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Welcome to Luna Negra Dance Theater's Monthly E-Newsletter!

Center Stage: Fall Season Reviewed in Dance Magazine
In the Wings: Meet Art Velasquez
On Stage: An evening of all women choreographers

November 2008

Check out Luna Blog

Save the Date: Next Performances

Center Stage: Fall Season Reviewed in Dance Magazine
Photo by Cheryl Mann, featuring Kirsten Shelton and Ricardo J. Garcia

Photo by Cheryl Mann, featuring Kirsten Shelton and Ricardo J. Garcia

Luna Negra Dance Theater's acclaimed Fall Season was also reviewed by Dance Magazine critic Lynn Colburn Shapiro. 

Latin rhythms, balletic virtuosity, and choreographic depth combined in Luna Negra Dance Theater's 10th-anniversary season opener, "Ciclos," a provocative program that paid homage to the Latino heritage. From the percussive AviMar (a premiere by Francisco Avińa), to artistic director Eduardo Vilaro's intensely emotional Deshár Alhát (also a premiere), to the lyrical arcs of José Limón's 1956 There Is a Time, the 12 dancers performed with polish and artistic authority.

Read more

In the Wings: Meet Art Velasquez

Luna Negra Dance Theater is fortunate to benefit from the leadership of a diverse and exceptional group of individuals who serve on our Board of Directors. Currently, Luna Negra has 18 active members. Art Velasquez, president and CEO of Baja Foods, is the most recent addition to our Board of Directors, joining in July of 2008.

Velasquez was brought up in a family with a strong tradition in philanthropy. His grandfather, who was born in Mexico and immigrated to the United States when he was 10 years old, is a strong believer in the power of education and is committed to helping his community through his church. He has served on over 20 boards throughout his life. Following his legacy Art Velasquez (the third) serves on the board of Mercy Home for Boys and Girls, a catholic organization helping children in need, Cristo Rey, which provides college preparatory education for the immigrant families of Chicago's near southwest side, and most recently Luna Negra Dance Theater.

Says Velasquez, "I usually serve on boards that support children's education. When I was invited to join the Board of Luna Negra Dance Theater, I felt the need to get out of my comfort zone and get involved in an arts organization which mission, on top of performing works by Latino choreographers, includes strong education and outreach programs that in fact further my commitment to children's education in our community."

Join Art Velasquez in supporting Luna Negra Dance Theater. CONTRIBUTE NOW!

On Stage: An evening of all women choreographers
Photo by Kristie Kahns, featuring Vanessa Valecillos
Photo by Kristie Kahns, featuring Vanessa Valecillos

Spring 2009 Season
Saturday, March 28 at 8:00pm

Harris Theater, in Millennium Park
205 East Randolph Drive
Tickets $25-55. Call 312-334-7777 or visit

Buy Tickets

Luna Negra Dance Theater brings an unprecedented program of all female choreographers, showcasing the raw power of Latina voices in dance.

The program features a new work by Columbian choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, and audience favorites Sugar in the Raw (Azucar Cruda) by Michelle Manzanales and Eterno Despertar by Maray Gutierrez.

445 West Erie Street, Suite 101
Chicago, IL 60654


Rachel Howard

Featuring Uliana Lopatkina, Diana Vishneva, Igor Zelensky and Leonid Sarafanov
see complete story on Dance 4 America.

New York City Ballet Announces 2008 Winter Repertory Season and Annual Holiday
Engagement of George Balanchine's The Nutcracker™

Eight-Week Winter Season to Feature 13 Distinct Programs Showcasing 40 Different Ballets

Highlights Include World Premiere Ballets by Christopher Wheeldon and Mauro Bigonzetti,the Return of Peter Martins’ Full-Length Production of Romeo + Julietand Susan Stroman’s Double Feature,19 Works by George Balanchine Including Jewels and Prodigal Son, and Seven Works by Jerome Robbins Including The Concert and West Side Story Suite

The Season Will Also Include a Farewell Performancefor Principal Dancer Nikolaj Hübbe,
on Sunday, February 10




NDCA 60th Gala Flyer
1948 thru 2008

N D C A 6 0th gala

As you may have already heard, 2008 marks the 60th anniversary of the National Dance Council of America. On January 5th, 2008 we are kicking off this celebration year with a Gala event right where it all began in 1948 in New York City.

