PRESS RELEASE

    

Lula Washington Dance Theatre Makes Wallis Debut With Celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Internationally recognized for its unique blend of African, Afro-Caribbean, modern, street dance and jazz techniques, the Lula Washington Dance Theatre (LWDT) provides brilliant depictions of African-American experiences, past and present. Now the company-founded in 1980 and considered one of the premier African-American arts institutions on the West Coast-makes its Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts debut featuring three different programs that celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. over the course of three evenings in the Bram Goldsmith Theater on January 11 – 13, 2018.

Lula Washington has been generating art from the inner city of South Los Angeles for more than 38 years,” said Paul Crewes, the organization’s Artistic Director. “Her dynamic aesthetic and social conscious have been a catalyst for the important work she creates. We are proud to support this amazing local company. Each performance night at The Wallis will be different and show the range of her vital work. Art can change lives as Lula has repeatedly proved.”

The three programs were curated to show the range and breadth of the company’s 38 years of programming and the many voices that have influenced LWDT since its formation. On Thursday, January 11, Program A: African-American Male Voices features four works by male choreographers, including Donald Byrd and a world premiere by Anthony Burrell (known for Beyonce’s Super Bowl 50 halftime show and “The Formation World Tour”).

On Friday, January 12, Program B: Dance, Jazz & Social Meaning explores themes around social justice, humanism and spiritualty. The night is anchored by works influenced by Dr. King, including The Movement, which recalls the civil rights struggles of Dr. King and Rosa Parks, as well as The Little Rock Nine, which is a tribute to the nine African-American students who integrated Central High School on September 25, 1957. The complete work The Little Rock Nine by Lula Washington was commissioned by the University of Central Arkansas at Conway for the 50th anniversary of the Little Rock Nine.

On Saturday, January 13, Program C: Movement For The Soul Of It reflects on the history of the company and revisits popular works choreographed by Lula Washington and her daughter Tamica Washington-Miller, including Open Your Eyes (2016), The Message (2017) and an encore performance of The Little Rock Nine & The Movement (2017) choreographed by Lula Washington, as well as Snowy Day (2016), inspired by a book by famed writer Ezra Jack Keats and choreographed by Tamica Washington-Miller.

Single tickets are now available for $45 – $125. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit TheWallis.org/Lula, call 310.746.4000, or stop by in person at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts Ticket Services located at 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90210. Ticket prices subject to change.

The Wallis also offers three different options to subscribe to the 2017/18 season: the Premium Subscription Series; the Design-Your-Own option; and the new 3-show Flex Pass for $99, created especially for busy young professionals-39 and younger-giving the most flexibility to join The Wallis family of subscribers. Learn more at TheWallis.org/Subscribe.

About the Programs:
(subject to change)

PROGRAM A: African-American Male Voices
Temporary Spaces (choreographed by Anthony Burrell)
Love Is … (choreographed by Christopher Huggins)
Communion (choreographed by Donald Byrd)
The Movement (Excerpt) (choreographed by Lula Washington)
Reign (choreographed by Rennie Harris)

PROGRAM B: Dance, Jazz & Social Meaning
Little Rock Nine & The Movement (choreographed by Lula Washington)
There is Always Tomorrow (choreographed by Tamica Washington-Miller)
Global Village (choreographed by Lula Washington)
Search for Humanism (choreographed by Lula Washington)
We Wore the Mask (choreographed by Lula Washington)

PROGRAM C: Movement For The Soul Of It
Little Rock Nine & The Movement (choreographed by Lula Washington)
Snowy Day (choreographed by Tamica Washington-Miller)
Reign (choreographed by Rennie Harris)
The Message (choreographed by Lula Washington)
Open Your Eyes (choreographed by Lula Washington)

About Lula Washington Dance Theatre:
The Lula Washington Dance Theatre (LWDT) is a Los Angeles-based repertoire dance ensemble that performs innovative and provocative choreography by Lula Washington. The Company tours internationally and has been received with acclaim and admiration. Lula Washington has steadfastly focused on using dance to explore social and humanitarian issues, including aspects of African-American history and culture.

