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My Grand Rapids Art Outdoor Artist Profile: Alex Gilford

Earlier this month, Experience Grand Rapids announced the names of 5 artists whose works will be featured on billboards around the state this summer. A juried panel selected their artwork from over 25...more

Posted June 30, 2015

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Grand Rapids Ballet Company Announces Innovative New Dance Series, MOVEMEDIA


Related Document: Grand-Rapids-Ballet-Announces-Innovative-New-Dance-Series-MOVEMEDIA.pdf




FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                  

Contact: Misty Hendricks: 616.454.4771 x10

Grand Rapids, MI... Grand Rapids Ballet Company announces MOVEMDIA, a dance series accelerating creativity, culture, and innovation. MOVEMEDIA is underwritten by the family of Claire and Edsko Hekman. Presenting world premieres by today's most talented dance makers, this series is presented in two programs: March 23-24 and April 6-7 at the Peter Martin Wege Theatre.

"MOVEMEDIA will create new works by some of today's most gifted choreographers, give rise to young talent, and open up a new world of innovative dance. Over the course of several weeks, we will welcome six choreographers to work with uninterrupted time and studio space with our dancers - creating and exploring new ideas, approaches, choreographic techniques, music and media," says Grand Rapids Ballet Artistic Director Patricia Barker.

These works will accelerate creativity and culture, mixing multimedia and choreography for two weekends of stunning new works. The pieces created for MOVEMEDIA will be added to the Company's repertoire that includes existing works by master choreographers and new interpretations of classic full-length productions, creating a new subculture of dance. This continues Patricia Barker's vision for the Grand Rapids Ballet - creating a diverse international selection of dance that offers powerful entertainment for all audiences.

This year, MOVEMEDIA's Artist-in-Residence is Olivier Wevers, a widely acclaimed choreographer and the winner of this year's Princess Grace Award. Grand Rapids Ballet will be presenting three of Wevers' works along with three collaborative works with GVSU faculty: Shawn T. Bible, Assistant Professor of Dance; Dale Schriemer, Associate Professor, Director of Opera Theatre; and Calin Radulescu, Affiliate Professor of Dance and former GRBC dancer. Two of Grand Rapids Ballet's current company dancers, Rachael Riley and Francis Lawrence, will also be showcasing choreography. Rachael has a diverse background in dance and her unique style of movement is captivating. Francis, originally from Australia, has a rich background in modern technique will bring a brilliant twist to his work.

Olivier Wevers, originally from Brussels, Belgium, was a Principal Dancer at Royal Winnipeg Ballet before joining Pacific Northwest Ballet where he was also a Principal Dancer. In 2009, Wevers founded his own dance company, Whim W'Him, in order to collaborate with artists and to further his choreographic vision. The company premiered in 2010 to sold out houses and critical acclaim. In 2011, Wevers received the prestigious Princess Grace Choreography Fellowship. He has choreographed numerous works for companies in Canada, Japan and the United States. Grand Rapids Ballet will present two existing works by Wever on the first program and a world premiere on the second program. Grand Rapids Ballet is honored to have Olivier as a part of MOVEMEDIA's inaugural season.

"Wevers' choreography is full of the unexpected, the theatrical and imaginative." ~Seattle Times

"Olivier Wevers has more than talent: he has an original voice."

The Grand Rapids Ballet is passionate about bringing a new dance experience to West Michigan, with pieces characterized by constant and impressive movement. These new works blend contemporary choreography and a modern take on classical ballet. "Having the chance to dance the choreography of so many great artists, and be part of the creation process as a dancer the last two seasons has opened my eyes to the process of choreographing," says Rachael Riley. "I am very excited to be on the other side of the coin, creating my own choreography on the Company. Being a woman choreographer in a field still predominantly male gives my work a feminine perspective of movement and passion. I hope my choreography will ignite a spark in not only the audience who sees my work, but in the dancers who have worked so hard to bring it to life."

The innovative works of six great artists are presented by the Grand Rapids Ballet Company in MOVEMEDIA during two weekends: March 23-24 and April 6-7, at the Peter Martin Wege Theatre. Tickets may be purchased as a two weekend set for $40, or individually for $25 ($10 for college students). Tickets go on sale February 20 and are available at the Ballet Box Office or Ticketmaster. Specific information on each weekend's lineup will be available soon at The Peter Martin Wege Theatre is located at 341 Ellsworth SW in downtown Grand Rapids.