ARTICLES + REVIEWS
The mission of Bruce Wood Dance is to present high-caliber, original, contemporary choreography that
harnesses the power of dance as a tool for entertainment, enrichment, and healing. Fortified by Bruce Wood®’s
aesthetic, BWD produces and maintains his repertoire, commissions new work by resident choreographers and
guest dance-makers, and contributes to the quality of life in Dallas Fort Worth, Texas, and across the nation.
Bruce Wood Dance Company is a 501(c)3 non-profit arts organization. We are grateful for the support of our sponsors.
Bruce Wood is a registered trademark.
Review: BWD Gala Fundraiser I Bruce Wood Dance I Bruce Wood Dance Gallery
Dance with a Kiss
The Bruce Wood Dance Valentine's gala was a romantic and entertaining evening of music, dance, and good company.
Dallas—Bruce Wood Dance knows how to throw a party. Led by executive director Gayle Halperin and artistic director Joy Bollinger, all participants in the company (dancers, board members, staff) opened the doors of the Bruce Wood Dance Gallery in Dallas’ Design District for a Valentine-themed gala, complete with excellent food, great conversations, and of course, exquisite performances. Produced by Larry Lane, Dances from the Heart delivered an exciting new aesthetic, pulling from classical music and opera for its lineup.
It’s the second time having their annual fundraiser in February rather than December, but this event (chaired by Dabney and Ric Abel) had a different essence than last year’s, although equally elegant. A larger crowd in 2018 filled the Granada with excitement, and the evening included more presentations about the company’s achievements and outreach. At their studio, however, they opted for a more intimate sharing of talent over two nights, simply giving dedicated patrons (and some new ones) a heart-stirring evening and letting the performance itself attest to the reach and magnitude of the organization.
As with previous years, the caliber of guest artists that performed alongside the dancers proved quite astonishing. Joseph Thalken, one of the most sought after pianists on Broadway, returned for the fifth time. He directed a string quintet from SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts, and SMU alumnus and soprano Alissa Roca joined as the featured vocalist.
The 2019 Bruce Wood Dance Gala
Before the talent, the evening opened with a delectable buffet dinner, and the cocktail-style setup allowed for mingling and meeting new people. Then patrons were ushered into the performance space for dessert, a short presentation, and the main attraction. Rosalee Kimple, one of Wood’s longtime friends, received this year’s BRUCE award for her unwavering commitment to the company’s vision and to the North Texas dance community. Her charming Texas drawl and heartfelt reminiscing of the late founder made everyone smile.
A stately Austrian curtain provided the backdrop for a platform on which the musicians played. An open space in front, just barely large enough for the ten dancers, was framed on three sides by round tables for the audience. When Roca sang, she meandered through the dancing area or stood on the platform.
Throughout the one-hour performance, the musicians and dancers impressively navigated a range of emotions and moods among the ten segments on the program. Thalken’s hushed opening set the mood for the next work, some dreamy excerpts from Echoes of Enchantment. Warm and inviting, it featured all the instruments, sounding like a much larger ensemble as their notes and Roca’s voice melded beautifully with the six dancers.
A somber tone permeated the next solo featuring Megan Storey, as she journeyed through pained gestural phrases laced with more expansive movements for a haunting effect. As Thalken hit the last note of the Chopin piece, pindrop silence among the viewers continued as Storey exited. Roca lifted the mood with an astonishing rendition of Sempre Libera from Giuseppe Verdi’s La Traviata, flirting with the audience in a shimmering red dress.
Bryan Arias’ hit choreography from a few years back, My Heart Remembers, saw new life with the poignant Clair de Lune duet between Olivia Rehrman and Chad Vaught. The Dallas premiere of Wood’s For Buddy traveled a variety of feelings with mid-20th century Broadway and crooning classics (all instrumental). The audience burst into laughter with the uproarious theatrical section.
After another stirring musical interlude, Jillyn Bryant and Gabriel Speiller displayed brilliant execution and memorable connection over three songs in Kimi Nikaidoh's All Things New. If absolutely pressed to choose a favorite dance of the evening, this would be it. The best vocal moment by far goes to Roca’s soaring delivery of the popular Puccini aria O Mio Babbino Caro. Many moments in the evening likely brought viewers to tears, this one especially.
Finishing with a touch of Broadway, the artists close with Richard Rodgers’ The Carousel Waltz, with charming choreography by Bollinger. Even though BWD is a prominent Dallas company, the intimacy of an evening that went by way too quickly combined with the stellar talent in a venue tucked away in the Design District made the event feel like the best-kept secret of the weekend.
Cheryl Callon I TheaterJones.com
Thursday, February 21, 2019
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 14, 2019
Bruce Wood Dance Presents an Evening of Dance at Dallas Contemporary on March 2, 2019
DALLAS, Texas—Dallas Contemporary and Bruce Wood Dance (BWD) are pleased to present an evening of dance staged inside of Ian Davenport’s exhibition, Horizons. Performed within contemporary art galleries, the evening is a multi–disciplinary and layered approach to exploring visual art, music, and dance as one. Dancers will directly engage with Davenport’s large-scale, dripped paintings. During the performance, musicians from Trio Kavanáh will perform composer Kimberly Osberg’s new work, Interplay, to new choreography. This exciting partnership demonstrates the museum’s commitment to providing cutting–edge programming to audiences. The event begins with a wine reception at 6:30 pm on Saturday, March 2, 2019 at Dallas Contemporary, 161 Glass Street, Dallas, Texas 75207. The performance begins promptly at 7:00 pm.
