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Michelle Tabnick
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Manhattan School of Music - John C. Borden Auditorium
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RIOULT Dance NY Performs at Manhattan School of Music; January 22

by Michelle Tabnick
January 19, 2015
Manhattan School of Music - John C. Borden Auditorium
120 Claremont Avenue
New York, NY 10027
(917) 493-4428
RIOULT Dance NY, a leading American modern dance company with a classic sensibility, will perform the Dance to Contemporary Composers Series with Tactus on January 22, 2015 at 7:30pm at the Manhattan School of Music's Borden Auditorium, 120 Claremont Avenue, NYC. Tickets are $12 ($7 for students/seniors) and are available online at http://www.msmnyc.edu/Concertgoer/Box-Office, via phone at (917) 493-4428, or at the box office one hour prior to curtain.

In the Dance to Contemporary Composers Series, RIOULT Dance NY commissions new music, collaborates with American composers, and presents dance performance with live music. Consecutive world premieres from 2011-2013 were created through this series, including "On Distant Shores," a 2011 collaboration with composer Aaron J. Kernis, "The Violet Hour," a 2012 collaboration with composer Joan Tower, and "Iphigenia," a 2013 collaboration with composer Michael Torke. These dances reflect Pascal Rioult's support for contemporary classical composers, as well as literary interests in poetry and mythology.

"Iphigenia," conducted by Benjamin Grow, is a dance drama driven by a young girl's transfiguration from innocent child to transcendental heroine. Based on Euripides' Iphigenia in Aulis, it chronicles King Agamemnon's decision to sacrifice his daughter - much to the horror of his wife, Clytemnestra and his daughter's betrothed, Achilles - and Iphigenia's ultimate acceptance of her fate. Through dramatic dance scenes weaved together with a recurring ensemble-the Greek chorus, the part-narrative, part-abstract piece unfolds, reintroducing audiences to this beautifully tragic story.

"The Violet Hour" set to Joan Tower's "Tres Lent" and the newly commissioned "Catching a Wave" for piano and cello, is informed by images gleaned from T.S. Eliot's The Waste Land. "The Violet Hour" evokes the stark beauty and consequent humanity that stems from these images, a time of expectation hovering between darkness and light, reality and dream, memory and desire.

"On Distant Shores," conducted by Kyle Ritenauer, recalls the ancient myth of Helen of Troy. "I always thought Helen got a bad rap," says Pascal Rioult. In this work he sets out to redeem her, imagining she is brought to Troy against her will, where she encounters four god-like warriors though ultimately walks alone as it all fades into a dream.
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