Contemporary Motions, the resident professional dance company of Hope College, returns to the Holland area for its annual residency and performances at the Knickerbocker Theatre on Friday and Saturday, April 7-8, at 8 p.m.
Admission is $6 for regular adult admission, and
$4 for senior citizens, students and children under 12 years
of age. Tickets will be available at the door the evening
of the performances.
The company will present an intimate evening
performance featuring new surprises and some returning
favorites, according to Julio Enrique Rivera, the company's
founder and artistic director. "Last year's attendance was
a smashing success, and this year we are expecting an even
more enthusiastic response from the many fans we have gained
in our 10-year residency status," he said.
Rivera is a senior member of the Hope dance
faculty, and returns to the campus after successful tours
throughout Europe and the United States. Recently he
received a "Lifetime Achievement Award" from his hometown of
Moca, Puerto Rico, and was honored as a "Distinguished
Artist" by Ballet Concierto de Puerto Rico.
Rivera notes that he is excited to present his
Contemporary Motions dance company to the area once again.
"Contemporary Motions celebrates 15 years," he
said. "The company is stronger than ever. We expect to
continue contributing to the arts at Hope College, the
Holland and surrounding communities through our annual
"The residency performances offer many new
variables coming together toward presenting another exciting
evening of dance sprinkled with the magic Contemporary
Motions is well known to deliver," Rivera said. "Come share
our varied visions of dance, and then go home with a
wonderful feeling of having being transported to wondrous
This season the company will present a world
premiere of a work created at Hope. Rivera noted that the
duet, titled "Ebony Waters," has strong primal overtones and
deals with the rising/birth of male and female forces.
The company will also premiere the work "Muse Di
Marmo," created last year for the students of Dance 25. The
work is presently part of the repertory of Ballet Concierto
de Puerto Rico, the national classical company, and will
tour to Taiwan, Beijing, Europe, and North, South and
Central America. The work was presented as part of the
"Festival of Choreographers" in Puerto Rico in October of
1999. According to Rivera, the festival is highly
recognized and organized to celebrate Caribbean
choreographers that have made a mark in the international
Joining Rivera this season are: Erica Lynn
Nelson, Ana Ladas (Nono), Vraja Keilman and Jennifer
Erica Lynn Nelson, who made her debut with
Contemporary Motions at last year's residency performances,
returns after a year of dance in New York City. Originally
from Wisconsin, she graduated from the University of
Wisconsin with degrees in history and dance. She currently
makes New York City her home, freelancing with various other
dance companies when she is not dancing with Contemporary
Ana Ladas (Nono) has been granted a special
apprenticeship with Contemporary Motions from the Hogeschool
voor de Kunsten Arnhem in the Netherlands, where she is a
pre-professional student. Like Rivera, she has studied
psychology and dance. Last fall she worked with him in a
two-month technique/repertory project when he returned to
teach at the school in Arnhem. During the project, Rivera
took a special interest in her work and suggested the idea
of continuing to work closely under his tutelage.
Vraja Keilman, also from the Netherlands, has been
dancing since her early years. She has also been granted
special permission from her studies to join Rivera and his
troop for this season's performances. Vraja has studied
with him in Amsterdam at the Amsterdam Theater School, where
she is currently an honors student, and the Amsterdam Dance
Jennifer Spalding, a 1999 Hope graduate, returns
for a special appearance with Contemporary Motions. She
will recreate her role in "Muse Di Marmo," which she
performed during the Dance 25 performances in March of 1999.
She is currently teaching jazz, modern and creative dance at
the Precision Dance Academy in Brighton.