Release Date: February 7, 2020
BUFFALO, N.Y. — The University at Buffalo Department of Theatre and Dance presents the 46th anniversary of Zodiaque Dance Company (ZDC), UB’s premiere resident student dance ensemble. ZDC is one of the longest running student companies in the United States.
The group’s annual spring program will have public performances at UB Center for the Arts Drama Theatre Thursday, March 5 through Sunday, March 8.
ZDC continues to advance student talents through creative investigations and stimulating collaborations. With choreography by esteemed faculty and international professional guest artists, audiences will be treated to an eclectic program encompassing styles as diverse as modern contemporary, hip hop, African gumboot and jazz.
The ZDC is under the leadership of Kerry Ring, artistic director and associate clinical professor, as well as Jenna Del Monte, managing director. The spring program is weighted towards new dances created for ZDC by professional guest choreographers.
Guy Thorne is a principal dancer for internationally-renowned Garth Fagan Dance. Fagan is best known for choreographing Broadway’s “The Lion King.” Thorne is also co-founder and artistic director of FuturPointe Dance in Rochester, NY. He will provide a work mixing African and contemporary styles.
Paula Peters’ teaching, choreographic and performance research focuses on exploring the many facets of jazz dance aesthetics in American culture. She has been an Assistant Professor of Dance at SUNY Fredonia since 2016, and directs the in-house student company Fredonia Dance Ensemble. Prior to teaching, she danced professionally with Spectrum Dance Theater in Seattle for 14 years. Peters will set a modern-style piece on the ZDC dancers.
Brooklyn-born Robin Hibbert possesses degrees in human services, early childhood development and dance from UB. She also studied dance at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center and with Dance Theatre of Harlem, specializing in various West African styles. Hibbert will create a work based on popular South African gumboot dance, a style which evolved from the gold mines as workers engaged in competitive movement while still in their wellington rubber work boots, nicknamed “gumboots.”
Chicago-based choreographer Richard Ashworth is a returning UB alumnus specializing in urban and rhythmic dance, creating a hip-hop piece for this spring’s show. Ashworth currently performs with Chicago’s “Be The Groove’s Collective Beat,” a rhythmic performance ensemble that primarily works with grade school students.
Other highlights of the concert include a work by professional guest artists in-residence, Entity Contemporary Dance – a Los Angeles based group which forges connections between hip hop, contemporary and modern. The work will also be performed by ZDC this March at the annual American College Dance Association Conference at West Virginia University.
Kerry Ring, artistic director, will provide a contemporary work in collaboration with Buffalo composer Kevin McFadden, PhD, a regular piano accompanist for department dance classes.
Other choreographers include: Melanie George, who will be a one-week resident guest artist this semester and will provide a jazz piece; and Michael Bagne, a graduate student in the UB Arts Management Program who will set a contemporary piece upon the company.
Dates and Times:
Thursday, March 5 at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, March 6 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 7 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, March 8 at 2 p.m.
UB Center for the Arts
University at Buffalo
North Campus Directions: ubcfa.org/directions-maps2019
Tickets are also available at the door one hour prior to show. Campus Cash is accepted at the CFA Box Office.