North Carolina Dance Companies (Piedmont Triad)
July 16, 2014 § Leave a comment
The North Carolina Piedmont Triad area consists of the region within and surrounding the three major cities Greensboro, Wintson-Salam, and High Point. It is a metropolitan area that is connected by Interstates 40, 85, 73, & 74. While this area is small there are some fantastic dance companies. Today we are focusing on: Jan Van Dyke Group, Greensboro Ballet, Cyrus Art Production, TERRANOVA Dance Theatre, Helen Simoneau Danse, Sidelong Dance Company, Winston-Salem Festival Ballet, High Point Ballet, and John Gamble Dance Theater.
The Van Dyke Dance Group is a division of Dance Project, Inc., a non-profit organization under the direction of Jan Van Dyke, with three activities: a statewide dance festival, a dance school and a professional dance company.
The company members, selected by invitation, are all local artists with strong performance and educational experience, with the commitment, precision, and energy necessary to perform Van Dyke’s choreography. Several of the company dancers have been with Van Dyke since the earliest performances, investing their careers in the Triad, and giving the Group a maturity and depth not often seen in regional dance performance.
Van Dyke’s choreography, known for dynamic energy and rhythmic precision, seems to live within its musical form, bringing both the movement and the music to a new plane. Her dances are highly structured and meticulously crafted while the movement vocabulary is quick, vigorous and driving. THE WASHINGTON POST has described her use of form as “…immaculate. Thematic variation and recapitulation, counterpoint and consonance occur so naturally that one is hardly aware of the strict structure until the end.”
The Van Dyke Dance Group is preparing for their Fall concert at the UNCG Dance Theater, September 11-12. They (Dance Project) are in the midst of an ambitious fundraiser–to raise $10,000 during the month of July! Click here for more information on the organization and to donate.
Within the Greensboro Ballet is a company and non-profit ballet school (only one in Greensboro area) that offers dance education to children of all ages as well as adults, while the company is professional dancers who share the love of expressing human thought and emotion through the international language of ballet performance.
At the end of every season around end of May, Greensboro Ballet hold an audition for the next season. For the upcoming 2014-2015 season, Greensboro ballet is performing classical ballets and 20th century works by the renowned George Balanchine. To see more information about the performances click here.
According to their website, Cyrus Art Production LLC produces live performance, visual art, guest lecture series, community outreach, classes, and inspiring cultural events. Directed by UNCG Associate Professor Duane Cyrus, a former member of both Alvin Ailey and Martha Graham dance companies, this group brings a diverse and fluid cultural perspective to its audiences, providing an experience that goes beyond the limitations of one specific medium or art form to build a community for creative expression.
Artist development and entrepreneurship in the arts are an important part of the Cyrus Art Production ethos. Duane Cyrus regularly presents development seminars and courses for artists to develop career management and sustainability skills. Coupled with high standards of excellence for dance and theatrical performance, Cyrus Art Production is fostering a more integrated approach to artist development and presentation.
Cyrus Art Production’s next performance is Dance Gala Greensboro 2014 on September 26 at 7pm! This is their fall season concert at Aycock Auditorium located at 408 Tate Street, Greensboro, NC.Check out Cyrus Art Production’s one minute promo video to see some of their work and behind the scenes footage!
TERRANOVA Dance Theatre (TDT)
TERRANOVA Dance Theatre is directed by Jen Guy Metcalf, Assistant Professor at Elon University, where she teaches Ballet, Pointe, Dance for the Camera, and directs the fall dance concert. According to its website, TERRANOVA Dance Theatre is a company that strives to create innovative work for a variety of spaces including the STAGE (concert dance), SITE (site-specific dance) and SCREEN (dance for camera). The company name derived from TERRA: earth, land, territory, ground, place, topography, etc. and IN(NOVA)TION: featuring new method; introducing new ideas; original and creative in thinking.
Check out the Trailer from TDT’s dance films entitled “The Window of the 11th Floor”.
Helen Simoneau Danse
According to Helen Simoneau Danse’s FaceBook page, Simoneau’s work has been described as “unique and striking” (danceviewtimes blog) and “a treat of choreographic craft and imagery” (exploredance online magazine).
Based in both North Carolina and New York City, the company is committed to presenting innovative dances works by Québécois choreographer and founder Helen Simoneau. In addition to an annual company season in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Simoneau’s works has been presented in Austria, Brazil, Canada, France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, and has toured throughout Germany, Asia, and the United States. As a dance maker, she is interested in the intricacies of human relationships and explores the ways we, as individuals, interact and relate to the larger group.
Click here to view some excerpts of some of Helen Simoneau’s work.
Sidelong Dance Company
Sidelong Dance has an active outreach program and brings both live performances and workshops to groups within our community who may not otherwise have the opportunity to experience the joy of dance.
Winston-Salem Festival Ballet
Winston-Salem Festival Ballet (WSFB) has two sectors: the Company and the School. According to their website, WSFB is a professional dance company under the direction of founder and artistic director, Gary Taylor, committed to excellence in the performing arts and providing extraordinary performances that are accessible and enjoyable. Their mission is to create and inspire, engage and excite their audiences, as they experience the art of dance. The School offers an exciting place to learn for dancers ages 3 to adult.
WSFB has a boutique company approach to performance and hires dancers on an as-needed project basis determined by the skill set of the role, and keeps a database of dancer resumes as a resource. They invite interested dancers to send in a resume, full body and head shot, along with a video link. Professional dancers are also invited to inquire about classes with the director.
High Point Ballet
According to the website, High Point Ballet is a non-profit under the direction of a board of directors, representative of the community, and is responsible for developing the season’s activities and performance schedule. The company serves as a valuable resource for artistically focused individuals aspiring to a career in dance and the performing arts.
High Point Ballet provides a vast repertoire of classical and contemporary dance works as well as arts education programs for all. Currently, over 200 members of the company have gone on to such noted schools and companies as University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Kansas City Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, School of American Ballet, Boston Conservatory, Joffrey Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, Nashville Ballet, Richmond Ballet, Alvin Ailey, Ballet Met, and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago.
John Gamble Dance Theater
John Gamble’s artistry is deeply rooted in NC’s past, present, and future dance community. He has been dancing local in NC for 27 years! With his company John Gamble Dance Theater (JGDT), he continues to make and present work at UNCG. He also presents work annually at the Greensboro Fringe Festival and tours with NC Dance Festival about every other year. JGDT produces evening length dances/plays that often address political and social issues.
Along with these dance companies, there are also a number of independent choreographers working in the Triad area who present their work in variety of formal and informal settings including the Greensboro Fringe Festival.