Apr 15, 2023
Pilobolus: BIG FIVE-OH!
Sat, Apr 15, 7:30 pm
Carlson Family Stage
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Welcome to a very special Northrop 2022-23 Dance Season event. It is an honor to welcome Pilobolus back to Northrop to celebrate their 50th anniversary with a program that puts the “Oh!” in BIG FIVE-OH! Not only that, we are thrilled to experience the world premiere of a new work by Pilobolus alum Gaspard Louis and to offer our first sensory friendly event—Pilobolus Rules @ Play—a pay-what-you-wish matinee for all ages. Your commitment to the work that we do and the artists we present—including those involved with this performance—make this possible, and we are grateful for your support.
I hope you can join us for upcoming Northrop events that include must-see performances for dance enthusiasts, and arts and entertainment lovers. Our largest fundraising event of the year is coming next month—ENCORE: The State Ballet of Georgia pre-show dinner will be part of a dazzling evening that includes live music, a silent auction, and more. I know you’ll be inspired by these extraordinary opportunities to connect with the art and artists, and I invite you to bring family and friends to share these memorable experiences with you.
As we enjoy this season and look to the future, I invite you to explore the different ways you can support Northrop’s programs, helping to shine bright lights on our stage. We value your involvement in furthering the important work that Northrop is doing now, and in the future, to inspire positive change in our world. The Northrop Advisory Board is growing along with new opportunities to engage. If you are interested in learning more, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. And if you see me in Northrop, please don’t hesitate to introduce yourself! I would love to meet you.
Thank you for viewing this performance and we look forward to your attendance at many more Northrop events!
Jeff Bieganek, Northrop Advisory Board Chair
Pilobolus in, On the Nature of Things. Photo © Robert Whitman.
(Runtime: 14 minutes)
Created by Robby Barnett, Renée Jaworski, Matt Kent, and Itamar Kubovy in collaboration with Shawn Fitzgerald Ahern, Benjamin Coalter, Matt Del Rosario, Eriko Jimbo, Jordan Kriston, Jun Kuribayashi, Derion Loman, Nile Russell, and Mike Tyus
Performed by Nathaniel Buchsbaum, Quincy Ellis, and Marlon Feliz OR Hannah Klinkman, Paul Liu, and Zack Weiss
Music by Vivaldi; Michelle DiBucci and Edward Bilous; Mezzo Soprano, Clare McNamara; Violin Solo, Krystof Witek
Lighting and Set Design by Neil Peter Jampolis
On the Nature of Things was commissioned by The Dau Family Foundation in honor of Elizabeth Hoffman and David Mechlin; Treacy and Darcy Beyer; The American Dance Festival with support from the SHS Foundation and the Charles L. and Stephanie Reinhart Fund; and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Performed by three dancers balanced on a two-foot-wide column rising above the stage, On the Nature of Things explores the power of iconic bodies to tell a story about the birth of desire and its intertwined connection to shame and revenge. Set to vocal music inspired by the classical baroque, On the Nature of Things is both graceful and riveting to watch.
(Runtime: 5 minutes)
Choreographed by Robby Barnett, Lee Harris, Moses Pendleton, and Jonathan Wolken
Performed by Nathaniel Buchsbaum, Quincy Ellis, Marlon Feliz, and Paul Liu
Costumes by Kitty Daly
Lighting by Neil Peter Jampolis
One of Pilobolus’ very first works, Walklyndon is a silent dance owing much of its physical humor to slapstick and vaudeville. Six colorfully dressed jocks romping, bumping, kicking, and galumphing, Walklyndon is a classic.
(Runtime: 10 minutes)
Created by Gaspard Louis, Renée Jaworski, and Matt Kent in collaboration with Nathaniel Buchsbaum, Marlon Feliz, Hannah Klinkman, and Zack Weiss
Performed by Nathaniel Buchsbaum, Marlon Feliz, Hannah Klinkman, and Zack Weiss
Music by Michael Wall
Costumes by Valerie St Pierre Smith
Lighting by Diane Ferry Williams
(Runtime: 18 minutes)
Choreographed by Robby Barnett, Alison Chase, Martha Clarke, Moses Pendleton, Michael Tracy, and Jonathan Wolken
Performed by Nathaniel Buchsbaum, Quincy Ellis, Marlon Feliz, Hannah Klinkman, Paul Liu, and Zack Weiss
Music by Robert Dennis
Costumes by Kitty Daly and Malcolm McCormick
Lighting by Neil Peter Jampolis
Commission from ADF at Connecticut College “Project Music and Dance”
Two lovely women in flowing gowns and large picture hats encounter handsome suitors, discover their Alice-in-Wonderland ability to grow, explore relationships, and give birth to adult men in birthday suits. At once a humorous pantomime, and a profound consideration of the relationship between the sexes, Untitled touches on love, violence, childbirth, and old age.