Mark your calendars and plan to attend a fun-filled weekend in New York City – January 4-6, 2008. Enjoy the City at one of the neatest times of year – shopping on 5th Avenue, Ice Skating in Rockefeller Center, Dining in some of the best restaurants in the world, Carriage Rides in Central Park and great theatre!! Top all of that off with the 60th Gala Celebration and it’s a weekend not to be missed!

Following two days of the NDCA bi-annual meeting, we will begin the day on Saturday, January 5th with the Organizers Meeting from 9-11am. All NDCA Organizers are invited to attend.

Noon to 4pm will be the United States Dance Sport Congress featuring lectures/workshops from our top couples and coaches. This is FREE to everyone.

The Gala Evening will commence at 6pm with cocktails and dinner at 7pm. Details on the dinner (and also hotel information) will be forthcoming.

Following the dinner will begin an evening to remember, featuring –

. Shows by our top couples
. Scholarships in all categories – Pro/Am, Amateur, Junior,
Youth, Rising Star Professional, Open Professional
. United States Dance Sport Hall of Fame Awards
. Special Awards and Acknowledgements
. Special Awards to our television stars
. Slide Show
. Dancing with your favorite partner

The NDCA is one of the oldest organizations of its kind in the world and we are proud to reach this milestone, but we know that we would not exist without you and the countless many who have contributed and supported this organization over the last 6o years.

We look forward to sharing past memories, present successes and future goals with all of you. We hope you will join us to unite and celebrate our wonderful world of dance in the United States.

For more information or group reservations, please contact Jackie Rogers at or Lori Gay at

P.S. If you have any dance pictures or videos from the past (or present), please mail them to Jackie Rogers, 1708 The Hideout, Lake Ariel, PA 18436. We are gathering pictures and videos of our past and present champions in all categories for the Gala and also the NDCA archives. All pictures and videos will be returned.
(back to List of Articles)

Dancers or Audition Calls:
Salsa Wild of The Falcon and Doves Dance Troupe . The audition moto of this dance troupe is Experience helpful, but note necessary, in as much as each member is auditioned for which assigned division - Amateur - Pro Amateur - Professional. A full cultural affirmative developmental  program

Antojito (Sampling): Preview of New Work
Join us at the Joffrey Ballet Studios for a sneak preview of
CUGAT! , Tango Vitrola and a chance to discuss with the artists
Thursday, October 4 at 6:45pm - FREE

Photo by Audia, featuring Vanessa Valecillos and Ricardo J. Garcia.

Joffrey Ballet Studios

17 North State St.
19th Floor

Chicago, IL 60610

Space is Limited! RSVP Required.
Entrance to the building is by invitation only.
Call Kirsten at
by Oct 3rd to RSVP.

CUGAT!, a new work by Eduardo Vilaro is an homage to Mambo king Xavier Cugat, one of the greatest Latin musician of all time. It is set to mambo tunes made famous by Cugat, which will be performed live by the Angel Meléndez & The 911 Mambo Orchestra on October 19 and 20 at the Harris Theater. You will also see excerpts of Tango Vitrola by Alejandro Cervera, set to early recordings of tango music from the 1920's.


Don't miss this fiery and passionate evening of contemporary dance fused with
Friday, October 19 at 8:00 pm
Saturday, October 20 at 8:00 pm
Tickets $25-55

Harris Theater for Music and Dance
Learn more about the performance

Luna Negra Dance Theater takes a fresh look at Latin dance with works that explore and deconstruct Latin dance movements into innovative and original contemporary works.

Lighting Sponsor

Dance is a live in Ithaca.





Passioné: Full Radius Dance in Concert

Atlanta’s groundbreaking dance company in performance December 1 & 2 at 7Stages

The physically-integrated (dancers with and without disabilities) nonprofit modern dance company Full Radius Dance announces Passioné: Full Radius Dance in concert, to be held December 1 and 2 at 7Stages Theatre.

This concert offers Atlanta audiences the opportunity to see the groundbreaking and pioneering work of Full Radius Dance. The program includes the revivals of “Crawl/Climb”, “Song of Bernadette” and “Passione”. Choreographed by Artistic Director Douglas Scott, “Passione” is inspired by the depth of feeling and majestic sense of theatre that is found in grand opera, and received its premiere as part of Dance Synergy, a national tour celebrating 25 years of physically integrated dance in America. Also on the program is the premiere of “Send Me on My Way”, a quartet for four women, inspired by random encounters.

Tickets for the performances are $15.00 for Adults, $12.00 for Children 12 & under and Seniors 55 & over. Click for Reservations.

