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Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center 2017/2018 Season to Feature Legendary Choreographers, the Return of The Nutcracker, and New Venues for Angelenos to Experience the Art of Dance 

LOS ANGELES (May 2, 2017) – Los Angelesaudiences will discover a new perspective on many timeless classics interpreted through a contemporary lens as they journey through The Music Center’s dance season and uncover themes of conflict between female strength and societal expectations.  The 2017/2018 Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center (Dance at The Music Center) season is replete with powerful characters, riveting storylines, modern choreography and theatrics that take the traditional narrative ballet to a new level.  Audiences are invited to venture into the world of dance and experience realms of expression beyond expectation.  The coming season opens with the U.S. premiere of Matthew Bourne’s The Red Shoes (September 15–October 1, 2017), a beloved fairytale and Hollywood classic where life imitates art, presented by Dance at The Music Center and Center Theatre Group.  The season continues with the U.S. premiere of Akram Kahn’s Until the Lions presented by The Music Center On Location at The Culver Studios (October 18-21, 2017), an ancient Indian epic reimagined through the eyes of a woman; the world premiere of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® performed by Miami City Ballet (December 7-10, 2017), that brings a holiday tradition back to Los Angeles with an all-new production co-commissioned by The Music Center; The Joffrey Ballet’s Romeo & Juliet (March 9-17, 2018), featuring Shakespeare’s work set in 20th century Italy, beginning with Mussolini-era 1930s and spanning three decades of political strife; Complexions Contemporary Ballet (April 20-22, 2018), including a celebration of the life and music of David Bowie; and American Ballet Theatre’s La Bayadére(July 12-15, 2018),the bewitching story set in thehigh courts of Royal India.  A number of the engagements will be integrated with arts education programs including high school performances and teacher workshops.  Center Dance Arts is the founding supporter of Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center.

Rachel Moore, president and CEO of The Music Center, was a driving force behind the programming, working closely with The Music Center’s Vice President of Presentations and Education Michael Solomon to select the pieces for a season that highlights favorite stories that inspire all ages. “Audiences can always look to Dance at The Music Center to present world-class companies and showcase internationally respected artists,” Moore said.  “Whether they are seeing Romeo & Juliet for the first time, exploring Until the Lions or revisiting the timeless Nutcracker tradition, Angelenos are in for a wonderful treat.”  

“The productions featured in our 2017/2018 dance season show how dance can offer a contemporary portrayal of stories from the past,” Solomon explained.  “While many of our engagements tackle the challenges women have faced throughout history, others use the creativity and aesthetic of movement to salute time-honored musical and dance legends.”

Dance at the Music Center 2017/2018 Season

Matthew Bourne’s The Red Shoes, presented by Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center and Center Theatre Group (U.S. Premiere)

September 15, 2017 – October 1, 2017
The Music Center’s Ahmanson Theatre

Dance at The Music Center opens the season with Matthew Bourne’s signature blend of inventive choreography, whimsical costuming and beguiling theatre in the U.S. premiere of The Red Shoes, presented by Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center and Center Theatre Group.  As a beloved fairytale and Academy Award-winning movie, this captivating story has seduced audiences and inspired generations of dancers with its tale of obsession, possession and one girl’s dream to be the greatest dancer in the world.  A quintessential backstage drama brought to life on stage, the ballet echoes the movie’s storyline where Victoria Page lives to dance, but her ambitions become a battleground between the two men who inspire her passion. 

Bourne’s magical new adaptation of the legendary Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger film reunites him with his regular collaborators and New Adventures Associate Artists who created Sleeping Beauty, Lez Brotherston (set and costumes), Paule Constable (lighting) and Paul Groothuis (sound).  The Red Shoes is set to a new score arranged by New Adventures Associate Artist Terry Davies using the mesmerizing music of golden-age Hollywood composer Bernard Herrmann (most famous for his collaborations with Alfred Hitchcock, Orson Welles and Martin Scorsese).  

“Bourne’s production provides something that Powell and Pressburger by definition couldn’t: the immediacy of flesh-and-blood dancers, right before your eyes,” said Mark Monahan of The Daily Telegraph. “It’s a complex story, one that ricochets between London and France, art and real life. And, brilliantly aided and abetted by his long-standing designer Lez Brotherston, Bourne lets it unfold clearly and urgently, with no prior knowledge of the film necessary.”

The Red Shoes
Choreography: Matthew Bourne
Music: Terry Davies
Sound: Paul Groothuis
Lighting Design: Paule Constable
Set and Costume Design: Lez Brotherston

Akram Khan’s Until the Lions Presented by The Music Center On Location (U.S. Premiere)

October 18 –21, 2017
Live Musicians
The Culver Studios, Culver City, CA

Award-winning choreographer and dancer Akram Khan presents a powerful take on poet Karthika Nair’s book Until the Lions: Echoes from the Mahabharata with the U.S. premiere of Until the Lions by The Music Center On Location™.  An Indian epic reimagined through the eyes of women, Until the Lions explores the notion and physical expression of gender with the tale of Princess Amba, who, after being abducted on her wedding day and stripped of her honor, invokes gods to seek revenge. 

