Hedwig Dances, the Chicago-based contemporary dance company, has assembled an exceptional 39th fall season featuring three world premieres to be performed November 3 and 4 at 7:30 pm at the Ruth Page Center for the Arts:
- K@02 by Hedwig Dances’ artistic associate Rigo Saura.
- Pat & Dianna (working title), an original work by Chicago-based guest choreographer Noelle Kayser.
- Name To be Determined by Jenna Pollack, another Chicago-based choreographer.
Each of the three dances in the concert will merge dance with a visual environment to provide evocative and new manifestations of Hedwig Dances artistic oeuvre. Artistic Associate Rigo Saura’s K@02 builds upon Rigo’s previous works which responded to recent transformative world events in 2019-2020. As a sequel to KAOS (2020), K@02 explores the journey of recovery in a transhuman landscape immersed in mythology and human chaos, evolving through flesh, connection with others, and an internal expression of self.
Debut works by guest choreographers Noelle Kayser and Jenna Pollack respond to Hedwig Dances’ invitation to fuse dance with a visual environment, specifically with ‘things,’ or objects, to explore the transformation of the object with the moving body. Kayser’s new creation Pat & Dianna (working title) will explore consumerism as armor against vulnerability — relying on material possessions for emotional support, construction of identity, and pseudo interpersonal connection. Pollack’s untitled work explores questions about society’s accountability for, and to, the built environment. She collaborates with mechanical engineer Dr. Benjamin Lindner, who has created a set of specially constructed boxes for this new work.
Hedwig Dances’ fall concert will be staged in the theater at the Ruth Page Center, 1016 N. Dearborn, Chicago, IL. Evening shows take place on November 3 and 4 at 7:30 pm. A post show reception with the artists will follow the opening night show. After Saturday’s performance an on-stage discussion with the artists will take place, moderated by Dr. Melissa Blanco Borelli. Dr. Borelli is a critical dance studies scholar, choreographer, and cultural critic. She is an Associate Professor of Theatre and the Director of the Dance Program at Northwestern University. She has been on faculty at MIT, University of Surrey (UK), Royal Holloway, University of London (UK) and the University of Maryland, College Park. There is no charge for this discussion. Ticket prices range from $20 to $55 and will be available for purchase August 28 at HedwigDances.com.
ABOUT THE CHOREOGRAPHERS
Rigo Saura graduated from the National School of Modern and Contemporary Dance in Havana, Cuba. Saura is a former dancer of Danza Contemporánea of Cuba, a soloist dancer of the classical cast in the National Ballet of Ecuador, resident choreographer in Ecuador’s Urban Ballet, and Composition Master in the Metropolitan School of Art, Ecuador. Since moving to Chicago, he has been a part of Ruth Page Center of the Arts and guest artist/instructor for the Professional Program at The Hubbard Street Dance Company, Chicago DanceWorks, Thodos Dances, Visceral Dance Chicago, Visceral Dance Center, Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, The Latin School Dance Program, Common Dance Conservatory, Chicago DanceCrash Concert Dance Inc. and Ruth Page Civic Ballet. Currently, he is a dancer, teacher, resident choreographer and Artistic Associate at Hedwig Dances. He was a winner of L.A. Contemporary Choreography Lab, Chicago DanceMakers Forum Production Residency at Ruth Page Center of the Art, served as a guest choreographer for Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre, Dance in the Parks, Links Hall Co-Mission Artists 2022, and was just named Chicago Dancemakers Forum Partner Artist in Residence at High Concept Labs 2023.
Noelle Kayser is an Atlanta-raised, Chicago-based choreographer, performer, and educator. Choreographic commissions include Hedwig Dances, DanceWorks Chicago, Ballare Carmel, SALT Dance LINK Choreography Festival, Visceral Dance Chicago, Open Space Dance, Chicago Dance Crash, Dance in the Parks, Boykin Dance Project, COMMON Conservatory, Cerqua Rivera Dance Theater, Kit Modus, and Moonwater Dance Project. As a dancer, Noelle has performed with, among others, Lyric Opera, PARA.MAR Dance Theatre, LED Boise, Open Space Dance, NW Dance Project, Visceral Dance Chicago, The Cambrians, Fly on a Wall, gloATL, and Luna Negra Dance Theater. Noelle has taught various classes, workshops, and intensives for PARA.MAR Dance Theatre, NW Dance Project, Visceral Dance Chicago, and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago among others. Noelle was the founding rehearsal director and administrator for PARA.MAR Dance Theatre (2022 Dance Magazine Top 25 to Watch) under the artistic direction of the founder Stephanie Martinez. Noelle has narrated 16 audiobooks for Listen Up Productions / Audible.com, appeared in industrial advertising for Grey Television, Kitchenaid, and Whirlpool, and performed in theater productions with The Alliance Theater, The Chicago Shakespeare Theater, 7 Stages, Theater for the Stars, and Scrap Theater Group.
Jenna Pollack (she/her), MUPP, MA is a community-engaged researcher, dance professional, cultural organizer, urban planner, and educator. Recently she was an Arts Envoy to the U.S. Embassy of Colombia, a Bessie Schonberg resident artist at The Yard, Boston Center for the Arts Dancemaker Resident, and a finalist for the Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellowship for Choreography. Jenna’s collaborative teams have been commissioned by the Olin College of Engineering, New Movement Collaborative, Hubbard Street Professional Program, and The National Parks Service. Individually, she has choreographed for Bridge Repertory Theater, InDance Barcelona, Theater Felina-Areal Mannheim, Urbanity Dance Company, for various college dance and theater programs, and in NYC focused on immersive performance with The Center for Innovation in the Arts at Juilliard and Dau al Set Productions. Additionally, she served as The Davis Sisters’ dramaturg and rehearsal director. From 2017 – 2021 Jenna was an Assistant Professor of Dance at the Boston Conservatory at Berklee, Salem State University, and the Boston Ballet. jennapollack.com