About Full Radius Dance:
Full Radius Dance is a modern dance company that presents mature, choreographically complex works celebrating technique and physicality. Additionally, the company has a desire to share the talents of dancers who have disabilities with the mainstream audience. The organization was initially founded by Douglas Scott in 1991 as a modern dance company called Dance Force, Inc. In 1993, a new focus developed when Scott began working with dancers with disabilities. In 1995, Scott and Ardath Prendergast founded E=motion, a company created with the specific intention of working with dancers with disabilities. In 1998, E=motion and Dance Force combined to create Full Radius Dance.


Luna Negra on the road...
This summer, Luna Negra dancers spent 2 weeks in New Orleans teaching dance to students age 11-18 in a nationally acclaimed program sponsored by the New Orleans Recreation Department (NORD) and the New Orleans Ballet Association (NOBA) Center for Dance. This was actually the second company visit to New Orleans. We were there for 3 weeks last year and ended the program shortly before Katrina hit.

This year, therefore, the residency was especially meaningful. Many of the students had been living in a state of constant flux and uncertainty, moving from house to house or living in very precarious conditions. "The energy was different this year. You could feel that the kids had been living under difficult circumstances," says dancer Vanessa Valecillos "but I am hopeful that through the dance classes and the workshop we could give them an outlet to express their feelings of anger, sadness and hopelessness."

Ricardo Garcia, who taught modern dance classes notes: "The younger students were exited about the material given in class and in rehearsals. Some had real potential to go further with the art form.  However, others, mainly teenagers, were a bit rebellious and needed to learn discipline and how to achieve goals. It was a challenge and I learned a lot from it.  I think the fact that we went to New Orleans, gave lessons, performed and interacted with this community was very important.  NOBA is one of the few organizations in the United States dedicated to present only dance and I feel our contribution was very important to its survival."

Dance at the Sabin Magnet School

Sabin Magnet School student prepares for a pirouette under the guidance of Luna Negra teacher.

In 2005, Luna Negra Dance Theater started a long-term residency at the Sabin Magnet School in Wicker Park, teaching dance to 60 first grade students, most of whom are Latino and African American.

See Additional story bi - line.


The 3th intl. Salsa Congress Munich (Germany)
3 – 5 November 2006

You can order the following offers now:
DVD of the 4th Intl. Salsafestival Hamburg 2006, 30 Euros
Specialprice valid for orders and pays before Sept, 10th

Dear Sir/Madam,

The 4th. International Salsafestival Hamburg was a huge success!
More than 2500 participants from about 46 different countries came to share
workshops, shows and great parties!
We thank you very much, because you were the reason for this success and without you we couldn´t have done it! We also really appreciate the support of those who believed in us and we like to thank our partners, which you will find on our homepage!

Because of renovation of the big hall, we had to change this year to alternative rooms. Next year you will find again the modernized big hall to which you are used to!
Many dancers enjoyed a lot of fantastic workshops. Unfortunately some of the teachers couldn´t come. Although we didn´t have any influence on the causes, we want to say sorry for that.
Between Frankie Martinez and his management (coly david from New York) were problems in coordinating his schedule. But we are proud and happy, that we found Franklin Diaz as substitute and like to thank him for his flexibility!
In the name of Alex da Silva we apologize: He was already at LAX Airport, when he had to cancel his flight, because his passport wasn’t valid anymore.
For further information he offers to contact him:
We were also surprised, when Francisco Vasquez called us, to tell us that he couldn´t fly, because as he is often in Europe he has no permission to fly to Europe again until autumn.
As a kind of compensation you will find the workshops, that he designed especially for the Salsafestival in Hamburg a video download on his website:

Alex and Francisco promised to be there again next year!

As compensation we offer the participants of the Salsafestival Hamburg 10% reduction on the ticket of the Munich Congress from the 3, to 5. of November 2006.

The 5th . International Salsafestival Hamburg will be from the 20th to the 22th of July 2007 in Hamburg!
All workshops and Parties will be in 1 location (CCH Congress Centrum Hamburg), on more than 3000 m˛, in fully air conditioned modernized big hall!
We want to organize the festival as good as possible and therefore we need your support!
Please tell us honestely what we can improve. We appreciate every wish and
suggestion and we really try to realise them!

We hope to meet you at again at the festival 2007 in Hamburg!

Best wishes!

Imad Production

National Dance Week April 21 to April 30, 2006
For Information Click on [ WebSite ]
If your city does not have one find out how you can start one!



Season Programs on PBS Great Performances in Dance.




Dance, Ithaca, Ithaca, Dance.
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