"The 2006 dance story-in-waiting is the long-range viability of the recently formed Indianapolis School of Ballet and Indiana Ballet Company along with its partner Russian Ballet Academy of Indiana. They are part of the ripple effect of Ballet Internationale’s demise prior to its 2005 Nutcracker.
Gregory Hancock Dance Theatre and Dance Kaleidoscope, along with other Indianapolis performing and presenting companies, honored BI Nutcracker and season ticket holders’ tickets for their respective productions throughout the 2005-2006 season. Almost all performing and cultural organizations throughout Indianapolis hurriedly assured the public their boards are fiscally responsible.
The lingering dismay is with BI’s insensitive treatment of students at the now-defunct Clara R. Noyes Academy, and with considerable funds transferring to Cincinnati Ballet along with a select number of BI company members while the Murat Centre, the proprietors of 502 N. Capitol and the remaining dancers were left scrambling to fill the economic void.
Indianapolis School of Ballet, Russian Academy and Indiana Ballet Company have hired former BI dancers and teachers. The latter have also taken positions with other dance studios located across the city, resulting in these organizations emerging into news coverage. Directors of these studios and academies report an increase in their rosters as former Noyes students find new artistic homes.
Central Indiana Dance Company remains strong with a Nutcracker production playing to capacity audiences. Kenyetta Dance Company and Iibada Dance Company have developed a distinctive aesthetic and audience niche. KDC is moving into mainstream programming (with Dance Kaleidoscope mentoring); IDC is becoming a leading praise dancing company, along with Greater Vision Dance Company.
Project in Motion explores artistic process-in-performance. Susurrus makes us aware of our relationship to places and spaces. They closed this fall’s Fringe Festival with a provocative exploration of myth and pop culture. Motus Dance Theatre closed its season with a dance drama deconstructing feelings about holidays and ritual.
As always, DK and GHDT presented a season of fresh choreography and revivals that speak to us of our contemporary experiences and our heritage. Both effectively partnered with other community organizations, DK especially with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra for the Gershwin project; GHDT with area churches for a refreshing holiday program.
Pike Performing Arts Center and Clowes Hall continued to bring nationally renowned companies, including Martha Graham, Alonzo King and Jose Limon/Doris Humphrey.
Butler University Jordan College of Fine Arts through its vigorous collaborations staged cutting edge works and presented a platform for Joe Goode, who reminds us that good performance emerges from people seeking to live in harmony with the physical and human world for which we have singular and collective responsibility.
Asante Children’s Theatre delivered what could be the city’s most explosive message with Who’s Yo Daddy? (A Hip Hopera), spotlighting young black male responsibility and strong values held by African-American families.
Savion Glover’s larger than life tap dance performance blew us away at Madame Walker’s 80th anniversary kick-off. Phoenix Theatre hosted Ricardo Mendes in a riveting Nijinsky’s Last Dance.
Park Tudor’s Tap Team and the Boy’s Club at Jordan Academy of Dance at Butler University have effectively challenged the boys-don’t-dance mentality. Michael Vernon’s appointment to head the Indiana University School of Ballet at the Jacobs School of Music is further proof that our region is finally finding its feet.