What: “Compass: The Past Forges the Future” Dance Concert at the CSUDH University Theatre
When: Wednesday through Saturday, November 8, 9, 10, and 11 at 7:00 p.m.
Tickets: Tickets are $15 per night. To reserve a ticket, visit www.csudh.edu/theatre-arts/buy-tickets/.
Contact: Call the CSUDH Performing Arts Department at (310) 243-3589, or email PerformingArts@csudh.edu.
California State University, Dominguez Hills (CSUDH) Department of Theatre and Dance will present the live dance concert “Compass: The Past Forges the Future.” Artistic Directors and CSUDH faculty Chelsea Asman and Marco Carreon present this show with fellow faculty and guest choreographers. Faculty choreographers include Amy Allen, Shaunté Caraballo, and Jeff Hendrix. In addition to works by CSUDH dance faculty, there will be guest works by Donald McKayle, Isadora Duncan, Bella Lewitzky, and Shirley Mordine. “Compass: The Past Forges the Future” will perform live on the University Theatre stage November 8, 9, 10, 11 at 7:00 p.m.
“Compass: The Past Forges the Future” explores the ways in which our predecessors have helped to construct new paths that point us forward, as we too open doorways for future generations. This year’s Fall dance concert at CSUDH will honor some of our dance ancestors with reproductions of historical works, while also celebrating the forward momentum of new dance innovations by our dance faculty. Whether it be in the arts, politics, or sciences, understanding our history can better inform our future choices.
The history of modern dance is shared through the works of Isadora Duncan, Donald McKayle, Bella Lewitzky, and Shirley Mordine. Guest artist Dawn Karlovsky restages a Duncan piece introducing us to one of the pioneers of modern dance from the 1920s. Isadora Duncan paved the way for modern dance greats like Martha Graham, who later defined modern dance with her codified technique. Donald McKayle’s work “Angelitos Negros,” a solo from the dance suite “Songs of the Disinherited,” is restaged by Artistic Director Chelsea Asman. Donald McKayle described the themes of this piece from 1972 as grief, female strength, and black majesty. Donald McKayle created this work in Los Angeles, where Bella Lewitzky also made a great impact.
Guest artist Walter Kennedy of University of Oregon, a former Lewitzky dancer, restages Lewitzky’s “Game Plan,” a dance from 1973 that is more than a dance, but also a game. Dancers follow rules that may change the dance from performance to performance. Finally, Professor and Chair of the Department of Theatre and Dance, Doris Ressl, performs the solo “Silver Linings,” restaged by Danielle Gilmore from the longer work “Cartoons” by Shirley Mordine. Mordine, founder of the Columbia College Dance Program in Chicago, was a mentor to Ressl and was essential in the development of modern dance in Chicago. This piece from 1981 is both humorous and wistful, telling the story of an old showgirl and her friends.
Our dance faculty represents the future of dance, building on the foundations set before them. Themes of survival, loss, and friendship are explored. Jeff Hendrix’s piece “To the Bone” uses jazz dance technique to explore the idea of dystopia. The hard-hitting soundtrack and sharp movements of the dancers depict survival in a distressed society. Shaunté Caraballo’s piece “Lahaina Luna” uses hula dance movement to portray the devastation of the recent wildfires in Lahaina, Maui. Amy Allen’s piece “A Match Made” depicts the excitement and nervousness of the first day of school. It demonstrates how finding some small commonality can lead to a lifelong friendship. While we look back at the past and ahead to the future, the common thread shared is our humanity, both the sorrowful and the joyful.
Tickets to “Compass: The Past Forges the Future” are $15 and may be purchased at www.csudh.edu/theatre/tickets or by calling (310) 243-3589.
Performances will take place in the University Theatre, located on the CSUDH campus, 1000 E. Victoria St. For driving directions and a map of campus, visit www.csudh.edu/directions. Parking permits are $10 and may be purchased at kiosks near each lot.
For more information, call (310) 243-3589, or email PerformingArts@csudh.edu.