DANCE THEATRE OF ORLANDO PREMIERES K.E.Y.S., A CHOREOGRAPHER’S SHOWCASE JULY 15-17
K.E.Y.S collects various dance pieces to represent the different keys of life to find happiness – with a special number created to pay tribute to the victims of the recent Orlando tragedy.
In conjunction with its current season’s uplifting themes of life, happiness and self-improvement, K.E.Y.S. features a collection of pieces from various choreographers that will each represent different keys of life to find happiness. The individual dance pieces all have similar reoccurring elements that will blend them together into a seamless production, despite each piece’s unique direction from a different artist.
The show will feature five different choreographers with varying backgrounds, skills and experiences. These are:
Marshall Ellis – Ellis is the founder and artistic director of the Dance Theatre of Orlando, the Marshall Ellis Dance School and ME Theatre. With more than two and a half decades of dance and choreography experience, Ellis’ credits include Ballet Austin, London Studio Centre, Orlando Ballet, Cirque du Soleil’s La Nouba and Walt Disney World.
Daniel Hunalp – Hunalp’s training has encompassed several different dance styles throughout his life, starting dance at just six years of age. He has attended several notable schools and performed for various companies, including: Sarasota Ballet, Ann Reinkings Broadway Theatre Project, Tap Dogs, Norwegian Cruise Line and Walt Disney World.
Alex Jones – In addition to graduating from the University of South Florida, Jones has trained with The Dance Center at Satya Life, Highland School of Dance, Harrison Arts Center and LINES Ballet. Jones has worked with Alonzo King, Bill T. Jones and Doug Varone. He has performed in Tunisia, Africa, on behalf of the American Embassy as well as at Walt Disney World in various shows. He is currently the artistic director of Collective Soles Dance Company in Tampa, Fla.
Jani Walsh-Weber – After spending 20 years as a professional dancer, Walsh-Weber has accumulated a wealth of experience throughout her career, performing in some of Broadway’s greatest works, such as: Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Bob Fosse’s Dancin’, A Chorus Line, Starlight Express, Sweet Charity, Cats and West Side Story. She is currently a directing consultant and choreographer for Walt Disney Parks & Resorts and Disney Event Group.
Cindy Wilson – As a graduate of the New York University Tisch School of the Arts with a B.F.A. in Dance, Wilson has performed with several modern dance companies in NYC and regional theatres. She has choreographed international pieces in Japan and Canada, as well as pieces for Viking
Cruises and Disney Cruise Line. She is currently a choreographer for Walt Disney World, working on pieces for parades, conventions, stage shows and TV shows.
Each of the talented choreographers have created and choreographed original pieces for K.E.Y.S., each featuring their own unique style and music. The night will unfold with moving pieces that reflect various stages and aspects of life and how each individual deals with them. The K.E.Y.S. collection will feature the following dances:
Lives! A Tribute (Wilson) – A tribute to the victims of the tragic Orlando nightclub shooting that happened June 12, 2016, ending the lives of 49 individuals. The piece will feature live drummers and singers, and will kick off with a song titled Wading in the Water – written, composed and performed by France Neil. *Donations will be accepted during the show to aid the One Orlando Fund.
Love ME (Ellis) – Original work telling the story of three girls trying to find a key to someone’s heart set to music by Ben E. King.
Discombobulate (Ellis) – An original work accompanied by music from Hans Zimmer that showcases life’s distractions and the disconnected parts of life.
Sam I Am (Ellis) – A kinetic solo performed by company dancer Christopher McKenzie to music by Sam Smith.
Fear A Bhata or “Boatman” (Ellis) – An original solo peerformed by company dancer Lauren Sherwood to live music. Fear A Bhata (Boatman) is a traditional Gaelic song estimated to be from the late 1700s, and the clarinet version will be played live during the dance by performer Jessica Pollack. Music composed by Chelsea Komschlies.
o Pollack graduated Northwestern University cum laude in 2013, where she earned a Bachelor of Music in clarinet performance under Steve Cohen, Lawrie Bloom, and Leslie Grimm. She studied chamber music at IES Vienna and the University of Vienna under Stefan Neubauer of the Vienna State Opera House. She is actively involved in the performing arts and music community, producing many story-heavy shows and performing regionally.
Love, in Darkest Hour (Jones) – The works of composer Daniel Hope and visual artist Gwen Luffman come together with Alex Jones’ choreography for this touching ensemble piece.
Ain’t it a Kick in the Head (Walsh-Weber) – This piece is heavily influenced by Walsh-Weber’s time as a dance captain for Broadway’s Dancin’, with choreography that resembles Bob Fosse’s movement style and technique.
Stay a Little Longer (Hunalp) – An original piece set to the musical duo Brothers Osborne’s song of the same name.
K.E.Y.S. will have a three performances during the July 15-17 weekend at 8:30 p.m. at the ME Theatre (1300 La Quinta Drive, Orlando, FL, 32809). Doors open 30 minutes prior to the start of the performance. Each show lasts an hour and 45 minutes, including an interactive 15-minute intermission. Beer, wine, water, soda and light snacks are available for purchase. Tickets are $20 per person.
For more information and to purchase tickets, visit DanceTheatreOfOrlando.com or call 407-816-7080.