Experiences with hearing loss inspire Murphy/Smith Dance Collective’s latest dance work

By Steve Sucato Whether it is laughter, birds chirping or the rush of a car as it passes by, sound is integral to life. So what happens when sound is removed from our lives? That question inspired the Murphy/Smith Dance Collective’s new work, See What I Hear, which the company will perform Nov. 15 and 16 at the Kelly-Strayhorn Theater. The 60-minute multimedia work, choreographed by … Continue reading Experiences with hearing loss inspire Murphy/Smith Dance Collective’s latest dance work

Pittsburgh’s acclaimed newMoves Contemporary Dance Festival Biggest Yet

By Steve Sucato When Kelly-Strayhorn Theater Executive Director Janera Solomon was putting together the theater’s inaugural newMoves Contemporary Dance Festival, in 2009, few dance artists outside of Pittsburgh had heard of the theater. Now, in its fifth year, the annual festival and the theater are becoming known nationally. That led to a record 40 emerging-choreographer applicants from around the country seeking to take part. “This … Continue reading Pittsburgh’s acclaimed newMoves Contemporary Dance Festival Biggest Yet

Culture Clash

By Steve Sucato Was modern-dance pioneer Ruth St. Denis a racist? St. Denis (1880–1968) introduced Eastern culture into Western dance. For her famous “Oriental” dances of the early 1900s, she donned makeup to change the color of her skin a la Al Jolson, and costumed herself based on museum photographs. In his latest dance work, Ruth Doesn’t Live Here Anymore, Santa Monica-based dancer/choreographer Lionel Popkin uses St. Denis’ … Continue reading Culture Clash