Khan’s only U.S. appearance in 2017, Until the Lions brings together some of the artistic team behind his multi-award winning solo work DESH,including writer Karthika Naïr, visual artist Tim Yip, lighting designer Michael Hulls and dramaturg Ruth Little.  Noted by The Observer as “Thrilling and beautiful …,” the production incorporates kathak, a classical Indian dance, as well as contemporary dance forms and features Khan dancing alongside two remarkable female dancers, Ching-Ying Chien and Christine Joy Ritter.  Khan’s last Los Angeles appearance was in 2007.  The Observer commented, “Khan gives us theatre that satisfies our deep responsiveness to the mythic, while leaving no cloying aftertaste of sentimentality or kitsch.”

A presentation of The Music Center On Location, Until the Lions will take audiences offsite beyond The Music Center’s campus for the first time in the history of Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center.  Held in the round at The Culver Studios in Culver City, CA, Until the Lions will provide audiences the opportunity to reimagine history with a primal tale of the strength and endurance of the female spirit. 

Until the Lions
Director/Choreographer/Performer: Akram Khan
Music: Scored by Vincenzo Lamagna in collaboration with Sohini Alam, David Azurza, Yaron Engler, Akram Khan and Joy Alpuerto Ritter
Lighting Design: Michael Hulls

George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® Performed by Miami City Ballet (World Premiere)

December 7 – 10, 2017
The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion
Live Orchestra
Presented with Commissioning Funds from The Music Center

After a five year absence from The Music Center stages, the performing arts organization brings back a timeless holiday tradition to Los Angeles with a co-commission and world premiere of the new George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® by Miami City Ballet.  The Music Center has made a multi-year commitment to present this performance.

Audiences will celebrate the storybook tale that captures the spirit of the season through the magic of a child’s imagination.  The all-new production reimagines the Balanchine classic with sets and costumes by Cuban-American artist/designer power couple Isabel and Ruben Toledo and features the traditional Balanchine choreography performed by Miami City Ballet dancers. 

The Nutcracker will include, for the first time, student dancers from two L.A.-based arts academies, Colburn School and The Gabriella Foundation’s everybody dance! program and will feature Peter Ilyitch Tchaikovsky’s timeless score played by a live orchestra, along with live vocal music from the Los Angeles Children’s Chorus. 

In collaboration with Miami City Ballet Artistic Director Lourdes Lopez, the Toledos will apply their uniquely individualistic art and design aesthetic to create enchanting new sets and costumes that bring to life a child’s imagination and embellish the fanciful language of dreams.  Isabel Toledo, who has been described as a radical classicist, has been designing and exhibiting her collections twice-yearly since 1984 and became an international household name when she created the lemongrass lace coat dress worn by former First Lady Michelle Obama at President Obama’s first inauguration in 2009.  Ruben Toledo has created illustrations for such prestigious publications as The New Yorker, Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Town & Country and The New York Times, among others.  His work has been exhibited at prestigious institutions including The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute, Victoria and Albert Museum in London and Pitti Palace in Italy.

George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® by Miami City Ballet
Choreographer: George Balanchine © The George Balanchine Trust
Music: Peter Ilyitch Tchaikovsky
Production and Costume Design: Isabel and Ruben Toledo
Projection Design: Wendall K. Harrington
Lighting Design: James F. Ingalls

The Joffrey Ballet’s Romeo & Juliet

March 9-17, 2018
The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion

The Joffrey Ballet returns to Los Angeles with a stunning take on a perennial classic, Romeo & Juliet.  The critically acclaimed retelling of Shakespeare’s iconic tale is set amid the tumult of 20th century Italy and places Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers against a backdrop of politics and war.  The

ballet begins in Mussolini-era 1930s Italy and spans three decades of political strife, illustrating that generations of families can be affected by the decisions of their forefathers.  A storyline relevant to audiences young and old, Romeo & Juliet blurs the lines of dance and violence, illustrating love at its most defiant.

Choreographed by Krzysztof Pastor, The Joffrey Ballet dancers are accompanied by Sergei Prokofiev’s dramatic 1935 score with modern costumes and set design by Tatyana Van Walsum.  The Chicago Sun-Times commented, “Pastor’s work is a marvel, and the Joffrey dancers seem to be catapulted to the moon by it … A masterful achievement on every level.”

This production is presented in association with LA Opera.  The Music Center and LA Opera will each showcase The Joffrey Ballet during the month of March 2018.

The Joffrey Ballet’s Romeo & Juliet
Choreographer: Krzysztof Pastor
Costume and Set Design: Tatyana Van Walsum
Music: Sergei Prokofiev
Lighting Design: Bert Dalhuysen

Complexions Contemporary Ballet‘s Star Dust (West Coast Premiere) and Mixed Repertory

April 20-22, 2018
The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion

Representing one of the most recognized and respected performing arts brands in the world, Complexions Contemporary Ballet is known for breaking the boundaries of dance and removing barriers to creative expression by mixing methods, styles and cultures to create groundbreaking movement.  The company returns to The Music Center to celebrate the life and music of David Bowie with the West Coast premiere of its new work, Star Dust, a tribute to David Bowie. 

