Led by award-winning founder Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, Urban Bush Women creates theatrical contemporary dance works informed by the traditions of the African Diaspora, performed by dancers who deliver “urgent letters to the world, stories bursting to be told” (Dance Magazine). The program includes a collaboration between Zollar and Senegalese choreographer Germaine Acogny entitled Women’s Resistance, a call to action to amplify women’s voices in 2020. Also planned—and performed to live percussion—is Zollar’s I Don’t Know, but I Been Told, If You Keep on Dancin’ You Never Grow Old, an energetic mashup of dance forms emerging from black communities, from stepping to street dancing.
Dayton Contemporary Dance Company was founded in 1968 to create performance opportunities for dancers of color. Five decades later, it remains rooted in the African American experience, committed to the development of diverse movement artists on the global stage. Known for making choreography “burst into life” (The New York Times), the company performs the New York premiere of rising talent Abby Zbikowski’s driving and highly physical work Indestructible, and Donald Byrd’s epic Geography of the Cotton Field, which explores the history of cotton in all its implications and cultural manifestations.
The American Dance Platform showcases some of the most captivating American companies performing today. Created as a way to celebrate and promote companies from across the United States, each platform is programmed by a different curator appointed by The Joyce. This year’s offerings have been selected by Christy Bolingbroke, founding executive/artistic director at the National Center for Choreography at the University of Akron. The program will include performances by Rennie Harris Puremovement, Urban Bush Women, Limón Dance Company, Bruce Wood Dance, Embodiment Project, Rosie Herrera Dance Theater, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, and ODC/Dance.
Major support for The Joyce’s presentation of the American Dance Platform was provided by The Harkness Foundation for Dance.