(Runtime: 12 minutes)
Created by Darlene Kascak, Renée Jaworski, and Matt Kent in collaboration with Eryn Barnes, Nathaniel Buchsbaum, Quincy Ellis, Marlon Feliz, Hannah Klinkman, Paul Liu, and Zack Weiss
Performed by Nathaniel Buchsbaum, Marlon Feliz, Hannah Klinkman, Paul Liu, and Zack Weiss
Storytelling by Darlene Kascak of the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation
Soundscape by Ben Sollee
Costumes by Valerie St Pierre Smith
Lighting by Brian Tovar
Props by Yannick Godts
The Ballad is commissioned by the American Dance Festival with support from the Doris Duke/SHS Foundations Award for New Works. Additional support provided by the Institute of American Indian Studies and The Ballet Foundation.
The Ballad is a new collaboration with Darlene Kascak, Schaghticoke Tribal Nation member, and traditional storyteller and educator. The piece features Kascak’s narration of stories from her own childhood, and a monster, the Wendigo, that has roamed Turtle Island since time immemorial. Kascak’s storytelling and the lessons it offers us leaves the audience with a sense of hope, optimism, and awareness of our behavior towards each other and our planet. Dance critic Kristie Spadie says, “The Ballad shows that co-artistic directors Jaworski and Kent are profoundly committed to making dances that create a conversation about social justice, reckon with our country’s history, and shine a light on the consequences of how we treat Mother Earth.”
(Runtime: 18 minutes)
Created by Renée Jaworski and Matt Kent in collaboration with Itamar Kubovy, Mark Fucik, Antoine Banks-Sullivan, Nathaniel Buchsbaum, Krystal Butler, Isabella Diaz, Heather Jean Favretto, and Jacob Michael Warren
Performed byNathaniel Buchsbaum, Quincy Ellis, Marlon Feliz, Hannah Klinkman, Paul Liu, and Zack Weiss
Music by David Van Tieghem, David Darling, Riley Lee, Olivier Messiaen, Stuart Bogie
Sound Design by David Van Tieghem
Costume Design by Liz Prince
Lighting Design by Thom Weaver
Branches premiered at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival Inside/Out Series, Jun 21, 2017, and was commissioned by Jacobs Pillow Dance Festival and the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes a great nation deserves great art.
Commissioned by the Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival and premiered on the Pillow's iconic Inside/Out stage set against the Berkshire hills, Branches is a work scored using natural sounds and music that ranges from the soundtrack of Ren and Stimpy to the heartbreaking compositions of Messiaen. Branches invites the audience on a journey through nature perceiving the beauty, the aggression, and the absurdity in our natural world in a way that is inherently unique to Pilobolus.
Photo courtesy of Pilobolus.
Danielle De Vito
Major support for Pilobolus Artistic Programming provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art, by The Shubert Foundation, and by CT Humanities.
The Ballad. Photo by Ben McKeown.
Renée Jaworski (Executive Director, Co-Artistic Director) has had an extensive creative career working with Pilobolus since 2000 and in 2011 was honored to have been chosen by the founding Artistic Directors to lead Pilobolus into and beyond its post-succession evolution. She served as choreographer and creator for exciting projects and collaborations for stage, film, and video, such as the 79th Annual Academy Awards, the Grammy® nominated video for OKGo’s All is Not Lost, Radiolab Live: In the Dark, World Science Festival; Time and the Creative Cosmos and works with myriad outside artists through the International Collaborators Project, as well as overseeing the daily functioning and long term planning for the company’s creative endeavors. As a teacher, she facilitates workshops and group projects in diverse communities with dancers and non-dancers alike. In 2010, her alma mater honored her with the University of the Arts Silver Star Alumni Award for her work as an artist in the field of dance. She has performed and toured the world with Momix and Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company. Jaworski lives in Connecticut with her husband and a menagerie of animals.