LWDT was founded in 1980 by Lula and Erwin Washington in the inner city area of South Los Angeles, California. Since then, LWDT has risen to become one of the most admired African-American contemporary dance companies in the West – known for powerful, high-energy dancing, unique choreography, and exceptional educational residencies.

The Company is composed of young, athletic dancers, many of whom were groomed in Lula Washington‘s inner city dance studio. While Lula Washington encourages her dancers to be excellent performers, she also emphasizes the importance of being leaders in their communities.

LWDT’s repertoire unveils honesty, integrity, and creativity of unparalleled power – with Lula Washington as the main choreographer and “voice” of LWDT.

Lula Washington augments her choreography with dances by master artists Donald McKayle; Katherine Dunham; Donald Byrd (“The Color Purple”); Louis Johnson (“The Wiz”); Christopher Huggins; and local icon, Rudy Perez. The Company also performs works by talented, emerging choreographers such as Tamica Washington-Miller, Associate Director of LWDT.

LWDT has performed at such venues as Lincoln Center Out of Doors; the Joyce Theatre; the New Jersey Performing Arts Center; Jacob’s Pillow; the Ordway Theater in Minneapolis; the Pioneer Center in Reno, Nevada; the John F. Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.; and at theaters in Germany, Spain, Mexico and St. Croix, Virgin Islands. In addition to touring, LWDT dances in scores of schools each year. Lula Washington choreographed James Cameron‘s AVATAR and Disney’s The Little Mermaid movie.

For the complete listing of all Dance @ The Wallis programs visit TheWallis.org/Dance.

About the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts:
Since opening its doors in October 2013, The Wallis has produced or presented more than 150 dance, theatre, opera, classical music and family programs to an ever-expanding audience. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Paul Crewes and Managing Director Rachel Fine, The Wallis brings audiences world-class theater, dance and music, performed by many of the world’s most talented and sought-after artists. Featuring eclectic programming that mirrors the diverse landscape of Los Angeles and its notability as the entertainment capital of the world, The Wallis offers original and revered works from across the U.S. and around the globe.

The mission of The Wallis is to create, present and celebrate unique performing arts events and educational programs that reflect the rich cultural diversity of our community. Nominated for 47 Ovation Awards, four L.A. Drama Critic’s Circle Awards and the recipient of six architectural awards, The Wallis is a breathtaking 70,000-square-foot venue that celebrates the classic and the modern and was designed by Zoltan E. Pali, FAIA of Studio Pali Fekete architects. The building features the restored, original 1933 Beverly Hills Post Office (on the National Register of Historic Places) that serves as the theater’s dramatic yet welcoming lobby, and houses the 150-seat Lovelace Studio Theater, GRoW at The Wallis: A Space for Arts Education (a gift of Gregory Annenberg Weingarten and Family and the Annenberg Foundation) and the contemporary 500-seat, state-of-the-art Bram Goldsmith Theater. Together, these structures embrace the city’s history and its future, creating a performing arts destination for L.A.-area visitors and residents alike.

The Official Sponsors of The Wallis’ 2017/18 Season include: Delta Air Lines (Official Airline Sponsor), Montage Beverly Hills (Preferred Hotel) and Mercedes-Benz of Beverly Hills (Official Automotive Sponsor).

For more information about The Wallis, please visit: TheWallis.org.

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Tickets:
Single tickets: $45 – $125 (prices subject to change)
Online – TheWallis.org/Lula
By Phone – 310.746.4000
Box Office – Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts Ticket Services
9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA, 90210

 

Press Contacts:

Sarah Jarvis, The Wallis Communications Manager

310.246.3800| sjarvis@thewallis.org

Gary W. Murphy, The Wallis Public Relations Consultant

310.914.0178 | gmurphypr@gmail.com