East Bay DANCES 2017
Oakland Ballet Company is excited to present the 3rd annual East Bay DANCES – an afternoon celebrating the very best of dance in the East Bay. Featuring performances by Oakland Ballet, Ah-Lan Dance, AXIS Dance Company, Ballet Folklórico México Danza, Jubilee American Dance Theatre, The Milissa Payne Project, Savage Jazz Dance Company, Shabnam Dance Theatre, Van der Zwaan Dance Studio, and YuRue Ma!
Sunday, June 4
Odell Johnson Performing Arts Center Theater
900 Fallon Street, Oakland
Adult General Admission: $25
Senior General Admission: $20
Child and Student General Admission: $15
Ah-Lan Dance is based in El Cerrito and was founded in 2006 by Ah-Lan, a native of Hangzhou, China and a classically trained Chinese dancer. Ah-Lan Dance offers classes for students of all ages in traditional Chinese dance, ballet, modern dance and Chinese acrobatics in a program emphasizing mutually reinforcing skills development and the cultivation of individual artistic expression in traditional and contemporary modes. Ah-Lan Dance also offers dance-based fitness activities including Zumba and Chinese dance for exercise. A goal of the group is to engage with the local community through performance to share the beauty, artistry, and diverse traditions of Chinese dance. Ah-Lan Dance performs frequently around the Bay Area for community events such as Chinese New Year, the Albany Arts and Green Festivals, the Solano Stroll and more.
AXIS Dance Company exists to change the face of dance and disability through Artistry, Engagement and Advocacy. Based in Oakland since 1987, AXIS is the nation’s most acclaimed ensembles of performers with and without disabilities. Nearing its 30th year, AXIS is thrilled to announce the appointment of internally renowned choreographer Marc Brew as its new Artistic Director. Under the Artistic Direction of Judith Smith from 1997-2016, AXIS’ list of collaborators included Bill T. Jones, Stephen Petronio, Yvonne Rainer, Ann Carlson, David Dorfman, Marc Brew, Meredith Monk, Joan Jeanrenaud and Fred Frith. AXIS has toured to over 100 cities in US, Europe and Russia. The Company has received seven Isadora Duncan Dance Awards and has appeared twice on FOX TV’s So You Think You Can Dance, exposing their important and relevant work of physically integrated dance to millions. Through education and outreach programs thousands of children and adults of all ages and abilities are inspired to dance each year.
Ballet Folklórico México Danza has been a proud member of the Bay Area community since 1991. Our non-profit dance company is dedicated to presenting the beautiful, cultural heritage of Mexico through folkloric dance. The group’s original purpose was to serve as an after-school program to keep children from drug use and gang activities. Today, our program continues to be a safe space for children to develop a love of dance and learn about their heritage – but we have grown to include individuals of all ages and nationalities from diverse Bay Area communities.Influenced by the work of Amalia Hernandez, the “Queen of Mexican Folklore,” México Danza helps students of all ages develop as artists in a unique, disciplined and cultural environment. The passion and energy of our dancers, our colorful costumes and our intricate dance style has moved many audiences and has helped our group gain a loyal following.
for change dance collective (fcdc) grew out of a desire to make dance through a choreographic process that reflects the ideals of socially conscious art. Since 2010, fcdc has been creating highly experiential dance theater excavated from raw experience, employing a uniquely democratic approach to art-making that embraces collaboration, shared ownership, and intimacy of all kinds. A sense of familial interconnectedness pervades our work, as many individual voices equally contribute to performances that cast light on the aspects of humanity that connect us all. United under the core beliefs that great art is transformational art, and that great art should be accessible to all, we hope to create dance that fosters change in audiences and performers alike.
Jubilee American Dance Theatre is a unique performance ensemble, bringing to life the dances, music, songs, and stories of the folks who made America. From Appalachia to Swing Era dance halls to Cajun Country, the North American Whalers, Baja California, America’s immigrants and more, Jubilee transports you to another time and place, through its rich weaving of stories, songs, dance, and music. Jubilee’s work is all set in context with period costumes and props. The costume staff goes to great lengths to research and reproduce authentic costumes of each era. Likewise, the choral and music directors recreate regional and historical musical styles. The company was formed in 1999 by Hilary Roberts, and has been under the direction of Becky Coulter since 2009.
