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Michelle Brandon
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Parsons Dance – 2012 Annual Spring Gala PAINT IT RED

by Michelle Brandon
April 16, 2012
New York, NY
Parsons Dance and Gala Chair Linda Stocknoff announce the company's 2012 Annual spring Gala, Paint it Red, honoring Nancy Browne, Parsons Dance friend and co-commissioner of 2011 premiere work Portinari, on Monday, April 16, 2012 at 7:30 p.m. at Espace, 635 W. 42nd Street, NYC. The evening will begin with cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, and silent auction at 7:30 p.m., followed by a dinner, live auction, and performance by Parsons Dance at 8:30 p.m., then a full night of social dancing. Festive cocktail attire with a splash of red requested. Tickets begin at $700 and are available by calling 212-869-9275, by emailing sandy@parsonsdance.org, or online at www.parsonsdance.org/gala.

Chair: Linda Stocknoff
Co-Chairs: Froma Benerofe, Fiorenza Scholey Cohen, Kelly Ginsburg, Vickie Morris, Barbara Rohdie

Howell Binkley, Charles Chadwell, Ina Sorens Clark, Jason Fletcher, Stephanie French, Alan Ginsburg, William Ivey Long, Stephen B. Morris, Morris Sandler, Linda Shelton, Patsy Tarr, Chris Yegen

Nancy is married to Charles (Chad) Chadwell and has been an enthusiastic supporter of Parsons Dance for almost 20 years. In 2010, Nancy and Chad co-commissioned Portinari, a new duet by David Parsons, which was inspired by the highly acclaimed Brazilian painter, muralist and political activist, Candido Portinari.

Portinari was generously co-commissioned by Nancy Browne, Charles Chadwell, and Jessica Yarmuth. Portinari is dedicated to the honor and memory of Richard Harriman, a mentor, nearly life-long friend and early supporter of David Parsons' work. Mr. Harriman was part of the artistic leadership of David's home community of Kansas City, Missouri. David Parsons' newest duet, Portinari was inspired by the acclaimed Brazilian painter, muralist and political activist, Candido Portinari. Portinari created two 46-foot tall murals, titled "War" and "Peace" for the United Nations General Assembly Building. They were donated by the Brazilian government and first displayed at the UN in 1957. When delegates enter the building, they see "War." As they exit, they see "Peace." The murals took more than four years to complete. In 1962, Portinari died at the age of 58, of poisoning from the lead-based paints with which he worked. Portinari premiered at The Joyce Theater, NYC in January 2011.

Parsons Dance is committed to building new audiences for contemporary dance by creating American works of extraordinary artistry that are engaging and uplifting to audiences throughout the world. The company tours regionally, nationally and internationally. Since 1985, Parsons Dance has toured an average of 32 weeks per year, to a total more than 235 cities, 30 countries, and six continents. Many others have seen Parsons Dance on PBS, Bravo, A&E Network, and the Discovery Channel. Millions watched Parsons Dance perform live in Times Square as part of the internationally broadcast, 24-hour Millennium New Year's Eve celebration. In New York City, Parsons Dance has been featured at The Joyce Theater, City Center, New Victory Theater, Central Park Summerstage, Guggenheim Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art and The World Trade Center. For more information, visit parsonsdance.org.

Artistic Director, David Parsons, founded Parsons Dance in 1987 with lighting designer Howell Binkley. Since then, he has created more than 80 works for the company, through commissions from Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, American Ballet Theatre, the American Dance Festival, Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival, New York City Ballet, Paul Taylor Dance Company, the Spoleto Festival, and Het Muziektheater in Amsterdam, among others. His works have also been performed by BatSheva Dance Company of Israel, English National Ballet, Feld Ballets/NY, Hubbard Street Dance Company, Nederlands Dans Theatre, and Paris Opera Ballet, among many others. He choreographed and directed the dance elements for Times Square 2000, the 24-hour festivities in Times Square celebrating the turn of the Millennium, viewed live on television by billions of people all over the globe.

Mr. Parsons enjoys a remarkable career as a performer, choreographer, teacher, director, and producer of dance. He has toured and taught with his company on six continents. In September 2007, he directed and choreographed Gotham Chamber Opera's production of María de Buenos Aires, which made its world premiere at a sold-out engagement at NYU's Skirball Center for the Arts in New York City. In the July 27, 2007 issue of The New York Times, Jennifer Dunning called him "one of the great movers of modern dance." In June 2007, Mr. Parsons was the first contemporary choreographer to stage work at the centuries-old Arena di Verona, where he choreographed Verdi's Aida. He received the Dance Masters of America's 2011 Annual Award and the 2000 Dance Magazine Award, as well as the 2001 American Choreography Award for his work with AEROS, a production featuring the Romanian Gymnastic Federation broadcast on the Bravo Channel. From 1978-1987, Mr. Parsons was a leading dancer with the Paul Taylor Dance Company, where Mr. Taylor created many roles for him in works such as Arden Court, Last Look, and Roses. He has appeared as a guest artist with the Berlin Opera, MOMIX, the New York City Ballet, and the White Oak Dance Project. As a director and choreographer, he has collaborated with such artists as John Corrigliano; Earth, Wind and Fire; East Village Opera Company; Morton Gould; Donna Karan; Alex Katz; William Ivy Long; Santo Loquasto; Dave Matthews; Milton Nascimento; Robert Rauschenberg; Steely Dan; and Billy Taylor. Film: Fool's Fire, directed by Julie Taymor; American Playhouse; and Rita Blitt's documentary Caught in Paint. Television: Bravo broadcast of Aeros; PBS production of Remember Me, a world premiere production by Parsons Dance and the East Village Opera Company; Parsons Dance repertory production in Denmark; the hit Italian reality television show "Amici;" PBS production of Billy Taylor music with Parsons Dance' and RAI television dance celebration of Pisa, Italy. Commercial work: Audi, Mecedes, Chevrolet, Alfa Romeo, Lion pajamas, and Flair magazine. Fashion: Missoni, Trusardi, Ermenegildo Zegna, Roberto Cavalli.

Born in Chicago and raised in Kansas City, Mr. Parsons received an honorary Doctorate from the University of Kansas City and an honorary Doctorate from the University of Missouri at Kansas City. He is a recipient of the Howard Gilman fellowship at the Jacksonville University MFA program. Mr. Parsons has cultivated an educational partnership with Marymount Manhattan College, which accredits the annual Parsons Dance Summer Intensive. Education outreach, workshops, lecture and demonstration events, and Master Class venues include Juilliard, Columbia Business School and UCLA.

Parsons Dance gratefully acknowledges the following for their support: The Cowles Charitable Trust, The Fan Fox & Leslie R. Samuels Foundation, The Friars Foundation, The Harkness Foundation for Dance, The Joyce Theater, New York State Council on the Arts, Nina W. Werblow Charitable Trust, The Shubert Foundation and Theater Development Fund. In addition, Parsons Dance is supported, in part by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council.
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