Matt Kent (Artistic Director) began his career with Pilobolus as a dancer in 1996, helping create many pieces, including classics like Gnomen and Selection, a collaboration with Maurice Sendak. In 2011, Kent was chosen by the founding Artistic Directors to lead Pilobolus in its post-succession evolution. He has directed for the stage and screen choreographing on horses, Chinese acrobats, giant Michael Curry puppets, zombies on The Walking Dead, jugglers, break dancers, actors, LED umbrellas, and dancers. He was nominated for Best Choreography by the L.A. Drama Critics Circle for The Tempest directed by Aaron Posner and Teller. Kent loves exploring and executing the ever-evolving work of Pilobolus as it reaches out to an expanding group of artists, audiences, and populations in ever-unexpected ways.
Nathaniel Buchsbaum (Dance Captain) Manipulator of Light and Shadow, Harnesser of Momentum, Shepherd of Saccharomyces, Student of the Ephemeral, Walker of the Prime Material plane. He is known amongst the Planeswalkers as Tragic the Blathering and is rumored to be known in the Northeast as “He’s Alright.” When he isn't wandering the lands, delighting both young and old with his nimble, scantily-clad acts of physical storytelling, he dwells in Connecticut, brewing beer in his garage under the watchful eyes of his feline familiars. Buchsbaum was absorbed into Pilobolus in 2012.
Quincy Ellis (Dance Captain) began training as a gymnast and figure skater in Maine before earning an acting degree from Emerson College. He has been performing and teaching for the past ten years with companies such as The MoveShop, DeFunes Dance, and Theatre Raleigh. Outside of traditional theatre, Ellis also dances for a variety of NYC Drag Artists, including Juicy Liu and Miz Cracker. Ellis joined Pilobolus in 2017 and does not dye his hair gray … it grows that way.
Marlon Feliz (Dancer) has danced with Pilobolus since 2014, touring Shadowland productions around the world, and now presenting repertory and artistic programming wherever possible. Additional credits include a Broadway debut in the new West Side Story, and other musicals, cruise ships, and NYC-based companies. She received her foundational training in ballet and modern dance at New World School of the Arts and completed her BFA in Dance at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She is originally from Miami, FL.
Hannah Klinkman (Dancer) was born and raised in Dexter, MI where she was classically trained at Ballet Chelsea. She studied at Grand Valley State University and completed her training with BalletMet Columbus in 2016. She has since danced and created with Festival Ballet Providence, Dance The Yard, Rhode Island Women’s Choreography Project, and Momix, collaborating on her own choreographic projects when not traveling. Klinkman is a Mindfulness Meditation teacher, Pilates instructor, dance teacher, and houseplant enthusiast. Klinkman joined Pilobolus in 2021.
Paul Liu (Dancer) Liu grew up in New Jersey training in traditional Chinese dance and acrobatics as well as breaking. He has studied with the Nai-Ni Chen Youth Dance Company, the Academy of Dance Arts New Jersey, the Central Academy of Drama in Beijing, and the Boston Conservatory. He has worked with Avary Gerhardt, Fukudance, Hybridmotion Dance Theatre and is a collaborator with Motlee Party. He is almost always upside down doing floorwork except while eating or getting tattoos. Liu joined Pilobolus in 2019.
Zachary Weiss (Dancer) grew up in Chapel Hill, NC and began his formal dance training at age eight. He has always been a performer whether it be playing the saxophone, singing, acting, or dancing. Weiss studied contemporary dance at UNC School of the Arts for a year before transferring to Swarthmore College. He graduated in 2020 with a major in Engineering and a minor in Dance. After working as a Data Engineer in DC for a year, Weiss joined Pilobolus in 2021. Outside the studio, Weiss can be found riding/fixing bikes, finding high places to climb, and reading science fiction (but not all at the same time).
Robby Barnett (Co-Founder, Choreographer) was born and raised in the Adirondack Mountains and attended Dartmouth College. He joined Pilobolus in 1971.
Alison Chase (Co-Founder, Choreographer) is a choreographer, director, master teacher, and theatrical artist. Her work explores emotional terrain through innovative movement, multidimensional storytelling, fusions of film and dance, and site-specific works. During her three decades with Pilobolus, she built an eclectic repertoire of choreography with unorthodox partnering and aerial techniques. Chase founded Alison Chase/Performance in 2009 to pursue her creative vision in bold collaborations. She has commissions from Wolf Trap, La Scala Opera, the Rockettes, and the Fête de l'Humanité, among others.
