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In association with Clark Center NYC
3 Lafayette Ave, Brooklyn
Due to inclement weather, we have rescheduled Live & Outspoken. It will now take place on February 28, 2014. If you purchased tickets to the February 13 performance you will need to purchase tickets again. Your previous purchase will be automatically refunded. We look forward to seeing you at Live & Outspoken with Dianne McIntyre and Sarita Allen!
International dancer/choreographer, Sarita Allen, sits down with legendary choreographer/dancer, Dianne McIntyre, in a candid conversation about their experiences throughout their careers. This program will also feature excerpts from Dianne McIntyre’s repertoire.
Presented in association with Clark Center NYC.
Dianne McIntyre founded her groundbreaking New York-based modern dance company Sounds in Motion in the 1970s honing her communicative teaching style, her improvisational explorations and her crafting of dance works that feature idiosyncratic use of live music, a dynamic movement style and a blending of narrative, history and theatrical nuance—all qualities of McIntyre’s distinctive choreographic voice.
A native of Cleveland, Ohio, much of her work is inspired by African American culture, history and literature, documenting/expressing through dance both the personal and historic moments of Black culture and universal themes. Her signature choreography encompassing contemporary dance, theatre, film and television, includes collaborations with some of America’s premiere artists, among them, iconic jazz musicians, Max Roach, Cecil Taylor, Lester Bowie, Olu Dara, and others; literary giants, such as, August Wilson, Zora Neale Hurston, Rita Dove, and Ntozake Shange; and, renown theatre and film directors. Her choreography is featured in the film Beloved, directed by Jonathan Demme, and in HBO’s Miss Evers’ Boys for which she received an Emmy nomination for choreography. In 2009 President and Mrs. Obama saw her work on Broadway in August Wilson’s Joe Turner’s Come and Gone.
McIntyre has received many awards, including, a John S. Guggenheim Fellowship, three Bessies, Master of African American Choreography Medal from the Kennedy Center, Helen Hayes Award for theatre direction and choreography in DC, two AUDELCOs (NY Black Theatre), Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degrees from SUNY Purchase and Cleveland State University, American Dance Festival 2008 Balasaraswati/Joy Ann Dewey Beinecke Endowed Chair for Distinguished Teaching, tributes from the American Dance Guild, Ohio Dance and Cleveland Arts Prize as a modern dance pioneer, Distinguished Alumni Award from Ohio State University College or Arts and Sciences, plus numerous grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts and other foundation and corporate funders including Cuyahoga Arts and Culture. (National Dance Residency Award through Pew Charitable Trust and National Dance Project through New England Foundation for the Arts, National Endowment for the Arts Three-year Choreography Fellowship - one of three nationally).
In 2012, Time Out New York referred to McIntyre as “one of modern dance’s reigning divas.” Her own dancing has been described by critics as “electrifying” and “a mastery of rhythm and dynamics.” Her choreography for Sounds in Motion and other commissions for such companies as the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, Dancing Wheels, GroundWorks Dance Theater, Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble, Dallas Black Dance Theatre and numerous colleges and universities, has been seen on and off Broadway, in European festivals and performance venues, and in more than 30 plays in regional theatres across the country.
In 1991 McIntyre researched and recreated dance pioneer Helen Tamiris’ 1937 masterpiece, How Long, Brethren? based on Negro Songs of Protest. Professional and student dance ensembles learn this work while studying the American social climate of the early 20th century. Other research and interviews inspire her dance-driven dramas including “I Could Stop on a Dime and Get Ten Cents Change”, from her father’s stories and “Open the Door, Virginia!” on civil rights confrontations of the 50s and 60s. In 2009 and 2010 she performed in a solo in FLY: Five First Ladies of Dance presented by 651 ARTS in Brooklyn and on tour with Germaine Acogny, Carmen de Lavallade, Bebe Miller, and Jawole Willa Jo Zollar.
Her mentors include the dance faculty of The Ohio State University, Gus Solomons Jr, dance presenter Louise Roberts and theatre producer Rick Davis.
Dianne McIntyre’s 2006 Bessie Award included this special citation, “for daring to explore new areas of expression by fusing dance, live music and words; and then to inspire the creative voices of generations of choreographers and dancers.”
Upon joining the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Sarita Allen immediately began her meteoric rise within the company. She distinguished herself in her first season with a leading role in The Mooche, dancing opposite company principal dancers Judith Jamison, Estelle Spurlock and Sara Yarborough. That season Allen was also prominently featured in Ailey’s Night Creature, both works were part of the highly anticipated Duke Ellington Festival at Lincoln Center.
Her strong stage presence and attention to artistic detail allowed her to excel in Ailey masterworks such as Blues Suite and Revelations. These qualities coupled with a crystalline technique and a physique designed for movement garnered her roles in such notable Ailey ballets as Masekela Language; Streams; The Lark Ascending; The River; Memoria; Landscapes; and, Black, Brown and Beige. Over the course of her twenty-year association with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Mr. Ailey choreographed eight original works featuring Allen; and she was a favorite of world-renowned guest choreographers including: John Butler, Ulysses Dove, George Faison, Louis Johnson, Lar Lubovitch, Donald McKayle, Elisa Monte, Eleo Pomare, and Jerome Robbins. She had the privilege of performing Revelations at the White House for two United States Presidents including President William Jefferson Clinton.
Not limited to the concert stage Allen has performed on television, in motion pictures and video. She has appeared in Ailey Celebrates Ellington (CBS), Bill Cosby Salutes Alvin Ailey (NBC), Torture (The Jackson’s Victory album video), Frances Ford Coppola’s The Cotton Club, Beat Street, The Last Dragon, and Angel Heart. Allen extended her artistry as a dancer/actress in the PBS Great Performances production of For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf.
Allen’s first love remains the stage. Her ability to transcend a role has made her a favorite with directors of other artistic disciplines including opera. She starred as Bess in the first all dance production of Porgy and Bess choreographed by Tony Award nominee Hope Clark at the Gershwin Centennial (Kennedy Center, Washington DC) followed by a European Tour. Allen has also performed the role of Venus in Venus and Adonis at the Sante Fe Opera summer festival and Eve in Mephistopheles with the Philadelphia Opera Company. It was only a matter of time that these theatrical experiences would lead Allen to create dance for theatre; she choreographed the national tour of Elton John’s epic Aida, which later toured China.
Having a career most artists only dream about, Allen has performed in countless countries on six continents. Most memorable have been performances at the Acropolis in Athens, Milan’s La Scala, the Paris Opera House, and at the Great Pyramids in Giza. Her artistry has kept her in demand; she has worked with The Jamison Project, Elisa Monte, and PARADIGM. She is presently artist-in-residence with Complexions Contemporary Ballet and has been the partner of company co-director Desmond Richardson (2011 Capezio Award Winner) for over fifteen years. While in Russia with Complexions Contemporary Ballet Ms. Allen accepted an award for the company honoring their contributions to the “international dance scene.” The ceremony took place on stage at the legendary Marinsky Theater, home of the Bolshoi Ballet.
Jessica Lynne and DéLana R.A. Dameron reflect on ways they make a home, creatively, wherever they are.