Clef Notes Chicagoland Journal for the Arts
Celebrity choreographer Liz Imperio (photo courtesy of Liz Imperio).
Giordano Dance Chicago (GDC) will debuts Lost in this World, a world premiere by Liz Imperio, hailed as choreographer to the stars, when the company presents their spring engagement at the Harris Theater for Music and Dance Friday, March 31 and Saturday, April 1 at 7:30 p.m. The program will also feature former GDC dancer and River North Dance Chicago artistic director Frank Chaves’ restaging of Grusin Suite, a work that had its birth at GDC.
“Many Chicagoans know Frank’s Grusin Suite as a four-movement work that was part of River North Dance Chicago’s repertoire, but it was originally choreographed and debuted on the Skyline Stage as a three-movement work for our Jazz Dance World Festival in 1993. I’m very excited to see Frank, a former GDC dancer, give new life to this piece of our history,” says Nan Giordano, GDC artistic director.
From 1993-2015, the Cuban-born Chaves, a 2014 Chicago Tribune “Chicagoan of the Year,” served as artistic director for River North Dance Chicago (RNDC) curating a repertoire of works by the most respected dance makers, and creating 25 works for RNDC. Other choreographic credits include Finland’s Pori Dance Company, the National Choreographers Initiative and theatrical commissions for Steppenwolf Theatre Company and the Cleveland Playhouse. His performance credits include New York’s Ballet Hispanico, Giordano Dance Chicago and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago.
“I’m also thrilled to welcome back Liz Imperio, who choreographed ‘La Belleza de Cuba,’ a full-bodied tribute to the jazz of Cuba’s streets and nightclubs, for our 50th Anniversary,” noted Giordano, “Imperio, too, represents our legacy, having initially connected to my father, Gus, whom she has described as the ‘iconic godfather of jazz dance,’ at a dance convention many years ago. Given her appreciation of our history and sense of heart, I can’t wait to share her newest full company work with our audiences this spring.”
Liz Imperio, a proud Cuban-American and recipient of the Industry Dance Award’s 2016 role model award, has established herself as a major director and choreographer in the entertainment industry. Her credits include the staging and choreography for Jennifer Lopez’s world tour Dance Again and directing/choreographing of three of Gloria Estefan’s world concert tours. Imperio also recently instigated a next level, career enhancement program called “Breaking Barriers."
Additional works on the program for GDC’s spring Harris engagement include Peter Chu’s 2016 work Divided Against, which explores the divergent forces within us and GDC audience favorite Sneaky Pete (2015) by Brock Clawson, drawing upon his love of theater to create a deliciously intriguing work with stunning touch of film noir.
For tickets or for more information, call 312.922.1332 or visit harristheaterchicago.org.