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15 Apr 2012

Kimmel Center presents PHILADANCO’s The Philadelphia Connection, April 20-22

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April 15, 2012 Category: Entertainment Posted by:

This exuberant program features Tribute, a full-company piece celebrating the soulful sounds of Philadelphia International Records, and Wake Up, a new dance by Rennie Harris that explores the birth and evolution of Hip Hop. Philadanco celebrates its rich Philadelphia relationships and infuses high-spirited movement with passion, color, and theatrics!


Contemporary dance company PHILADANCO performs The Philadelphia Connection, as part of their spring concert, during the Kimmel Center’s 10th Anniversary season-long celebration, Friday – Sunday, April 20 – 22, at the Perelman Theater.


Known for their high-spirited movement, passionate and graceful onstage presence, Philadanco’s spring program celebrates new and reprised relationships with Philadelphia companies and African American choreographers who have had a long-standing relationship with the dance company.


Program highlights include the world premiere of a newly commissioned ballet, Wake Up, by Philly-native, world renowned hip hop choreographer Rennie Harris; a revival of the 2000 abstract ballet titled Tribute, which salutes the music produced by Philadelphia International Records (Gamble & Huff), choreographer Dwight Rhoden and the late Philadelphia choreographer Gene Hill Sagan’s Suite en Bleu, remounted by Kim Bears- Bailey; and the return of Gatekeepers, an original ballet created by Ronald K. Brown for Philadanco.


The Philadelphia performance follows a tour to the country of Macedonia, where the company was the first American group ever invited to participate in Dance Fest Skopje. Also noteworthy is dance scholar Brenda Dixon Gottschild’s recently published biography of Philadanco founder Joan Myers Brown. Within Joan Myers Brown & the Audacious Hope of the Black Ballerina: A Biohistory of American Performance (December 2011), Gottschild relays Brown’s personal and professional histories, reflecting the hardships-and advances-of African-American dancers in the artistic and social developments of the late 20th and early 21st centuries.


Immediately following the Philadanco performance on April 20, Joan Myers Brown and author Brenda Dixon Gottschild will be available for a book signing in the Commonwealth Plaza.


“The members of…Philadanco can do just about anything: leap like arrows in flight, spin, stretch, kick and melt like hot wax.”

-Washington Post


Tickets for Philadanco are available at $29 to $46, and can be purchased by calling 215-893-1999, online at, or at the Kimmel Center Box Office located on Broad and Spruce streets, Philadelphia, Pa. (open daily from 10 AM to 6 PM, later on performance evenings)

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