History, heritage, legacy, lines. Dance Theatre of Harlem pushes the pinnacle of balletic expression with this exhilarating mixed repertory program that features two Detroit premieres. Passage, a ground-breaking contemporary work from choreographer Claudia Schreier, examines the fortitude of the human spirit in recognition of the 400th anniversary of enslaved Africans arriving in Virginia. Higher Ground, the brilliant, Stevie Wonder-inspired social anthem from resident choreographer Robert Garland, is “a marvel” (The New York Times).
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History, heritage, legacy, lines. Dance Theatre of Harlem continues to push the pinnacle of balletic expression with this exhilarating mixed repertory program that features ground-breaking contemporary works from choreographers Claudia Schreier and Robert Garland.
Created specifically for Dance Theatre of Harlem, Schreier’s work, Passage, recognizes the 400th anniversary of enslaved Africans arriving in Virginia in 1619. Exploring the strength of the human spirit in this moving, complex contemplation, Passage features music by acclaimed composer Jessie Montgomery. DTH presents a modern, breathtaking performance that “offer[s] a different future, one where ballet is more daring and more perceptive than ever before” (BroadwayWorld.com).
The program includes the Detroit premiere of Higher Ground, resident choreographer Robert Garland’s latest work set to Stevie Wonder songs penned during turbulent times. The piece pioneers the use of ballet as resistance art, and is “a marvel of a work that shows off Mr. Garland’s many choreographic gifts, from his sparkling musicality to his ability to seamlessly weave classical ballet with influences from modern and social dance” (The New York Times).
Passage was commissioned by the Virginia Arts Festival in partnership with American Evolution. Support for Passage was made possible by the New England Foundation for the Arts’ National Dance Project, with lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Additional commissioning funds provided by the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation through Dance Theatre of Harlem’s Women Who Move Us initiative, O’Donnell-Green Music and Dance Foundation and the Princess Grace Foundation-USA, the City of Norfolk, Virginia, the Friedrich Ludwig Diehn Fund of the Hampton Roads Community Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.