CV Arts Preview

The dance sensation Pilobolus returns to the Northeast Kingdom Friday.

Contributions should be sent to jim.lowe@timesargus.com at least two weeks in advance.

Pilobolus danceLYNDON CENTER – Catamount Arts and KCP Presents will host dance phenomenon Pilobolus at Lyndon Institute Auditorium in Lyndon Center at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 21.

The brainchild of founder and Lyndon Institute graduate Moses Pendleton, Pilobolus “embodies … the best in contemporary dance: discovery, making something new with the same standard body parts the rest of us have,” reported the Washington Post.

“It’s as if we’re being given a fleeting glimpse of the inner workings of the universe,” concurs Alastair Macaulay of the New York Times. “Grace,” says the Sunday Oregonian, “meets physical agility to create movement that is as lyrical as it is astonishing.”

“Walklyndon,” a delight of physical slapstick and Monty Python-like pratfalls, will be performed at Friday’s concert. Testing the limits of human physicality and exploring the beauty and power of connected bodies, Pilobolus engages and inspires audiences around the world through performance, education and consultation.

For tickets or information, call 802-748-2600, or go online to www.kcppresents.org.

Abenaki singer-songwriterMONTPELIER – At 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 19, the 2020 Farmers Night Series will present Abenaki singer-songwriter Bryan Blanchette and friends who will perform both contemporary and traditional Abenaki songs, featuring traditional social dance demonstrations. Performances are in the well of the House Chamber each Wednesday night during most of the legislative season, from late January through mid-April.

These new Abenaki songs help demonstrate that Abenaki culture is vibrant and alive. Blanchette plays multiple instruments, writes his own music and lyrics, and sings with a powerful, captivating Abenaki warrior voice.

Vermont State Curator David Schutz said, “Bryan Blanchette creates beautiful soulful music that sustains the culturally rich Abenaki heritage — with music that evokes the past, but especially addresses our own time.

Admission is free; call 802-828-0749, or email jack.zeilenga@vermont.gov.

‘The Tempest’BURLINGTON – Actors From The London Stage (AFTLS), one of the oldest touring Shakespeare theater companies in the world, comes to the Flynn Center for a weeklong residency, including presentations of “The Tempest” in Flynn Space at 7 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, Feb. 20-22.

Filled with romantic machinations, political scheming, and some of Shakespeare’s most vivid characters, “The Tempest” is a perennially popular tale now seen as one of the Bard’s greatest works, resonating more strongly with every passing year.

Founded in 1975 (and co-founded by Sir Patrick Stewart), AFTLS is one of the most established Shakespeare theater companies in the world, bringing together actors from such prestigious companies as the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Royal National Theatre of Great Britain, and Shakespeare’s Globe.

Tickets start at $35; call 802-86-FLYNN (863-5966), voice/relay calls welcome; or go online to www.flynncenter.org.

Vermont Mardi GrasSTOWE – Wednesday, Feb. 19 will be the official kick-off for Mardi Gras at Spruce Peak. Join in for Mardi Gras-inspired family fun and activities, including special themed food offerings and cocktails, kids DIY creations, complimentary photos, and end your day at an amazing concert with two Louisiana musical legends, Dirty Dozen Brass Band and Nathan & The Zydeco Cha Chas.

New Orleans-based Dirty Dozen Brass Band, founded in 1977, are pioneers of the modern New Orleans brass band movement. “The Dirty Dozen Brass Band (is) a national treasure; steeped in both the past and the present, impossible to categorize and mighty funky,” reported The New York Times

The music of Nathan & The Zydeco Cha Chas is the expression of a remarkable South Louisiana family and provides a direct connection to Zydeco’s storied pioneers such as Clifton Chenier and Boozoo Chavis. Dennis Paul Williams, Nathan’s brother, brings his jazz-influenced guitar chops to the band. The eldest Williams brother, Sid ‘El Sid O’ Williams is a Lafayette legend unto himself. Ever since forming the Cha Chas back in 1985, Nathan Williams has shared his unique take on the blues and dance music of Louisiana Creole around the globe, from Lincoln Center in New York to The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.

For schedule, ticket and information, call 802-760-4634, or go online to www.sprucepeakarts.org.

‘They Say a Lady’BURLINGTON – “They Say a Lady Was the Cause of It” is an evening-length dance production that embodies a contemporary exploration of agency, identity and relationships. Inspired, in part, by “Orlando” by Virginia Woolf, and “Undine Geht” by Ingeborg Bachmann, this work examines the complexities of gender roles imposed by society, as well as the fight to reclaim individual narratives and rewrite what society has prescribed.

The 11 dancers performing in this work contribute their own narratives and voices to this important conversation. The dancers, who mostly identify as female, range vastly in age, life experience, and movement backgrounds, from professional to self-taught. Together they bring a rich and varied palette of movement and life experience to the work.

The performance will be accompanied by live, original music by composer and performer Matt LaRocca. His violin will be joined by Kyle Saunier on saxophone and string bass, Polly Vanderputten on cello, and Britta Fenniman Tonn on piano. Vocals will be performed by Roxanne Vought, and Allison and Cameron Steinmetz.

Performances are Feb. 21-22 at The Main Street Landing Performing Arts Center in Burlington, and Feb. 28-29, 2020 at Town Hall Theater in Middlebury, all at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are $25, $15 for students; call 802-382-9222, or go online to www.townhalltheater.org.

‘Diary of a Westward Journey’JOHNSON – “Diary of a Westward Journey,” a dance-theater production about the wagon train movement in the 1800s, will be performed at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 19 at Northern Vermont University’s Johnson campus.

The performance, at Dibden Center for the Arts, will feature the Vermont Dance Collective, directed and founded by NVU-Johnson dance instructor Maris Wolff. Wolff created and is principal choreographer of the program, which is based on pioneer women’s letters and diaries about the wagon train push to reach the perceived land of promise of the American West.

Admission is free; call 802-635-1476, or email maris.wolff@northernvermont.edu.

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