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Renowned Dance Company to Perform Oct. 5 at UW


September 27, 2011 — Wyoming residents will experience a rare opportunity to enjoy one the world's pre-eminent dance companies when the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company performs Wednesday, Oct. 5, at 7:30 p.m. in the University of Wyoming College of Arts and Sciences auditorium.

UW's 2011-2012 Eminent Artists-in-Residence, the dance company will perform the acclaimed work "Serenade/The Proposition." Tickets cost $10 for students, $14 for the public and $12 for senior citizens. For tickets, information, and group rates, call (307) 766-6666 or go online at http://www.uwyo.edu/finearts.

One of three works that grew from Jones' interest in Abraham Lincoln, "Serenade/The Proposition" is described as his first attempt to grapple with issues of historical weight using the tools of dance and theater.

Critics enjoyed the historical escapade. Lisa Jo Sagolla of Backstage magazine said it was "a lusciously intellectual dance-theatre probe into the nature of history."

"Lincoln factored really strongly into Bill's life. But before he could tackle Lincoln, he realized he needed to tackle history, he needed to establish what history is and how we encounter it," says former company member Leah Cox, now the company's education director. She says Jones invited input from the entire company, many of whom were decades younger than him.

"Bill was surprised to learn that many of us didn't really have heroes, and that we didn't feel that connected to history," Cox says. "We didn't have anywhere near that relationship to history that he expressed."

The result of Jones' effort is a spirited and lyrical 60-minute production that moves gracefully from images and texts of early America to contemporary ideas of identity and belonging described in the dancers' own words.

"Being part of the piece made me realize that society is not here to serve me. I have a larger obligation to have a regard for and be an active participant in society, and to be intentional in how I interact with others," Cox adds.

Photo:
Paul Matteson; Peter Chamberlin (being lifted) and Maija Garcia are among members of the renowned Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company that will perform Wednesday, Oct. 5, at the University of Wyoming. (Paul B. Goode Photo)

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