Tickets can be purchased at Eventbrite.com for $15 for Dallas Contemporary members and $20 for general admission.
Bruce Wood Dance artistic director Joy Bollinger says of the collaboration, “This opportunity to partner with Dallas Contemporary is tremendously exciting. We get to layer Bruce Wood®’s work with the awe–inspiring backdrop of the Horizons exhibit, as well as take part in movement creation to the music of Kimberly Osberg, played live by Trio Kavanáh. It’s an artists’ playground you won’t want to miss.”
Bruce Wood Dance
Described as “emotionally charged and highly kinetic” by ArtandSeek.org, BWD was named “Best Dance Company in Dallas” by D Magazine in 2013, 2014, and 2017; awarded “Best of Dallas Voice” annually since 2014; and appointed to every regional Top Ten list since 2011. Leading the company into its ninth year, Joy Bollinger is committed to BWD’s mission to present high–caliber, original, contemporary choreography that harnesses the power of dance as a tool for entertainment, enrichment, and healing. Fortified by Bruce Wood®’s aesthetic, BWD produces and maintains his repertoire, commissions new work by resident choreographers and guest dance–makers, and contributes to the quality of life in Dallas–Fort Worth, Texas, and across the nation. Upcoming 2019 biannual productions take place June 14+15 and November 15+16 at Moody Performance Hall. brucewooddance.org.
Dallas Contemporary is a non-collecting art museum presenting new and fresh ideas from regional, national, and international artists. Modeled after European art centers and located in an industrial building in the Design District, Dallas Contemporary is one of the only institutions of its kind in the United States, offering temporary exhibitions, important lectures and seminal learning programs. Dallas Contemporary is open Tuesday to Saturday from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm.
Ian Davenport was born in Sidcup, Kent in 1966, and studied at Goldsmiths’ College of Art in London. In 1990, only two years after graduation, Davenport held his first solo exhibition at Waddington Galleries, and in the same year, his work was included in The British Art Show, touring to Leeds City Art Gallery and Hayward Gallery, London. He was nominated for the Turner Prize in 1991, and in 1999 was awarded the John Moores Painting Prize. Davenport has exhibited internationally and held more than 40 solo exhibitions, including the Tate, Liverpool in 2000 and Ikon Gallery, Birmingham in 2004.
Davenport’s work is held in important museum collections throughout the world, including the Tate in London; Centre Pompidou in Paris; National Museum of Wales, Cardiff; Von der Heydt Museum, Wuppertal; and Dallas Museum of Art, Texas.
In 2017, Davenport was invited to produce a pavilion for Swatch for the 57th Venice Biennale. Davenport painted the large–scale installation, Giardini Colourfall, and to coincide with this, designed the limited edition watch, Wide Acres of Time. He has received numerous commissions for public installations, most notably
by Southwark Council to produce Poured Lines: Southwark Street, a 48–meter–long painting which was completed in 2006 as part of the regeneration of Bankside. Davenport has recently collaborated with Meissen Porcelain and designed a special edition bag for Christian Dior.
Kimberly Osberg, originally from Eau Claire, Wisconsin, is an active composer now based in Dallas, Texas. Her work at IU Jacobs School of Music ignited her career as an interdisciplinary collaborator, with prolific experience in dance, film, opera, visual arts, environmental installations, theater, and concert music across the country. In addition to he collaborations, she also has attended a number of premier music festivals as a fellowship composer, including Tanglewood BUTI, the New York Summer Music Festival, the Rocky Ridge Music Festival, IRCAM’s Manifeste, Brevard Music Festival, and the Aspen Summer Music Festival.
She most recently acted as one of the two featured composers for the New Mexico Contemporary Ensemble’s James Tenny Memorial Symposium, premiering several works over the course of the week long festival. She is also an active high school music clinician, giving lectures and clinics on her work and contemporary music to high school music programs throughout the country. This season includes premieres around the world, including new works for solo instruments, band, a short operetta, a tour in Tokyo, Japan, and a premiere with the Dallas Chamber Symphony.
Kavanáh is an ancient Hebrew word for “intention of the heart,” and Trio Kavanáh believes in pushing the limits of classical music in modern times. Utilizing amazing venues, unique repertoire, and technology, they engage audiences on a personal level by providing a complete musical experience. After meeting at Juilliard and playing together in the Dallas opera, Grace Wollett (violin) and Danny Goldman (clarinet) partnered with Dr. Trevor Hale (piano) to form the ensemble. Recent concerts include Hamon Hall at the Winspear, a Steinway Hall tour, and a charity concert atop Reunion Tower. The trio is currently partnering with SamsungVR (virtual reality) to bring concerts into the public’s hands via state–of–the art mobile technology. triokavanah.com
Bruce Wood Dance is made possible by its dedicated patrons and sponsors: Heritage Auctions (HA.com); TACA; Texas Commission on the Arts; National Endowment for the Arts; James+Gayle Halperin Foundation; Donna Wilhelm Family Foundation; Roger Fullington; VisitDallas.com; Ellen Kendrick Creative, Inc.; Lancaster+Associates; the 2019 Commissioners Circle; and Communities Foundation of Texas.