Smuin Contemporary Ballet kicks off the new year with Dance Series 1: Love Smuin, a diverse program featuring the first company of internationally acclaimed choreographer Gina Patterson’s poignant You Are Here, as well as two acclaimed works by the former choreographer in Residence of Smuin Amy Seiwert: a charming homage to country legend Patsy Cline in Dear Miss Cline, and Been Through Diamonds, a neo-classical look at the relationships between four couples showcasing Seiwert’s geometrically inventive movement.
This program will also be offered as an on-demand virtual streaming option in March, after the live performances end. Dance Series 1: Love, Smuin will tour the Bay Area beginning with shows in San Francisco (February 4-13), followed by Walnut Creek (February 18-19) and Mountain View (February 24-27). February). Tickets ($25-$99) are available by calling individual venues (see below for details) or visiting www.smuinballet.org.
You Are Here by Gina Patterson is a moving work inspired by loss and perseverance set to the music of Italian pianist Ludovico Einaudi. It received its world premiere with the Cincinnati Ballet, where it was called “powerful and whirling…an endless series of surprises” by the Cincinnati Enquirer. Patterson has been hailed as a choreographer of “surprising originality” by Backstage Magazine. Dance Magazine praised her work, “Patterson has a voice, that ever-elusive thing, and whatever the future of ballet, choreographers like her will always have a place in it.” She has created more than 100 choreographies for corporations, universities and international audiences, including thirteen evening productions, such as Emmy Award-winning “Liquid Roads” for MADCO, an original adaptation of “Romeo and Juliet.” for CoDa21 in Puerto Rico. , and a unique “Hansel and Gretel” created for the Croatian National Theater Ballet Ivan pl. Zajc in Rijeka. Patterson’s work encompasses concept and direction, collaborating across disciplines with non-linear and interactive creations, utilizing multi-sensory triggers and innovations in the use of story, space and place. A recently awarded Bogliasco Fellowship in Italy follows accolades such as a Choo San Goh Prize and a nomination for a Isadora Duncan Dance Prize.
Two favorites of Amy Seiwert, Smuin’s former choreographer-in-residence, will also be revived for Dance Series 1. the San Francisco Examiner for its “playful yet challenging partnership”, describing the dancers as “effortless: male and female tumble, somersault, and sway with acrobatic aplomb”. Seiwert’s Been Through Diamonds, her first work as Smuin’s choreographer in residence, also returns. On Mozart’s “String Quintet in C minor”, a geometrically inspired movement is presented in this neo-classical look at the relationships between four couples. Seiwert was mentored by Michael Smuin for eight of her nine years as a dancer with the company. Artistic Director Celia Fushille appointed her as Smuin’s first choreographer-in-residence after his retirement from dance in 2008. As a choreographer, Seiwert has pushed the boundaries of dance, collaborating with artists from other disciplines and experimenting with all its diverse forms and expressions from a classical base, making her an invaluable voice in the Bay Area dance community. Her signature choreography has been described by the San Francisco Chronicle as “keeping the founder Michael SmuinThe legacy of shameless showmanship lives on!”
Following the live performances, this program will be offered as an on-demand virtual streaming option, available during the month of March.