We, like most dance people, love drama. We're all about dying swans and moody contemporary duets.

Let's face it, though: Sometimes dance is even better when it's funny. Any kind of funniness is awesome, but bodies being funny is one of the best kinds of funny there is.

So we were excited to hear that the fabulous Hubbard Street Dance Chicago is pairing up with The Second City (aka the improv group that's basically a feeder for "Saturday Night Live"). Together, they'll create—well, we don't know what, exactly. What we do know is that it'll be witty, smart, and probably very funny.

And they're already in the studio together! This is a Hubbard Street movement workshop at The Second City. (Todd Rosenberg/Hubbard Street Dance Chicago)

While this may sound like a bizarre collaboration, in a way it makes total sense. Hubbard Street works with many choreographers whose pieces are rooted in improvisation. Its dancers, in other words, are master improvisers—just like the members of Second City.

The project will involve performers from both groups, plus Hubbard Street 2 (wouldn't want to leave them out of the fun), and it'll premiere October 16 at Chicago's Harris Theater. We'll let you know more as we hear it!

Epperheimer in Ohad Naharin's Tabula Rasa (photo by Quinn Wharton, courtesy Hubbard Street Dance Chicago)

For the past decade, Kellie Epperheimer has captivated Hubbard Street Dance Chicago’s audiences with her graceful fluidity and elegant lines. Her raw, emotional performances and musical sensitivity make her an artist in every sense of the word. A Los Osos, CA, native, Epperheimer trained at the Academy of Dance and Civic Ballet of San Luis Obispo, and spent a summer at The Juilliard School. She was a founding member of the Cedar Lake Ensemble (later renamed Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet), and joined Hubbard Street 2 in 2005. Since being promoted to the main company in 2007, she’s originated roles in pieces by choreographers including Kyle Abraham, Alonzo King and Twyla Tharp. Catch her at home in Hubbard Street’s Summer Series performances this June, and at this summer’s American Dance Festival, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival and Chicago Dancing Festival. —Courtney Bowers

Dear Kellie,

What a journey you’ve begun—and it’ll be even better than you can imagine.

First, I want to remind you to stay curious, and to keep your eyes and mind open. There’s a lot you don’t know, but staying aware and adventurous will always guide you to greater knowledge. This world will offer you so much inspiration and beauty, and if you let yourself absorb it, it’ll be a wonderful way to grow—as an artist as well as a person. The people you work with and encounter will be your friends, your support and your family in art. You are so lucky you get to work with them, day in and day out. Never take that—or them—for granted.

You’ll definitely feel frustration throughout your career, but don’t

let that defeat you. Keep trying. Learn from each experience. Getting injured will never be easy, but if you nurture yourself correctly and patiently, the healing process will only make you stronger and wiser.

I also want to remind you to embrace the human parts of yourself. You’re not just a dancer, you’re a person, and your life will be more than what happens inside the studio. Stay grounded, maintain a sense of perspective, and you’ll find a healthy balance between yourself and your work. Don’t shy away from expressing yourself as a human, both onstage and off. Your real emotions and feelings are your color palette. Over time, your understanding of what dance is will shift and morph, and take many forms. Appreciate all of them—and stay grateful, little lady!

Hugs,

Kellie

Sure, we all know you can score some sweet deals on fashion or electronics on Cyber Monday. But did you know that dance companies offer discounts on tickets, too?! This little discovery made my post-vacay Monday MUCH happier. These reduced-price tickets to some of the season's best performances are perfect for holiday gifting (or for treating yourself, let’s be real), so don't miss this one-day-only opportunity.

Boston Ballet's The Nutcracker, one of the shows offering Cyber Monday discounts (photo by Gene Schiavone)

Hubbard Street Dance

Pop in the discount code Desire38 here for 38 percent off on Friday or Saturday performances of the Season 38 Winter Series.

Miami City Ballet

Catch the company's production of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker for 30 percent off with the promo code GIFTS15 at this site, or get discounted tix to other season shows, like A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Boston Ballet

50 percent off select performances of Mikko Nissinen’s The Nutcracker? Yes, pleaseeeee. Just head here and use the code CYBERMONDAY.

The Music Center L.A.

The storied venue is offering various discounts on MAJOR dance events right here, including Cloud Gate Theatre of Taiwan, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Compagnie Käfig and American Ballet Theatre.

Orlando Ballet

Use the discount code CYBER here and receive a whopping 25 percent off select seats at shows including The Nutcracker, Don Quixote, Beauty & the Beast and Uncorked.

 

Want more Dance Spirit?

