Dance Archives

As the Temperatures Rise, New York’s Dance Makers Soldier On

Here are a half-dozen movement showcases not to miss in June and beyond


The dance season used to slow down when the thermometer went up, but now the creativity flows all year round. It moves outside, it moves upstate, but the dancers keep going, in the boroughs and in traditional downtown spaces. Starting this week, performers from Hawaii, New Jersey, Argentina, Portugal, and middle school, as well as keepers of the Graham flame, grace the city’s stages — and a garden. 

Performance Mix Festival
June 7–10
For the 32nd year, downtown’s Tribeca-based New Dance Alliance, spearheaded by Karen Bernard, has programmed a four-day festival packed with more than thirty dance artists from around the planet. On offer: ten performances plus a reception, a breakfast, an after-party, a workshop, and a four-hour closing event featuring site-specific pieces located all over the Lower East Side’s historic University Settlement house. Included on this season’s programs are choreographers Parijat Desai, Sebastian Abarbanell, Jenn Goodwin, Simon Portigal, Nicholas Rodrigues, Daniel Gwirtzman, Anna Rogovoy, João Costa Espinho, and nearly two dozen more; click here for the full roster.
University Settlement, 184 Eldridge Street,

Ballet Tech Kids Dance
June 7–10
Nestled among the professional dance studios at 890 Broadway is Ballet Tech, an unusual New York City public school (accommodating students in grades four through eight, as well as some high school dancers) with ballet at the center of its curriculum. These gifted students take over the Joyce — a theater actually founded 35 years ago by the school’s artistic director and the company’s primary choreographer, Eliot Feld — for six performances, with new Feld works on pointe and old favorites, like Apple Pie, The Jig Is Up, and Meshugana Dance. On some of the programs is also It’s the Effort That Counts, choreographed by Juilliard graduates Stephanie Terasaki, Conner Bormann, and Riley O’Flynn. Watch the feet fly, and see the future of ballet in our town.
Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Avenue,

10 Hairy Legs
June 7–10
That unfortunate name accurately describes the fact that this is an all-male dance company, but doesn’t hint at the high quality of its technique and its contemporary repertory — some of which, like this year’s world premiere by Yin Yue, is by women. This sixth New York season by the New Jersey–based troupe, founded by Rutgers dance professor Randy James, also includes a first choreographic commission by company member Nicholas Sciscione, performed with live music by Israeli composer Ofer Pelz, who now lives in Montreal. Completing the very diverse program are pieces by Al Blackstone, Raja Feather Kelly, and Christopher Williams. Friday’s show is a benefit, followed by a dessert reception.
Baryshnikov Arts Center, 450 West 37th Street,

Graham 2
June 7–10
Starting more than ninety years ago, Martha Graham upended the expectations of the dance world in every possible way. Though she shied away from the idea that her work might survive her, her acolytes continue to learn and perfect it — and to put it before audiences, both in large uptown spaces and, as here, in the intimate environment of her troupe’s West Village studio, where it will be performed by twelve members of the junior company. In addition to Graham’s stark 1935 Frontier and the brilliant 1948 Diversion of Angels, they’ll show part of her 1967 Cortege of Eagles, as well as dances by early company member Sophie Maslow (the 1941 I Ain’t Got No Home); longtime Graham partner Bertram Ross (the 1978 Nocturne); and A New Place, recently completed by Virginie Mécène, now the Graham 2 program director, to music by Tom Hormel.
Martha Graham Studio Theater, 55 Bethune Street,

Tango & Flamenco Fusion
Weekends through July 1
Explore the Argentine roots of tango and the complex migration of flamenco in an intimate, bilingual environment. The tight team at this precious neighborhood establishment brings live music (by Grammy winner Raul Jaurena on the bandonion, Marga Mitchell singing, and Diego Amador on piano and vocals, complemented by eight other musicians) and dancing (by Yaisuri Salamanca and John Hernan Raigosa, world tango champions, and flamenco dancer Sol “La Argentinita,” from Buenos Aires). Can’t afford the tickets? Bring the family to free brunch-time performances in nearby Thomson Hill Park; full schedule information available at the website below.
Thalia Spanish Theatre, 41-17 Greenpoint Avenue, Sunnyside, Queens,

Hawaiian Performances and Demonstrations
Weekends through September 3
Twenty paintings by Georgia O’Keefe are only some of what pours from the cornucopia of Hawaiian riches on offer this summer in the stunning environs of the Bronx’s Botanical Garden. Both traditional and contemporary hula performances, with live music, take place Saturday and Sunday afternoons, offered by Pua Ali’i ‘Ilima o Nuioka (June 9 and 10; August 12), Pomaikai Klein (June 17), and five other groups. Want to learn this tempting form yourself? On Saturday nights, interactive hula lessons are held on the Conservatory Lawn, along with displays by other visual artists and refreshments (a poke bowl, anyone?) for sale.
New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx,