STORY WRITTEN BY BRIAN BINGAMAN
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It’s part of both The Bryn Mawr College Performing Arts Series and the 2016 Philly Fringe Festival.
A performance by Philadelphia-based professional modern dance company Philadanco starts at 8 p.m. Sept. 23 in the McPherson Auditorium in Goodhart Hall, 150 N. Merion Ave., Bryn Mawr.
The college’s coordinator of performing arts, Lisa Kraus, noted that the Performing Arts Series is beginning earlier than usual this year in order to be part of “the incredible feast of culture” that is Philly Fringe, and to host a dance company that’s not only known in the region, but nationally recognized. Joan Myers Brown, who founded Philadanco in 1970, was presented with a National Medal of the Arts by President Obama.
This is the third time Philadanco has performed at Bryn Mawr, but they have not been on campus in 10 years, according to Kraus. “For us, it was special to welcome them back,” she said.
Known for what Kraus described as passion and “technical virtuosity,” Philadanco’s 10 dancers will present a program of four works. They are Jawole Willa Jo Zollar’s jazzy and Afro-centric “Hand Singing Song;” company signature piece “Enemy Behind the Gates” by Alvin Ailey disciple Christopher Huggins; David Brown’s “Labess,” which features music by the Afro-Euro a cappella women’s vocal ensemble Zap Mama; and “Between the Lines” by Filipino choreographer Francisco Gella.
Whereas “Labess” is stylish, breezy and harmonic, Kraus said, “Between the Lines” is poetic, classical and “has a lot of depth and darkness to it.”
Tickets are $20, $18 for seniors, $10 for students, Dance Pass holders or members of dancephiladelphia.org, $5 for children under 12. Go to www.fringearts.com or www.brynmawr.edu/arts/series.html, or call (610) 526-5210.
The five-part Performing Arts Series has regular and flex subscriptions at $90 each, $75 for seniors. “Compared to what you would pay to see those artists in another venue, it’s half,” Kraus said.
Coming up next in the series Dec. 3 is singer Lisa Fischer from the film “Twenty Feet from Stardom.”