In the world of modern dance, it can be difficult for choreographers to chisel their own distinct style of movement from the established block. Bill T. Jones, though, has never had that problem—and now, Salt Lake City is lucky enough to have Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company bringing one of his unique pieces to town.
Jones, for his part, is having a hot year—he just captured a Tony Award for Best Choreography for the Broadway sensation Fela! Such recent accolades, though, are really just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the illustrious and decorated career of this socially engaged and evocative choreographer. He even received a MacArthur Foundation “genius” award in 1979.
The piece of his that RWDC is staging is a visually stunning work from 1995 called “Duet,” set to music from Madagascar and the Ivory Coast. “Duet” will be performed by various pairs of dancers, depending on the night of the performance. Thursday will see Jo Blake with Caine Keenan; Friday will feature Elizabeth Kelly with Barbara Powers; and Saturday will see Blake return to the stage, paired with Tara McArthur.
Also on the bill for the evening are repertory pieces “Bittersweet Chocolate” by David Rousseve, excerpts from Susan Marshall’s “Cloudless” (a work City Weekly named “Best Imported Work of Genius” in its 2009 Artys Awards) and a world premiere of Charlotte Boye-Christensen’s “Key,” a five-part examination of the gifted, exceptionally unusual musician Glenn Gould.