Christopher K. Morgan & Artists
5th Anniversary Concert
Christopher K. Morgan & Artists celebrates 5 years as one of the Metro DC area’s fastest growing and most prominent modern dance companies with performances at American Dance Institute on Friday, October 9 at 8 pm and Saturday, October 10 at 3pm and 8pm. The 5th Anniversary Concert will be an exhilarating evening of dance looking back at some of the company's most beloved works as well as a special preview excerpt of Morgan’s highly anticipated evening length solo Pohaku.
Opening the concert will be Assistant Director Tiffanie Carson’s 2014 work Deprivation. This work marked her choreographic debut on the company and is a stunning ensemble dance that highlights the strong physicality and performance quality of the dancers of CKM&A. With an arresting lighting design by longtime CKM&A collaborator Brain S. Allard, Deprivation is an investigation of stimulus and the lack thereof.
In addition to celebrating 5 years of his eponymous dance company, Morgan will celebrate 10 years of one of his signature solo works, Rice. Said to be "Charming & Poignant" by Jennifer Dunning in The New York Times, Rice is a journey in text and movement that uses food and memory to explore a child’s perception of his racial identity. The work first premiered at Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater in New York in 2005, and has since been performed for thousands of people in venues ranging from living rooms, schools, bars and theaters around the country.
Another solo on the program will be Morgan’s Selling Out, performed by Tiffanie Carson. Morgan originated the role when he premiered the work in 2011 at the Strathmore Music Center, two months before Carson joined the company. Despite the work originally being made for Morgan, the piece fits Carson’s physicality and style like a glove. She was cited as “absolutely ripping the solo to shreds” by dance critic Carmel Morgan, when she performed this work at American Dance Institute season two seasons ago. Her performance of Selling Out is not to be missed.
In anticipation of the March 2016 premiere of Pohaku at Dance Place, Morgan will present a short 6-minute preview excerpt of this evening length work. Pohaku is a dance theater piece bringing together storytelling, hula, modern dance, classical music, and projection design to explore compelling universal themes in the story of Hawaii’s native people, including land loss and fractured identity. The selected excerpt to be performed begins with a traditional kahiko (ancient) hula that interprets the first section of the Hawaiian Creation chant, the Kumulipo. The section develops further and explores the integration of the ancient hula with modern dance, a reflection of Morgan’s mixed ethnic background and artistic multiplicity.
Completing the first half of the program will be Morgan’s 2013 work Selective Sync. Originally commissioned by the American University Dance Program, the piece draws inspiration from a mundane yet frustrating experience Morgan had while trying to do some simple data entry on his computer. “No matter what I tried, the computer repeatedly prompted me to ‘selectively sync’ my files, despite the fact I wanted all the files to ‘sync’ ”, says Morgan. “Those words stuck with me, and soon that nagging digital prompt began conjuring up other imagery in my mind: humans and animals being prompted to select someone with whom to align themselves. Selective Sync was born out of that imagery, and became an exploration of how relationships are evolving in today’s digital age.”
The second half of the program will consist solely of Morgan’s 2014 work Inconstancy, a playful, poignant theatrical quartet that incorporates props and set pieces that evoke surreal images of suburban domesticity. With a charming original score by composer and violinist David Schulman that loops layers of violin, Inconstancy asks if one can ever really be satisfied with what one has. Is the greener grass actually greener? Only seen once in the metro DC area when the work premiered in 2014, Inconstancy invites laughter from its audiences, while striking an emotional chord about the struggles of intimacy and love.
“It’s always interesting to look back at one’s own work over a span of time,” says Morgan. “Assessing these first five years, I couldn’t be prouder of what CKM&A has been able to accomplish artistically as a dance company, educationally through our intensives and residencies, and even administratively as an organization - especially given all the challenges faced by dance makers today! This 5th Anniversary Concert will celebrate this young company’s short past, while looking excitedly toward the future.”
All performances will be followed by a brief reception in the lobby, allowing audiences an opportunity to get to know the artists of the company.
American Dance Institute
1570 E. Jefferson St.
Rockville, MD 20852
October 9 at 8pm
October 10 at 3pm
October 10 at 8pm
$30 General Admission
$15 Student price