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Michelle Tabnick
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Flushing Town Hall and Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company Present CrossCurrent VI, April 7

by Michelle Tabnick
March 18, 2019
Flushing Town Hall
137-35 Northern Blvd.
Flushing (Queens), NY 11254
(718) 463-7700 x222
Flushing Town Hall (FTH) is pleased to collaborate with Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company to present CrossCurrent VI which will feature a showcase of new works by Nai-Ni Chen and collaborator New Asia Chamber Music Society. A discussion will follow the performance. Tickets for are available online at www.flushingtownhall.org or by phone at 718-463-7700 x 220.

In this sixth installment of CrossCurrent, Nai-Ni Chen will be featuring two new works in progress. The first is Bamboo Rap: a collaboration between Nai-Ni, several hip-hop artists such as Kwikstep, Rockafella, DJ Cool-V from New York and Newark, New Jersey; and Chinese bamboo rap artist Xing Ye Ma and Yuchen Jin from Beijing. Movement for Bamboo Rap is a conglomeration of Peking Opera, Martial Art, Hip-Hop and contemporary dance. Nai-Ni Chen is planning on using this newly mixed vocabulary to tell the story of the Chinese American immigration from the past to the present. The New Asia Chamber Music Society will also be showcasing a new piano trio piece by upcoming composer Lan-In Winnie Yang.

"We are excited to see Nai-Ni Chen here to showcase her upcoming new work," says Ellen Kodadek, Executive and Artistic Director.

Nai-Ni Chen established her company in 1988 and has since grown to be one of the most widely toured and presented Asian American dance companies in the United States, with 18 awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, 8 tours abroad and over 30 national tours, reaching 40 states in America. Her works have been commissioned by the Joyce Theatre Foundation, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, the New Jersey Ballet, Ballet Met and Dancing Wheels. The Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company is currently in residence at the New Jersey City University in Jersey City, NJ. Well known for her collaboration with renowned composers for original music such as Tan Dun, Jason Kao Hwang, Joan La Barbara, Kenji Bunch and Glen Velez, Nai-Ni Chen started the CrossCurrent series at Flushing Town Hall in 2013 focusing on collaborative works with artists from around the world. 

As an immigrant citizen, Nai-Ni Chen uses her work to personally respond to the condition of the media and democracy today. Nai-Ni Chen's most recent work, developed in a residency in a festival Trier, Germany, titled "We….the people" represents her reaction to the crisis of faith and trust at this time. The new work, currently titled Truthbound for a trio of dancers with newspaper and plastic as costumes, received critical acclaim in Germany. Volksfreund Critic, Eva-Maria Reuther wrote in 2018 (translated by the presenter):

“In their body and visual language, sensitively creative fantasy and poetry. Tradition and experiment are combined with dance-like precision and dynamics. From the printed word and its trust comes the dance which is the first part of the work. The two dancers Greta Campo and Rashidi Lewis sculptures are "packed" in newspapers. Sometimes they seem like advertising pillars. Then again, their combative movements are reminiscent of the historical warriors of the Beijing Opera or old Far East woodblock prints. Inside show the two dancers.  In the second part, they discover their own identity in the light that comes.”

Tickets for CrossCurrent VI are available online at www.flushingtownhall.org or by phone at 718-463-7700 x 220. Programs are subject to change, but the inspiration will prevail. Stay after the performance and learn more about the arts and artists. 
This season, Flushing Town Hall is opening its doors to teenagers - for FREE. Under the new "Teen Access Program", all 13- to 19-year-old boys and girls (whether a member or not) will be welcomed to attend any performance for free. The program is designed to appeal to students and help foster a greater love in the arts and culture.
About Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company

Bridging the grace of Asian elegance and American dynamism, the Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company is a premier provider of innovative cultural experiences that reflect the inspiring hope and energy of the immigrant's journey. The company's ground-breaking works celebrate the cross-cultural experience. Its productions naturally bring forth issues of identity, authenticity, and equality.  In performance, the company's graceful and athletic dancers carries the audience across time and cultural boundaries to a new place where tradition meets innovation and form unite with spirit. Each dance reflects Nai-Ni Chen's personal vision as an American artist with deep roots in the Asian culture, developing extraordinary choreography influenced by cultures around the world,  The company's powerful and elegant productions have been presented at some of the most prestigious concert halls in America, eight international tours spanning the globe as well as appearing on a number of television specials on PBS , ABC, CBS, and WNYC.

Programs of the Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company are made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, the New Jersey Cultural Trust, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the Hyde and Watson Foundation, The Turrell Fund, E.J. Grassman Trust, The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey, the Cultural Ministry of the People's Republic of China,  the Live Music for Dance Program of New Music USA, the Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, the Rapid Response Program of American Dance Abroad, the Association of Performing Arts Presenters' Cultural Exchange Fund, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, PSEG, Proskauer, WAC Lighting, and the Glow Foundation. More information about the Company can be found at www.nainichen.org or email: info@nainichen.org
About New Asia Chamber Music Society

Hailed by New York Concert Reviews as "an impressively organized and professional group… comprised of many young and gifted players", the New Asia Chamber Music Society (NACMS) was founded in 2010 by an entrepreneurial group of young Asian-American virtuosi. Propelled by a shared passion for classical chamber music performance, the members of NACMS are prize winners of world renowned international competitions, graduates from America's most prestigious music schools, including The Juilliard School and the Curtis Institute, and appear regularly on major stages across the globe. Based in New York City, NACMS is committed to bringing audiences exciting chamber music performances of the highest caliber and innovation. By delving into the giants of traditional chamber music repertoire, cultivating new voices of contemporary composers that meld elements of Western and Eastern cultures, and collaborating with a broad network of art organizations - NACMS is creating a trifecta of innovation to enable new concert-going experiences for the audience. This exciting young collective also seeks to engage its technologically-wired peers around the world with its lively social media presence, fostering a more interactive and social environment for chamber music performance & presentation.

The New Asia Chamber Music Society was the recipient of the 2016 Huang-Yu-Ting Memorial Award and New Music USA's project grant. 
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