Yes, the days are getting shorter, Nutcracker rehearsals are starting and you're back in school. There are lots of potentially tedious things about September. Fortunately, fall also means a ton of dance events are taking place in most major cities around the country. Here in NYC, Fall for Dance is one of the biggest, and believe us when we say that people go completely nuts for those $15 tickets. (Instantly doesn't even begin to describe how quickly they disappear.)

I was lucky enough to squeeze into the opening night performance at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park. The show included Hubbard Street Dance Chicago in Nacho Duato's Gnawa, New York City Ballet's Maria Korowski and Amar Ramasar in the pas de deux from William Forsythe's Herman Schmerman, Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company in D-Man In the Waters (Part I) and Bend in the Road, and collaboration between Lil Buck and former NYCB principal Damian Woetzel.

My highlights? Gnawa was the definition of fierce, particularly Kellie Epperheimer and Jesse Bechard in the central pas de deux. Hubbard Street is simply the best and strongest ensemble you can find. In Herman Schmerman, I was reminded that Maria Kowroski has perfect legs, and I learned that Amar Ramasar has great humor onstage. I got to see Bill T.'s company live for the first time and D-Man In the Waters (Part I) was an absolutely fearless, gasp-inducing joyride.

Check out the slideshow below, and we'll see you at the rest of the Fall for Dance shows!

[portfolio_slideshow nowrap=0 thumbs=true timeout=4000 showtitles=true showcaps=true showdesc=true]

 

 

 

How'd it get to be August? Curse you, Summer, and your incessant need to fly by! Don't get us wrong: We know it ain't over yet (despite the recent influx of back-to-school commercials). Nevertheless, August always seems to bring a sense of nostalgia—anticipation of the end, reflection on memories made...

But today, on this second day of August, we're nipping the sentimental melancholia in the bud, because we're seriously excited for Fall. Fall for Dance, that is.

Here's a quick overview for FFD newbs: Fall for Dance is an annual NYC festival that brings together renowned dance companies from across the globe. It's basically a goodie bag of dance: Each program is so varied—ballet, modern, tap, hip hop, you name it—that there's truly something for everyone. Plus, with tickets at only $15, it's kind of the perfect opportunity to get a sense of which styles and companies you love, and which aren't so much your faves.

The festival kicks off with two free (yes, free!) performances at The Public Theater's Delacorte Theater in Central Park, September 13 and 14 at 8 pm. Then, tickets for the remainder of the festival, which will take place at New York City Center from October 8–18, will go on sale the following Monday, September 14, at 11 am. Check out the program lineup below, featuring 27 (!) different companies and artists.

Delacorte Theater Performances

Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company: D-Man in the Waters (Part 1) by Bill T. Jones

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago: Gnawa by Nacho Duato

Lil Buck: Bend in the Road (world premiere)

*Additional Company TBA

Program 1 (October 8 and 9 at 8 pm)

Black Grace: Minoi and Pati Pati by Neil leremia

San Francisco Ballet: Variations for Two Couples by Hans van Manen

Russell Maliphant/Sadler's Wells London: Two x Two by Russell Maliphant

Mark Morris Dance Group and Music Ensemble: Words (festival commission) by Mark Morris

Program 2 (October 10 and 11 at 8 pm)

Lucinda Childs Dance Company: Concerto by Lucinda Childs

Semperoper Ballett Dresden: Neue Suite by William Forsythe

Sara Mearns & Company: Stairway to Paradise by Joshua Bergasse

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater: Minus 16 by Ohad Naharin

Program 3 (October 14 and 15 at 8 pm)

Trisha Brown Dance Company: Son of Gone Fishin' by Trisha Brown

Company Sébastien Ramirez & Honji Wang: AP15 by Sébastien Ramirez and Honji Wang

Vuyani Dance Theatre: Umnikelo by Luyanda Sidiya

*Additional Company TBA

Program 4 (October 16 and 17 at 8 pm)

Brian Brooks Moving Company with Juilliard Dance: Torrent by Brian Brooks

The Australian Ballet: Ostinato (world premiere) by Tim Harbour

BJM - Les Ballets Jazz de Montréal: Closer by Benjamin Millepied

Rennie Harris Puremovement: Students of the Asphalt Jungle by Dr. Rennie Harris

Program 5 (October 18 at 8 pm)

Wayne McGregor|Random Dance: FAR by Wayne McGregor in collaboration with the dancers

Pontus Lidberg Dance: New Lidberg (festival commission) by Pontus Lidberg

Aakash Odedra Company: Nritta by Aakash Odedra

The Sarasota Ballet: Les Patineurs by Sir Frederick Ashton

 

Sponsored

Want to Be on Our Cover?

covermodelsearch-image

Video

mailbox

Get Dance Spirit in your inbox

Sponsored