamenco artist Susana di Palma has been creating works for decades about women who are vital, uncompromising, and "mad" in every sense of the word. Her new work, "Locas Mujeres y...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    For their show this weekend at the Cowles Center for Performing Arts, Zorongo Flamenco Dance Theatre and School takes on the work of Chilean Nobel Laureate Gabriel Mistral in a piece that...
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    This weekend, Buckets and Tap Shoes returns for a show featuring completely new material. Brothers Rick and Andy Ausland got their start on the streets of Minneapolis, employing tap dance...
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    If you continue to wonder why this performance company, which includes some of the Twin Cities' most dynamic and accomplished dancers, incorporates so much spoken text (wouldn't we rather...
  • Dressing Room: Art
    A year before their 35th anniversary, Stuart Pimsler Dance & Theater has teamed up with the Anita Sue Kolman Gallery to create a retrospective of of the company's work through objects,...
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    Once a year, in the spirit of experimentation, the dancers of James Sewell Ballet lend their bodies and souls to selected dance artists usually working outside (sometimes way outside) the...
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    This weekend, dance arts typically performed on the street will take to the Cowles Center stage for two nights of explosive breakdancing, funkstyles, and more. Leading the way will be B-boy...
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    This weekend, Zenon Dance Company once again brings its yearly holiday offering, "The Nutcracker According to Mother Goose," to the stage. The popular production combines famous figures from...
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    For the next two weekends, Zenon celebrates turning 30 with two separate programs and seven dances by some of the company's most popular choreographers. Weekend one features two world...
  • Dressing Room: Announcements
    This Friday, Zenon Dance Company kicks off two-weeks of performances in celebration of its 30th anniversary. But the premiere show will be even more festive, as Minneapolis Mayor RT Rybak...
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    A man for all occasions, choreographer James Sewell makes dances out of everything from magic tricks to Garrison Keillor's Guy Noir scenarios. So his "Dance Macabre!," a riff on the great...
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    For years, Twin Cities dance enthusiasts and devotees of Ragamala Dance Theater have been gifted with the evolving (and adventurous) sensibilities and exquisite performances of artistic...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    Legendary Bharatanatyam dancer and choreographer Alarmél Valli will be traveling to the Twin Cities this weekend to perform at an event at the Cowles Center for Dance & Performing Arts....
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    New York-based choreographer Larry Keigwin knows how to turn a mishap into an opportunity: He's creating a dance for 12 chairs, which will premiere at the Cowles Center for Dance, while...
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    TU Dance is the brainchild of Uri Sands and Toni Pierce-Sands, former members of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Their first concert at the Cowles Center offers a new work by Uri and...
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    The wildly rambunctious Zenon Dance Company reprises two of its most popular works this spring. Mariusz Olszewski's "Pink Martini," a campy, smoldering tribute to 1950s Latin music stylings...
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    Turning 50 years old can be a sobering milestone, triggering fears that past abilities will inevitably ossify with the march of time. The Minnesota Dance Theatre, however, is observing its...
  • Dressing Room: Free Stuff
    For artistic organizations, turning 50 is no small feat. And with our current struggling economy it's even more miraculous when it does happen. This weekend, the Minnesota Dance Theatre...
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    The many sides of choreographer James Sewell characterize this innovative program. There's his musicality and inventive take on classical ballet, front and center in "Opus 131" set to...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    "Family" is a dance centered on an impossibly large armchair. It gets moved around the stage as Shapiro & Smith dancers pose, flip, and balance around it in a swirl of changing...
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    Lots of dance companies are celebrating anniversaries this year, including the Flying Foot Forum (20 years) and Minnesota Dance Theatre (50 years!). For Shapiro & Smith Dance Company's...
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    What's in a hip-hop move? Since Philadelphia choreographer Rennie Harris began re-staging this urban street dance for the concert stage, rigorously deconstructing hip hop into a primal...
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    Fifty years ago Loyce Houlton, a dancer and choreographer from Duluth, founded the Contemporary Dance Playhouse. She went on to become a leader in American regional dance, and her work,...
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    What a wild ride it's been. For 20 years, Joe Chvala and his percussive dance troupe, the Flying Foot Forum, have been venturing where lesser souls fear to tread. I'm thinking mainly of...
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    Stuart Pimsler wears his heart on his sleeve. His terrific company of actor-dancers speak with their bodies and move with their voices. They can sing, bring Pimsler's smart and witty text to...
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    This weekend, Mathew Janczewski's ARENA Dances will premiere three new works in addition to showing the acclaimed piece "Quartet," which has been expanded. The performance features the...
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    Susana di Palma, artistic director of Zorongo Dance Theatre, delves into her personal story for the upcoming production of "Zorro in the Land of the Golden Breasted Woodpecker...
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    While the Oscars may be the most glamorous night in Hollywood, for us plebs it mostly involves sitting on a couch in front of the television with cocktails and popcorn. Thankfully, Oscar...
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    This year, James Sewell Ballet has moved its immensely popular annual foray into experimental choreography, Ballet Works, to the new TEK BOX Studio in the Cowles Center. TEK BOX, the...
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    Carl Flink is a choreographer with a mission. His Black Label Movement company features dancers who dare to do just about everything. "Visceral" is an apt description of an evening that...
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    For a fun holiday show that the little ones can enjoy—with plenty of entertainment for adults as well—consider checking out Zenon Dance Company's annual production of The...
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    Zenon's debut concert at the new Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts seems designed to show the eclectic-electric vibe this company delivers as a matter of course these days. Wit...
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    North Indian Kathak dance and gospel music might not be the most obvious things to combine, but Katha Dance Theatre and Robert Robinson Music are doing just that for their third...
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    Having illuminated the harrowing realities of eating disorders in last year's "I Hate Myself, Will You Please Love Me," performed to songs by the Carpenters, Mathew Janczewski and his...
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    James Sewell's bright and edgy company looked great on the stage of the Goodale Theater at the opening of the Cowles Center for Dance & the Performing Arts in September. For its inaugural...
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    This weekend, Native Pride Dancers will be taking over the stage at the Cowles Center for Dancing Through Life, an evening of performance and storytelling that celebrates Native American...
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    For the past month, Ragamala Dance has been engaging audiences in a series of events—studio visits, open rehearsals, drumming workshops—leading up to the world premiere of...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    It's big. It's beige. It's here. The Cowles Center for Dance & the Performing Arts finally opened last weekend in a big celebration marking a new era for the Twin Cities dance community....
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    What a long, strange trip it's been: Literally, as the 2,908-ton Shubert Theater, in 1999, was hoisted onto 570 rubber wheels and carted from Block E to Block D in downtown Minneapolis...
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    What a long, strange trip it's been: Literally, as the 2,908-ton Shubert Theater, in 1999, was hoisted onto 570 rubber wheels and carted from Block E to Block D in downtown Minneapolis...
  • Dressing Room: Dance
    The Cowles Center for Dance & Performing Arts hasn't even opened yet, yet the new venue has already hosted an experimental performance of sorts.A group random people recently took to...

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The Cowles Center is a catalyst for the creation, performance, education and celebration of dance and the performing arts.

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