Sarasota Contemporary Dance Season Reaches for New Heights

Come fall, SCD will open a new season, and have a new studio home.

By Kay Kipling August 2, 2017

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Sarasota Contemporary Dance members

Image: Cliff Roles


As Sarasota Contemporary Dance heads into its 12th season in October, the company is looking forward to more than just its roster of performances. SCD will also be moving into its new 3,000-square-foot home in the Rosemary District at Boulevard of the Arts and Central Avenue, where for the first time since its founding it will have a permanent studio, office and storage space.

Artistic director Leymis Bolaños Wilmott says she’s excited about the move to the new space, which will include sound equipment, theatrical lighting and a sprung floor for dancers to rehearse in the proper state-of-the-art environment. (Performances before audiences will continue to take place at the Jane B. Cook Theatre at FSU Center for the Performing Arts.) The Rosemary Square spot will also offer room for set, costume and prop storage and artist locker rooms as well as administrative offices.

Meanwhile, on the artistic side, the company continues to try some new and different approaches to its shows. For the season’s first performances, Oct. 12-15, they welcome renowned harpist (and Sarasota resident) Ann Hobson Pilot and violinist Tai Murray for a collaborative performance set to the music of composer Astor Pantaleon Piazzolla. "SCD + Piazzolla" is not a tango dance show, according to Bolaños Wilmott, but rather one “inspired by the richness of one of the greatest tango composers’ music,” in this case with all of it intriguingly arranged for harp.

That leadoff performance is followed by the company’s annual “Voices of Sarasota Contemporary Dance” offering, Nov. 30-Dec. 3, which allows four emerging choreographers (selected by adjudication from SCD’s recent summer intensive program) to expand and set their work for the mainstage. It’s a showcase for original, innovative choreography.

“Dance Makers,” Jan. 25-28, 2018, is the season’s main event, featuring new works by acclaimed contemporary choreographers Millicent Johnnie, Lucy Bowen McCauley, Rosanna Tavarez and Crystal Edwards. The program will also feature one solo work dating from the 1920s, created by modern dance pioneer Ted Shawn and restaged by historical modern dance specialist Jack Clark. SCD presented a group work from the 1920s featuring five female dancers last season, and the look back serves to provide something of a through line for the history of modern dance.

The 2017-18 season will wind up with “Evolving/Revolving” May 10-13, made up of diverse new pieces by past company collaborators Anamaria Diamant, Sandra Portal-Andreu, Doug Gillespie, Rachel Inman and Kristin O’Neal.

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Rick Levine in a previous SCD production

Image: Cliff Roles


For season subscriptions or single tickets (becoming available this week), call (941) 359-0099 or visit sarasotacontemporary

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