Jacob’s Pillow Director to Moderate Wendy Whelan Event at Guggenheim

Wendy Whelan/Restless Creature (photo Nisian Hughes)

Wendy Whelan/Restless Creature (photo Nisian Hughes)

(BECKET, Mass.) – Jacob’s Pillow executive and artistic director Ella Baff will moderate a panel discussion and performance featuring New York City Ballet star Wendy Whelan on Sunday, April 14, 2013, at 3pm, at New York City’s Guggenheim Museum. As part of the event on April 14-15, Whelan will perform a solo created by Shen Wei and excerpts from the new project Restless Creature, which will premiere at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in August. The presentation, which is sold out, will be streamed live at 3pm EST at www.ustream.tv/worksandprocess. Viewers may also follow the conversation on Twitter hosted by Pointe magazine blogger Emily Katz with @emdanceballet @WorksandProcess and #WPlive.

The event is part of the Works & Process at the Guggenheim series exploring the creative process of dance through performance and conversation. The preview will include excerpts from a duet with choreographer Joshua Beamish and excerpts from a duet with choreographer Brian Brooks. Baff will moderate discussions with Whelan and the four choreographers of Restless Creature: Kyle Abraham, Joshua Beamish, Brian Brooks, and Alejandro Cerrudo, offering an inside perspective on the choreographic process of the work, which challenges Whelan to work within a variety of artists’ visions while finding ways to amplify her own vivid individuality.

Wendy Whelan/Restless Creature (photo Nisian Hughes)

Wendy Whelan/Restless Creature (photo Nisian Hughes)

”We are delighted to co-commission and present the world premiere of Wendy Whelan’s Restless Creature and participate in the distinguished and enlightening Works & Process series,” says Baff. “The Pillow regularly supports projects from inception to presentation, and working with the great Wendy and these particular choreographers, all of whom have variously performed or created work at Jacob’s Pillow, continues to be especially gratifying. The Pillow and Works & Process at the Guggenheim share a commitment to inviting audiences into the inner workings of how and why artists create.”

The full world premiere of Wendy Whelan’s Restless Creature will take place in the Ted Shawn Theatre at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, August 14-18. Tickets for the Pillow world premiere go on sale April 8 online at Jacob’s Pillow and 413.243.0745.


About Restless Creature:


Wendy Whelan embarks on a new dance adventure and joins forces with four of today’s top male choreographers in Restless Creature. Together with her collaborators, she will perform a vibrant suite of four contemporary duets each with its own distinct style and artistry, created by and danced with Kyle Abraham, Joshua Beamish, Brian Brooks, and Alejandro Cerrudo. Duets by Abraham, Beamish, and Cerrudo will premiere at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, August 14-18.

Wendy Whelan has danced with New York City Ballet for more than 25 years and is hailed as “America’s greatest contemporary ballerina” by Claudia La Rocco of The New York Times. She has mastered repertory that includes beloved classics such as Swan Lake, Balanchine’s neo-classical pieces, and contemporary works by some of the world’s greatest choreographers. Whelan has also performed as a guest artist with the Royal Ballet and the Mariinsky Ballet and has toured extensively throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. She made her Jacob’s Pillow debut in 1986 as a participant in The Choreography Project with Dancers from The New York City Ballet and returned as a member of the same group the following year. She last danced at the Pillow in 2004, with Peter Boal and Company, performing William Forsythe’s Herman Schmerman with Boal and appearing in Christopher Wheeldon’s Mesmerics with Boal and Benjamin Millepied.

Kyle Abraham is a dancer, choreographer, Artistic Director of Abraham.in.Motion (A.I.M.), and recipient of the 2012 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award. He was honored with a 2010 Bessie Award and a Princess Grace Award for Choreography, and named one of Dance Magazine’s “25 to Watch.” His work first appeared at Jacob’s Pillow in 2009 as part of the outdoor Inside/Out series. A.I.M. performed at Jacob’s Pillow in 2010 and in an exclusive mixed bill with Camille A. Brown and Dancers in 2011. A.I.M. will also perform in this summer’s Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival from August 21-25.

Brian Brooks is the Artistic Director of Brian Brooks Moving Company, founded in 2002, which has toured throughout the United States, South Korea, and Europe. A well-known performer and choreographer, Brooks also served on faculty for Princeton University, Rutgers University, Barnard College, and the University of Maryland, among others. Brian Brooks Moving Company will perform in this summer’s Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival from July 10-14. Brian Brooks’s Restless Creature duet, sub-titled Fall Falls, premiered last summer. The New York Times praised that “Mr. Brooks’s poetic talent is evident throughout” the duet.

Joshua Beamish, originally from Kelowna, British Columbia, is the Artistic Director of MOVE: the company, a contemporary dance ensemble based in Vancouver. Already a distinguished young choreographer, his company has performed at the International Ballet Festival in Miami, the Quinzenade Danca Almada Festival in Portugal, the WORLD EXPO in Shanghai, and the Bangkok International Festival for Dance. In 2012, Joshua Beamish participated in The Men Dancers: From the Horse’s Mouth, created in honor of the Pillow’s 80th Anniversary Season. From April 22-27, Beamish will be participating in a Creative Development Residency at Jacob’s Pillow to develop and rehearse new dance repertory.

Alejandro Cerrudo began his training in Madrid before dancing with a number of prestigious international companies including Victor Ullate Ballet, Stuttgart Ballet, Nederlands Dans Theater 2, and, since 2005, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. In 2009, he became Hubbard Street’s first resident choreographer and his works have been performed throughout the United States, Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, Australia, and at Jacob’s Pillow in both 2007 and 2010.





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