A thank you note and a love letter to Bowie, Star Dust is choreographed by founder and master choreographer Dwight Rhoden and features many of the singer’s most beloved hits with glam-rock inspired costumes by Christine Darch.  Star Dust will be accompanied by other repertory piecesas part of the engagement.

The Washington Post described Complexions Contemporary Ballet as “Cross-cultural ballet with attitude … wearing toe shoes has never looked like so much fun,” and The New York Times calls the company “Sculpture in motion.”

Complexions Contemporary Ballet’s Star Dust
Choreography by: Dwight Rhoden
Music by: David Bowie
Staged by: Dwight Rhoden and Desmond Richardson
Costume Design and Construction: Christine Darch
Lighting and Set Design by: Michael Korsch

American Ballet Theatre’s La Bayadère

July 13-15, 2018
The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion

On its eleventh visit to The Music Center, American Ballet Theatre (ABT) will perform the classic 19th century ballet La Bayadère.  One of the world’s great dance companies, ABT’s stellar roster of international ballet stars will present a mesmerizing classical ballet performance.

Audiences will fall under the spell of the bewitching story of eternal love, mystery, fate and justice set in the high courts of Royal India.  La Bayadère portrays the love story of Nikiya, the temple dancer, her lover Solor and the vengeance that keeps them apart.  With gilded set designs and lavish costumes that conjure exotic locales, ABT’s La Bayadère unveils a world of noble warriors, royal deceit and beautiful dancers.  According to the New York Post, La Bayadère is“simply smashing...a supreme artistic achievement.  La Bayadère is a ballet miracle...a production that could be rivaled by no other company in the world today!”

This ground-breaking production by Natalia Makarova, after Marius Petipa, includes music by Ludwig Minkus, specially arranged by John Lanchbery.  La Bayadère will be presented for the first time on The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion stage. 

American Ballet Theatre’s La Bayadère
Choreographer: Natalia Makarova after Marius Petipa
Music: Ludwig Minkus, specially arranged by John Lanchbery
Scenery: PierLuigi Samaritani
Costume Design: Theoni V. Aldredge
Lighting Design: Toshiro Ogawa

Season tickets/subscriptions for Dance at The Music Center are on sale now.  Single tickets will be available for purchase on August 7, 2017 for the 2017 engagements.  Single tickets for the 2018 engagements will go on sale October 23, 2017.  For tickets and information, call (213) 972-0711 or visit

Photos available upon request.

About Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center

Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center is one of the leading presenters of dance on the West Coast. The celebrated series offers significant works by prestigious ballet and contemporary dance artists from around the world. Entering its second decade, Dance at The Music Center continues to be a powerful commissioning force through the support of new works and artists-in-residence projects by today’s most influential companies and choreographers. Performances take place throughout The Music Center, including the historic Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, the distinctive Ahmanson Theatre and the iconic Walt Disney Concert Hall, providing the ideal setting for inspiring dance experiences.  

About Center Theatre Group

Center Theatre Group, one of the nation’s preeminent arts and cultural organizations, is Los Angeles’ leading nonprofit theatre company, programming seasons at the 736-seat Mark Taper Forum and 1600 to 2000-seat Ahmanson Theatre at The Music Center in Downtown Los Angeles, and the 317-seat Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City. In addition to presenting and producing the broadest range of theatrical entertainment in the country, Center Theatre Group is one of the nation’s leading producers of ambitious new works through commissions and world premiere productions and a leader in interactive community engagement and education programs that reach across generations, demographics and circumstance to serve Los Angeles.

About Center Dance Arts

Center Dance Arts is proud to celebrate 12 years as the founding supporter of Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center.  Center Dance Arts offers members the opportunity to support world class dance engagements and commission future masterpieces, inspire thousands of children with student performances, school assemblies and masterclasses, as well as interact with celebrated dancers and distinguished dance luminaries at exclusive events that enrich audiences’ passion for dance.  For more information, visit

About The Music Center

As L.A.’s performing arts destination, The Music Center is L.A.’s home to the world’s greatest artistic programs and events.  With four iconic theaters and four renowned resident companies – Center Theatre Group, the LA Master Chorale, the LA Opera and the LA Philharmonic – and recognized for its illustrious dance programming, Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center, The Music Center is a destination where audiences find inspiration in the very best of live performance, as well as nationally recognized arts education and free and low-cost arts engagement experiences.  With The Music Center On Location, the non-profit performing arts organization brings events and activities to locations outside of its Downtown Los Angeles campus.  The Music Center also programs and manages Grand Park, a 12-acre adjacent greenspace, with year-round free programming.  For more information, visit   Follow The Music Center on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat (@MusicCenterLA).


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