Nominated as a 2016 “New Names to Watch” by Dance Europe, Milissa Payne Bradley is a San Francisco-based choreographer and dance educator. Branded the “e.e. cummings of ballet” by The Huffington Post, Payne Bradley began choreographing in 2010 and founded the San Francisco-based The Milissa Payne Project the same year. In 2011, Payne Bradley’s The Game is Afoot was chosen as a semi-finalist for the Company C Contemporary Ballet’s New Commission Project. The Milissa Payne Project’s Revolve, was awarded Best Whirling Dervish in the Best of San Francisco 2013 by SF Weekly. Payne Bradley was also awarded by BayAreaDanceWatch & SAFEhouse for the Performing Arts as the Bay Area’s Best Choreographer (Contemporary Ballet) 2012. She has set work on New York Theatre Ballet at New York Live Arts, and in San Francisco for Dance Theatre of San Francisco, Bay Pointe Ballet, ODC Theater’s Music Moves Festival and the West Wave Dance Festival.
Payne Bradley began her professional career in 2005 with The Oakland Ballet under the direction of Ronn Guidi. She is an Artist in Residence at the Ruth Asawa San Francisco School of the Arts, SOTA and part of the teaching staff at the Contra Costa Ballet School. Payne Bradley is a graduate with Honors from Saint Mary’s College of California in the Liberal Education for the Arts (LEAP) program, and is also a recent graduate with Honors from Saint Mary’s College of California with an MFA in Dance: Creative Practice.
Savage Jazz Dance Company (SJDC) was founded in 1992 by Artistic Director Reginald Ray-Savage. SJDC is distinguished by its disciplined dancers and instructors, and its dedication to the exploration of music’s range of expression. SJDC has created a singular technique, quality, and philosophy that define the Company’s movement style. Driven by the vision of Mr. Savage, and realized by the training and physicality of our dancers, SJDC’s movement is defined by three primary beliefs: the importance of disciplined, improvisational, and technical dance training, rooted in an appreciation and acceptance of ballet and modern techniques; the willingness to give into the rich artistic expression of music, in all forms; and ENERGY. Savage Jazz Dance Company has been called “…the most layered, sophisticated concert jazz dance company in these Western climes” by Dance Magazine.
“Once in a great while a rare person comes on the scene – for whatever reason – who seems to reincarnate the lessons from his teachers and forebears. It is this quality in Reginald Ray-Savage that gives the depth of heritage and authenticity to his company” –K.C. Patrick, Dance Magazine
The Van der Zwaan Dance Team is composed of 8 passionate dancers who are always eager to learn, explore, create and perform. The team choreographer is State and International Dance Champion, Santia Andrews. The girls are skilled in Ballet, Contemporary, Hip Hop, Jazz, Lyrical, Modern, Pointe and Tap. Recently they became a competitive team earning them many trophies, medals and a National Dance Title. Today they will be performing one of their favorite dances entitled “Glory”. We hope our dance touches your heart, kindles your soul and encourages you to march on with us as we spread our love to all around else.
YueRu Ma was born in Singapore and most recently a company member of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago 2. She began her formal dance education at School of the Arts Singapore (SOTA), and later graduated summa cum laude from The Boston Conservatory, receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Contemporary Dance Performance on The Boston Conservatory and Anne Cuervo-Philip Pionelli scholarship. She has worked professionally with Post:Ballet, The Move Messenger(s), Amy Seiwert, Zoe Dance, Present-Day Dance Theater and Danza Organica, and furthered her training at Nederlands Dans Theater, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Northwest Dance Project, BODYTRAFFIC, and Springboard Dans Montreal. She has also originated featured roles in works by Peter Chu, Alice Klock, Marco Goecke, Andrea Miller, Adam Hougland, Loni Landon, Dwight Rhoden, Uri Sands and Kuik Swee Boon, and performed repertory pieces by Crystal Pite, Brian Arias, Ohad Naharin, Paul Lightfoot and Sol Leon. She was also a featured dancer various music videos, including Daniel Yoong’s Dreaming, David Arregui’s Dance, and Luis Gamarra’s Yoso Immigrante. A strong advocate of interdisciplinary collaboration, she spearheaded a structured-improvisation project, Essence and Ephemerality, that melds dance, music, technology and text to create an evening-length work. As an artist, she strives to always be honest, curious, and courageous, and impact this world meaningfully through the powerful language of dance.