Luna Negra Dance Theater announces 2011–12 season
While not all of the company’s new works were keepers—and it really should get its website under control—Luna Negra Dance Theater’s was, overall, a stunner. Its nearly all-new stable of members , which had a lot to do with the success of its overnight reinvention, as a much edgier, nervier and riskier ensemble.
LNDT will again double down, the biggest change being an expansion from two to four full programs in Chicago. Fall- and spring-season one-night-stands at thecontinue; Ramírez Sansano, also a choreographer, will push his prolificacy with multiple premieres and restagings, including a new all-ages show to launch LNDT’s kids’ program, Luna Niños. Its season concludes at the , as , with a June performance run dedicated to progressive choreography by Latin artists.
Kickoff ¡Mujeres! lands smack in the center of Hispanic Heritage Month and features three works inspired by influential Latinas. Sixteenth-century Spanish regent Queen Joanna of Castile, a.k.a. “Juana la Loca,” is the touchpoint for a world premiere by Asun Noales, the choreographer who heads Otra Danza, company-in-residence at the Grand Theater in Elche, in southern Spain. Ramírez Sansano contributes Not Everything, a new creation triggered by the work of Mexican documentary photographer Graciela Iturbide, 14 of whose images are in Chicago’s . And I’m looking forward to the return of Paloma Querida, of Frida Kahlo’s many facets. The October 1 performance is at 6:30pm, as it precedes Luna Negra’s annual gala fundraiser, Noche de Luna.
“A spectacular adventure filled with flying pendulums, jungle spies, bursting water balloons, secret laboratories and other mystifying obstacles” is what young dancegoers can look forward to at Luna Niños, during a one-hour, premiere production by Ramírez Sansano titled Moniquilla y el Ladrón de Risas (Moniquilla and the Thief of Laughter). Moniquilla and her friends, Matias and Veronica, will solve the mystery of why the world’s children have stopped laughing, six times between December 2 and 11, 2011, at a venue and on days yet to be announced.
LNDT’s spring Harris engagement occurs on March 24, 2012, a new Carmen created by Ramírez Sansano. CARMEN.maquia will be Luna’s first-ever evening-length work, to Bizet’s score with costumes by Spanish fashion designer David Delfin, and sets by Luis Crespo. The National Dance Company of Wales premiered Crespo and Ramírez Sansano’s pared-down rethinking of classic ballet Don Quixote earlier this year.
Diminutive, detonative company member Mónica Cervantes and Argentine guest choreographer Diana Szeinblum unveil premieres at Luna Nueva, June 7–10, 2012 at the Museum of Contemporary Art. Sextet En busca de, made by Ramírez Sansano for Barcelona troupe IT Dansa in 2009, completes the summer triple bill in its U.S. premiere.
Touring engagements to ten states as well as to Brazil, Panama and Spain are planned, and LNDT’s in-school program DanceReach expands to 26 residencies in nine CPS schools, from Chicago Lawn’s Tarkington to Edgewater’s Swift. Its advanced-training and preprofessional immersion program, Project Luna, begins this Monday, June 27. Two participants will be selected to apprentice with the company.