Spring Arts: Dancers of all styles step across stages this spring

click to enlarge PHOTO COURTESY BALLET TUCSON
Photo Courtesy Ballet Tucson

No dance is like a dance performed in person! Fingers crossed that the pandemic keeps receding and dance lovers can find high quality work this spring Here are the options.

UA School of Dance
1713 E. University Blvd.

No dance is like dance in person! Fingers crossed that the pandemic keeps receding and that dance lovers can see the high quality work this spring promises to bring.
At the UA, the School of Dance has scheduled three dance concerts this spring, all with live young dancers. All shows will be in Stevie Eller Dance Theatre. The first concert, Dance Is In the Air, is coming right up, Feb. 23-27. The lively first piece, Pasadena, is choreographed by prof Tamara Dyke-Compton. A welcome celebration of friendship and togetherness, it features the music of the Beach Boys. Sam Watson, another teacher, brings back his popular Punctuations .!?, a hilarious dance about grammar set to Bach. Also on the boards are The Phoenix, choreographed by Hayley Meier, and works by Christopher Compton and Marquez Johnson, formerly a star dancer with Artifact Dance. The second and third concerts interlap, between a show featuring professors’ choreography (Spring Collection) and a show giving the limelight budding student choreographers (Emerge: Student Spotlight). The pieces for Emerge are not yet confirmed, but the profs’ works are planned out. A highlight of the Spring Collection, Habaneras, the Music of Cuba, is a full company dance created by Frank Chaves, a native of Cuba. Michael Williams’s &theVerdictIZ, is a boisterous but fun ride through 1930s Chicago, a place of mobsters, murder and malice. Other faculty members creating works are Barbea Williams, Elizabeth George-Fesch and more. The April concerts run from April 20 to May 1. Consult the webpage to learn when the two differing groups are performing. dance.arizona.edu

Ballet Tucson
200 S. Tucson Blvd.

Tucson’s only pro ballet company has made a marvelous comeback from the pandemic; the shutdown kept them off the stage for more that a year. But they came back strong in the fall and staged three shows, including a sold-out Nutcracker.
Late in January, the troupe performed a lovey Swan Lake, Part 11; aced a challenging contemporary piece by Amanda Morgan; and sashed to the live love music of Ann Callaway. Now the dancers are looking to another major show, at Leo Rich, April 1-3. The biggest news about the concert, called ReInvigorate Spring Concert, is that the company has added still another Balanchine to its repertoire. “Who Cares,” a jazzy 1970 work, was created for the New York City Ballet. With the permission of the Balanchine Trust—not easy to get—Ballet Tucson will dance it for the first time.
Next up, guest choreographer Kiyon C. Ross will bring out his No Holds Barre’d, an “electrifying” work to be danced by the company for the first time. Daniel Precup, the company ballet master, presents his Divertimento in D, an innovative work “that brings new life to classical period music.” Speaking of music, the Bill Ganz Western Band will once again singing classic cowboy tunes for Saddle Up. Mark Schneider created the fun dance that turns ballerinas and gentleman dancers into rootin’ tootin’ rompers and prancers.
Ballettucson.org

ZUZI! Dance
650 N. 6th Ave.

The long-time ZUZI group has changed over the years, but the popular No Frills Dance Happenin’ is still happenin’. Dancers and choreographers of all levels, from beginners to pros, are welcome to perform. It’s not too late to join in. And everyone else, dancer or not, is invited is to come to the show. The show goes on at 6:45 p.m. on Sunday, April 3, at the Valley of the Moon, 2544 E. Allen Road. ZUZI also is inviting those who missed the Winter Solstice Celebration 2021 to watch it virtually. For more information on both events, call 520-629-0237, send an email to zuzisphere@gmail.com, or consult zuzimoveit.org.
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