NORTH ADAMS – Cultural partners Jacob’s Pillow Dance and MASS MoCA present New York City-based contemporary dance company ZviDance in a work-in-progress showing of On the Road, April 23 at 8 p.m. at the Hunter Center, 87 Marshall St.
Founded in 1991 by Artistic Director Zvi Gotheiner, ZviDance is a collaborative alliance of artists celebrating diversity by melding movement genres into works that refuse to be bound to specific thematic or aesthetic dogma.
Born and raised in a kibbutz in northern Israel, Zvi Gotheiner began his artistic career as a violinist with the Young Kibbutzim Orchestra, where he attained the rank of soloist and Concertmaster at age 15. He began dancing at 17, and soon after formed his first performance group. Gotheiner arrived in New York in 1978 on a dance scholarship from the America-Israel Cultural Foundation and danced with the Joyce Trisler Danscompany and Feld Ballets/NY and toured with Batsheva Dance Company. After directing Tamar Ramle and the Jerusalem Tamar Dance Companies in Israel and the Israeli Chamber Dance Company in New York, he founded ZviDance in 1991.
On the Road, inspired by American beatnik Jack Kerouac’s novel by the same title, is an evening-length, multimedia dance piece that contemplates the general upheaval of the 1960s and the Beat generation’s startling notions of social rebellion.
In On the Road, Gotheiner entwines the thrills of freedom, the sounds of jazz, and the perplexity of youthful American voices discovering their closeted and social selves. Set to an original score by frequent collaborator and composer Scott Killian, the soundscape is a commentary on Kerouac’s novel and an homage to the Beat poets. Couched in a mash-up of Beat Generation jazz and original dance music, the piece conveys a modern tone in utilizing the voices of young, urban contemporary spoken word artists. Along with the cast of eight dancers, the artistic team also includes ZviDance Resident Lightning Designer Mark London and Brooklyn-based Set/Visual Designer Josh Higgason.
ZviDance will return to Jacob’s Pillow this year for Escher/Bacon/Rothko in the Doris Duke Theatre from July 20-24. The dance triptych Escher/Bacon/Rothko in three distinct sections is inspired by the artwork of twentieth-century masters M.C. Escher, Francis Bacon, and Mark Rothko.
“We are so excited to be able to present ZviDance twice in the same year in two such different works,” says Jacob’s Pillow Managing Director Andrea Sholler.
“The Mass MoCA evening will invite the audience into Zvi’s process as he creates his newest work On the Road; then in July, ZviDance’s week-long run at Jacob’s Pillow will showcase his acclaimed Escher/Bacon/Rothko, a finished, evening-length work. Both promise to maintain
Zvi Gotheiner’s signature innovative style and his fascinating melding of artistic mediums—in this case, dance and literature.”
“Zvi’s On the Road is part of the secret sub-series we’ve had this season about the 1960s,” notes MASS MoCA Director Joseph Thompson. “Alloy Orchestra’s scored Jimi Hendrix-Grateful Dead concert video, Mikael Jorgensen’s Trimbin band performed a concert of music they composed for lost Fred Engleberg films, and now we wrap it up with Zvi choreographing for Jack Kerouac’s On the Road. Our co-presentations with Jacob’s Pillow are often highlights of the season. We’re looking forward to this one —
a journey with the Beats.”
For more information, visit www.massmoca.org.