Urban Bush Women takes the stage of The Joyce Theater, May 8–13, transforming it with singular fierce beauty and defiant wit. For the company’s return to The Joyce, Urban Bush Women will present a mixed program featuring the restaging of Blondell Cummings’ seminal solo Chicken Soup, deemed an American Masterpiece by the National Endowment for the Arts; a hot ensemble piece by emerging choreographer Camille A. Brown; and Zollar’s own Bessie award-winning tribute to Pearl Primus, Walking With Pearl… Southern Diaries.
With a flash of the hand, the stomp of a foot, and the dart of an eye, Ragamala Music and Dance Theater, now through May 13 at the New Victory Theatre, builds bridges between ancient and modern cultures. The company performs a 2,500-year-old Indian dance form and uses it as a springboard for innovative choreography. Complex rhythmic patterns blend with expressive gestures as brilliantly costumed dancers break into percussive footwork, while their limbs transform into swimming fish, soaring birds and cascading waterfalls. Accompanied by classical Carnatic music, live Japanese taiko drums and modern a capella vocalizations, Ragamala spans culture and time in swirls of visual poetry.