Martha Clarke (Co-Founder, Choreographer) is a founding member of Pilobolus and Crowsnest, noted for her multidisciplinary approach to theater, dance, and opera. She has choreographed for Nederlands Dans Theater, La Scala Ballet, the Martha Graham company, and is a resident artist for Signature Theatre, with works including Garden of Earthly Delights, Chéri, and Angel Reapers. Awards include a MacArthur fellowship, Drama Desk Award, two Obies, the Scripps/ADF Award for Lifetime Achievement, and two Lortels.
Moses Pendleton (Co-Founder, Choreographer) has been one of America’s most innovative and widely performed choreographers for almost 50 years. A co-founder of the ground-breaking Pilobolus in 1971, he formed his own company, MOMIX, in 1980, which rapidly established an international reputation for inventive and illusionistic choreography. Pendleton has also worked extensively in film, TV, and opera, and as a choreographer for ballet companies and special events, including two Winter Olympics.
Michael Tracy (Co-Founder, Choreographer) was born in Florence and raised in New England. He met the other Pilobolus founders at Dartmouth in 1969, and became an artistic director after graduating magna cum laude in 1973. Tracy toured with Pilobolus for 14 years and choreographed and directed the company until his retirement. He has set his work on the Joffrey, Ohio, Hartford, Nancy, and Verona Ballets, and with Pilobolus choreographed a production of Mozart’s Magic Flute. Tracy taught at Yale University for two decades and lives in northwestern Connecticut.
Jonathan Wolken (1949-2010) (Co-Founder, Choreographer) co-founded Pilobolus and remained an Artistic Director until his death, creating 46 Pilobolus works in collaboration with co-artistic directors and guest artists, and as sole choreographer. He also choreographed Glyndebourne Festival Opera’s production of Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are, and the Royal Danish Ballet’s Oneiric. Wolken taught many workshops and was dedicated to the furtherance of Pilobolus technique in dance and as a model for creative thinking.
Darlene Kascak (Collaborator) Schaghticoke Tribal Nation, is Education Director & Traditional Native American Storyteller of the Institute of American Indian Studies in Washington, CT. Kascak’s experience as an educator, tour guide, museum assistant, and Traditional Native American Storyteller has taught her the importance of educating both young and old about the many misconceptions and stereotypes about her ancestors. Her style of teaching from a Native American’s point of view allows children and adults the opportunity to have a new understanding of Connecticut’s Indigenous Peoples lives both in the past and in the present.
Gaspard Louis (Collaborator) Founder/Artistic Director of the Durham, NC based company Gaspard&Dancers (G&D). Louis received a BFA in dance from Montclair State University and studied at Gus Giordano's in Chicago and Nikolais/Louis Dance Lab in New York. Following his studies, he joined the New York based AllNations performing traditional dances from many parts of the world. Later, he joined Pilobolus and traveled worldwide with the company. In 2012, Louis received an MFA from the Hollins University/American Dance Festival Program and became the Director of ADF’s year-round creative movement outreach program. Since forming G&D in 2009, he has created over 25 works, presented around the world, and has been a guest teacher and choreographer at University of North Carolina School of the Arts (UNCSA), Duke, Elon, and North Carolina Central Universities.
Michael Wall (Collaborator) has established a reputation as one of the most innovative and impactful voices in the world of music and dance. An in-demand composer, Wall writes approximately 200 new commissions a year for leading international dance organizations, music licensing, and collaborative projects including the Grammy-nominated album Spirit Song by Kenny Barron. Wall also organized, performed, recorded, mixed, and mastered the recording Music for Changing Parts by Phillip Glass with the Salt Lake Electronic Ensemble, which was released on Glass's record label Orange Mountain Music. In dance, Wall has collaborated with Flockworks, Shen Wei, Charles Anderson, The Jose Limon Company, Jesse Zarrit, David Dorfman, Jennifer Nugent, Bebe Miller, and many more. Wall has been distributing music since 1999, and has amassed a library of 53 albums with over 500 tracks of music. He is currently developing online educational resources to teach composing for dance, accompanying dance classes, and teaching music for dance-to-dance educators. This is an industry first and will be available through his website soundformovement.com.
Neil Peter Jampolis (1943-2019) (Lighting Designer) designed for Pilobolus since 1975, spanning 40 years and creating more than 60 new works for the company. He also had a fifty-year active career as a set, lighting, and costume designer for Broadway—where he received four Tony Nominations and a Tony Award—and for Off-Broadway, Dance, Regional Theater, and Opera, which he also directed. His designs appeared on every continent. Jampolis was a Distinguished Professor of Theater at UCLA.
