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Dancers Kick-off National Dance Week with Performances in Riverside

Dancers Kick-off National Dance Week with Performances in Riverside

(April 4, 2000)

A series of dance events entitled, "4 Choreographers/Southern Exposure" will culminate in the performance of new contemporary dance pieces at 8 p.m. Saturday, April 22 at the University Theatre of the University of California, Riverside. Cost is $10 for students and $15 general.

The event, which coincides with National Dance Week, is the last in a series that combines the talents of nationally-recognized choreographers Jean Isaacs, Victoria Marks, Wendy Rogers and Susan Rose to bring dance to venues in Riverside and Los Angeles.

"What we share is an interest in experimentation and invention," said Rogers, event coordinator and a professor of dance at UCR. "The result is work that is robust, delicate, precise, chaotic, familiar, mysterious, startling and serene."

The project, which includes master classes, video screenings and a series of dance performances, is funded by the University of California Institute for Research in the Arts; the Department of Dance at UCR; the Gluck Fellows Program of the Arts at UCR; the Department of Theater and Dance at UCSD; the Department of World Arts and Cultures at UCLA; and the Riverside Art Museum.

Rogers said the artists have created a program that shows a variety of approaches, from Marks' witty feminist critique on the way movement is interpreted to the full tilt action and improvised choices of Rose's new quintet, "Break Up."

The programming, including Rogers' own new work titled, "Two Trees From Brazil," is designed to welcome both dance aficionados and newcomers to contemporary dance with work that encourages audiences to see dance in a different light.

All four Southern California choreographers draw on a wealth of experience, including the direction of dance companies, national and international touring, interdisciplinary projects and collaborations. For instance, this Spring, Marks will premiere a new work at The Kitchen in New York City; Isaacs' San Diego Dance Theater will tour to Un Desierto Para La Danza in Sonora, Mexico and Cuerpos En Transito in Tijuana with support from Arts International; Rogers will be working on a project funded by an Irvi ne Fellowship in Dance; and Rose will travel to Czechoslovakia to choreograph for a film by Robert Elman.

Other events in the series include "Dancing Across Borders" by The San Diego Dance Theater, directed by Isaacs, 2 p.m. Sunday, April 2 at the Riverside Art Museum, 3425 Mission Inn Ave., Riverside. The presentation is free, part of a First Sunday event that offers arts activities to families on the first Sunday of each month.

A video piece featuring the work of Marks is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. April 10 in Watkins 1000 at UCR.

The same evening concert offered April 22 at UCR will also be performed at UCLA on April 7. Further information related to the project is available at the UCR Department of Dance, (909) 787-5424.

VICTORIA MARKS creates dances for the stage, for film, in community settings, and for professional dancers. Her work magnifies and develops the unique characters of the people she works with and communicates that, through performance, to a wider audience.

Her live work has been performed throughout the United States and Europe. Her films, collaborations with British film director Margaret Williams, have won numerous awards throughout Europe and the U.S., and have been broadcast on television in the U.S., Europe and Australia. Marks was honored with the 1997 Alpert Award for Outstanding Achievement in Choreography, and has been the recipient of grants and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, and the Fulbright Association, among others. Her dance films have received numerous awards in dance film and video festivals, internationally.

Since 1969, JEAN ISAACS has led the way to the formation of a strong modern dance community in San Diego, first as Artistic Director of Three's Company and Dancers, later of Isaac's/McCaleb and Dancers, and since 1997 as Artistic Director of San Diego Dance Theater. Isaacs has choreographed over 60 dances in her lifetime. For the past 10 years Isaacs has been actively involved in projects, which create bi-national opportunities for dancers and choreographers. In 1999 Isaacs received a prestigious grant from Fideicomiso to create Within Limits, combining five dancers from Grupo de Danza de Minerva Tapia with San Diego Dance Theater in a full evening of new work by herself and Adriana Castanos of Sonora, Mexico. This Spring, with support from Arts International, Isaacs' San Diego Dance Theater will tour to Un Desierto Para La Danza in Sonora, Mexico and Cuerpos En Transito in Tijuana.

West coast artist WENDY ROGERS has choreographed and performed dances for over thirty years in New York City, the San Francisco Bay Area and since 1996, in Riverside. Rogers' ten year choreographic project MAKESHIFT dancing (1991-2000) frames performances as editions of an evolving body of material constructed with ongoing artistic partners. She directed the Wendy Rogers Dance Company in the San Francisco Bay Area from 1978 to 1990, touring nationally, to Europe and the Middle East. Honors and grants received include fellowships from the James Irvine Foundation (1999), the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation (1988), and the National Endowment for the Arts (1991-93 and 1995-97). Rogers is a faculty member at UCR.

From 1976 to 1989 SUSAN ROSE was the Artistic Director of Danceworks, a ten-member company in Boston that toured extensively throughout New England and New York. She received choreography fellowships and company grants from the Massachusetts Council on the Arts and Humanities, and the National Endowment for the Arts. In 1989, she returned to Southern California where she was a guest choreographer for the Bella Lewitzky Dance Company. She created Displacements and Tail Tale Signs for the company's national and international tours. In 1996, she formed Susan Rose and Dancers and has since performed at Highways, Dance Kaleidoscope, Sushi and Jacob's Pillow. This Spring she will travel to Czechoslovakia to choreograph for a film by Robert Elman. Rose is a faculty member at UCR.

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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