Arts Are Essential | Arts & Culture June 11 – 18

PHOTO: Paul B. Goode | Paul Taylor Dance Company in Promethean Fire

Paul Taylor Dance Company returns to The Music Center as part of the performing arts center’s “Dance at Dusk” outdoor performance series. The company’s return includes live performances on Jerry Moss Plaza featuring the West Coast Premiere of Kyle Abraham’s “Only the Lonely” and Taylor’s Iconic “Promethean Fire. The presentation will offer audiences a host of experiences in which they can engage with the world-renowned modern dance company. Five in person performances (June 16–20, 2021), part of the return of live experiences at The Music Center, will feature Abraham’s critically-acclaimed 2019 work, Only the Lonely, set to the music of Shirley Horn, and the beloved and iconic Taylor work, Promethean Fire, created in 2002 after 9/11, which suggests that even after cataclysmic events, the human spirit finds renewal and emerges triumphant.

As part of this dance residency, The Music Center is celebrating art as social engagement—between those who perform and those who witness performance—through an innovative digital experience. In a technological first for both The Music Center and Paul Taylor Dance Company, the public, both in person and at home, will participate in a one-of-a-kind interactive experience called The Music Center’s Body Language. Via question prompts, the public as well as Paul Taylor Dance Company members will contribute their thoughts about dance, plus meaningful moments and memories of live performances that inspire and move them. These contributions will become visual scapes depicting signature and iconic Paul Taylor movements. These visual scapes will be publicly available for download on musiccenter.org, allowing everyone in Los Angeles and the world to enjoy the digital moment.

The Music Center’s Body Language reestablishes that unspoken connection and energy between audience and performer that was sorely missed during the pandemic. The innovative digital experience is a creation of MAP Design Lab, in collaboration with The Music Center and Paul Taylor Dance Company, and will change each evening, creating a one-of-a-kind, interactive opportunity. Both prior to and after the performances, and during the Sunday night free livestream, this interactive interplay will be showcased on the LED screens on Jerry Moss Plaza at The Music Center, as well as on screens at home. Limited tickets are still available at musiccenter.org. Tickets are sold as a pod of four tickets. The Sunday evening performance (June 20) will be livestreamed FREE for the public at musiccenter.org.

PHOTO: Robert Ascroft | Saxophonist Wayne Shorter

On Monday, June 21 at 7:00pm, The Broad Stage streams for one-night-only, free to the public, a brand-new concert honoring eleven-time Grammy Award–winning composer, saxophonist and Kennedy Center award medalist Wayne Shorter with four-time Grammy Award–winning bassist, composer and vocalist Esperanza Spalding, Terri Lyne Carrington and Leo Genovese. The concert is preceded on Monday, June 14 and Tuesday, June 15 at 6:00pm by on-line screenings of the 28 minute film WS, a longer super nova. The film, directed Arthur Jafa and produced by Nanette Nelms, records an ongoing and intimately wild conversation between Shorter and Spalding at the home of Shorter’s friend Frank Gehry. Gehry’s home is a famously deconstructed habitable art space and it makes room for Shorter’s stories to, like his music, zig zag their way to the point.

PHOTO: Carmen Daneshmandi | South Pasadena News | Bassist, composer and vocalist Esperanza Spalding

WS, a longer super nova provides a rare stream-of-consciousness glimpse into the genius minds of these two jazz masters. An artist in search of a precise proximity between the seen and heard, director Jafa separates sound from image, only to collide them, forcing both eye and ear to find their balance in heart connection. A slice-of-life profile, a blues haiku, WS captures the dark matter entity that is Wayne Shorter.

The concert and the film are free to the public. For more information please visit thebroadstage.org/revealiphigenia. Unlike previous episodes of REVEAL, these programs will only be available at the announced airing times.

 

PHOTO: Raymond Shum | South Pasadena News | Tetsuro Shigemastu in 1 Hour Photo at East West Players.

East West Players (EWP), the nation’s largest producer of Asian American theatrical works, presents Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre (vAct)’s 1 Hour Photo, written and performed by Tetsuro Shigematsu. vAct collaborated with a Vancouver based film production company, Brightlight Pictures, to produce a high quality, 75 minute cinematic adaptation of 1 Hour Photo accompanied by a live talkback with Tetsuro Shigematsu.

1 Hour Photo is a true, moving portrait of a Japanese Canadian man’s quest to find beauty in the depths of a savage century, as he journeys from finding love in a WWII incarceration camp to rebuilding his life as a scientist, businessman, and father. A heartfelt exploration of a life well-lived, 1 Hour Photo employs the use of intricately crafted miniatures to explore the artifact of Mas Yamamoto’s life inside and beyond internment.

“East West Players is excited to host the US virtual premiere of 1 Hour Photo. In this elegant, moving production we learn about the forced incarceration of Japanese Canadians from the memories of Mas Yamamoto,” says EWP Producing Artistic Director Snehal Desai. “Tetsuro’s animated and heartfelt storytelling coupled with Susan Miyagishima’s intricate, transporting miniatures create an experience that you won’t want to miss.”

Single tickets for 1 Hour Photo are now available at www.eastwestplayers.org.