Brian Tovar (Lighting Designer) is an award-winning and Drama Desk nominated lighting designer who has created original work for major Off-Broadway and regional theaters, everywhere. His body of work spans theater, dance, installations, and live events. As a Creative Director and Producer, Tovar has developed and collaborated on multiple groundbreaking and award-winning live experiences, earning multiple Clio Awards. Tovar is a frequent collaborator with the City of New York and has created and designed multiple art installations in New York City. BrianTovarDesign.com
Thom Weaver (Lighting Designer) studied at Carnegie-Mellon and Yale and first worked with Pilobolus on Teller and Aaron Posner’s The Tempest at Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. In NY his work has been seen at NYSF/Public Theatre, Primary Stages, Signature Theatre, Player’s Theatre (Play Dead with Teller), 37ARTS, Cherry Lane, Lincoln Center Festival, Lincoln Center Institute, and SPF. Weaver has worked regionally at CenterStage, Syracuse Stage, Huntington, Milwaukee Rep, Shakespeare Theatre, Asolo, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Williamstown, Folger Theatre, Roundhouse Theatre, Cincinnati Playhouse, Hangar, Spoleto Festival USA, City Theatre, Pittsburgh Public Theatre, and Yale Rep. Weaver has received 3 Barrymore Awards (21 nominations), 4 Helen Hayes nominations, and 2 AUDELCO Awards.
Diane Ferry Williams (Lighting Designer) is a freelance lighting designer who has lit well over 300 productions of theatre, dance, dance festivals, and opera in the US, Canada, Europe, and Asia. Awards include a Jeff Award, an After Dark Award, a Carbonelle Award, six Drammy awards, and six Jeff nominations. Ferry Williams has a BA from Ashland University in Ohio with a theatre major and a Master of Fine Arts in Theatrical Design from Northwestern University.
Kitty Daly (Costume Designer) created costumes for Pilobolus’s Molly's Not Dead, The Detail of Phoebe Strickland, Bonsai, The Empty Suitor, Moonblind, Lost in Fauna, Mirage, What Grows in Huygen's Window, Stabat Mater, Elegy for the Moment. She has designed for the Ohio Ballet, the Pennsylvania Ballet, the Milwaukee Ballet, Merce Cunningham, Crowsnest, and Parker/Pucci. Daly lives in northern Vermont, creating custom evening gowns and beautiful tracks in the snow.
Valerie St. Pierre Smith (Costume Designer) White Earth Ojibwe-kwe, mischief maker, scholar, and author has an eclectic design background including stage, fashion, dance, film, opera, and themed entertainment. Her designs have been seen at The Kennedy Center, Woolly Mammoth Theatre, Mixed Blood Theatre, Sea World: San Diego, the National Museum of the American Indian, and more. St. Pierre Smith’’s scholarly work on cultural appropriation, inspiration, and representation in design has her presenting for a variety of institutions and conferences, including Central Saint-Martins Fashion Programme in London, England, and writing for a variety of publications.
Danielle De Vito (Stage Manager) grew up just outside of NYC and was introduced to the production side of the performing arts at her high school’s performing arts curriculum program, PACE. She continued her studies at The American University in Washington DC, majoring in both Film and Dance Production. De Vito has worked summers at the American Dance Festival, and has worked with dance companies such as Parsons Dance, Dorrance Dance, and Passion Fruit Dance Company. De Vito has also worked for The Broadway Education Alliance, putting together kids' ensemble programs at locations such as Carnegie Hall and The Macy’s Day Parade.
Yannick Godts (Lighting Supervisor)joined Pilobolus as a Production Intern in 2013 and has since toured with the company to eighteen countries across four continents, in addition to designing multiple works for the company. He received his BA from Vassar College in 2013 and now resides in Washington, DC, where he designs lighting for several theater and dance companies. When not on the road, he draws, hikes, bakes, and enjoys the company of his thirty or forty houseplants.
Maxwell Jabara (Deck Manager) hails from southeastern Michigan and went on to study Technical Theatre at Kent State University in Ohio. Just out of college, Jabara worked with Pilobolus as a production intern and recently, he worked as a prop hand for the Blue Man Group. He’s very excited to be back on tour with Pilobolus!
The Northrop Advisory Board is committed to the growth and awareness of Northrop’s mission, vision, and the continued future of presenting world-class dance and music in our community. If you would like more information about the Advisory Board and its work, please contact Cynthia Betz, Director of Development, at 612-626-7554 or email@example.com.
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