The Hope College Great Performance Series will host the world-class dance troupe Cleo Parker Robinson Dance on Thursday-Friday, Oct. 23-24, at 8 p.m. at the Knickerbocker Theatre.

Seeing themselves as cultural ambassadors to the world, the members of Cleo Parker Robinson Dance have been creating and performing cross cultural dance experiences rooted in African-American traditions for more than 30 years.


"Their enthusiasm showed, clearly leaving gasping audience members amazed by their twists and torso action," the "University Times, Los Angeles" has said.


Based in Denver, the ensemble has participated in major festivals and tours throughout the world, and "The New Yorker" magazine recently previewed the group's upcoming appearance at the Joyce Theatre by saying "the integrated ensemble displays a generous, robust version of modern dance in the African-American tradition."


The company also hosts an Annual International Summer Dance Institute which teaches everyone from children to adults a variety of dance traditions. The event includes classes led by visiting dancers and choreographers.


Known also for outstanding costumes and staging, the dance troupe creates a visual treat for audience members. The ensemble's diverse repertoire includes works by Cleo Parker Robinson, the founder and current leading force of the company, as well as renowned choreographers such as Donald Byrd, Talley Beatty, Katherine Dunham, and Donald McKayle.


The dances and dancers strive to create an emotional and physical experience while on stage.


"Together, they communicated a weary angry passion that one might have thought to be incommunicable," reviewed "The New York Times."


While in Holland, the dance company will lead Hope dance students in several master classes, and will also meet with Encounter with the Arts students.


Additional information on Cleo Parker Robinson Dance may be obtained from the company's website or through the Great Performance Series website


Tickets for the performances will be on sale to the public on Friday, Oct. 17, and Monday-Friday, Oct. 20-24, at the theatre lobby box office in the DeWitt Center, and will cost $14 for regular admission, $12 for senior citizens, and $5 for children 18 and under. The box office will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and can be called at (616) 395-7890.


Great Performance Series dance performances typically sell out, so early reservation of seats is encouraged.

The Knickerbocker Theatre is located at 86 East 8th Street in downtown Holland. The DeWitt Center is located on Columbia Avenue at 12th Street.