Wednesday, March 14, at 7:30 pm | Post-performance Q&A
Trey McIntyre, one of the best and brightest choreographers in the world today, has the vision to create dance about the human experience that springs anew from a classical ballet underpinning. The artistic director of a band of like-minded dance diplomats, the Trey McIntyre Project, will captivate Jorgensen’s audience on Wednesday, March 14, at 7:30 p.m. The dancers will hold a Q&A with the audience afterward.
McIntyre has created more than 90 works for companies such as American Ballet Theatre, Stuttgart Ballet, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, New York City Ballet and Ballet de Santiago (Chile). He has choreographed with ballet companies in Houston, Washington, Oregon and Memphis. He sets his one-of-a-kind works to music ranging from Beethoven and the Beatles to Etta James and Peter, Paul and Mary.
Los Angeles Times critic Lewis Segal said of McIntyre, “There is indeed such a thing as genuine 21st century ballet, and it belongs more to this guy from Wichita than any of the over-hyped pretenders from England, France or Russia.” McIntyre says himself that the sense of space, coming from the Great Plains, finds its way into his work.
This man is bold enough to set the world on fire from Boise, Idaho, where in 2008 he based his company of nine dancers who often burst onto the local scene in “SpUrbans,” spontaneous acts of dance, and have become local celebs in their chosen city. Now on a nationwide tour, TMP in May will go to Asia as one of four dance companies chosen by the State Department as emissaries in the DanceMotion USA program, produced by the Brooklyn Academy of Music. The company this season has collaborated with Preservation Hall Jazz Band in several performances that build distinctively on McIntyre’s 2008 work, “Ma Maison.”
The 6-foot-6, Midwestern dynamo has received dance honors, including the Gold Medal of Lifetime Achievement from the National Society of Arts and Letters, a Choo-San Goh Award for Choreography and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships. He was named one of Dance Magazine’s “25 to Watch” in 2001, one of People magazine’s “25 Hottest Bachelors” in 2003 and one of Out Magazine’s 2008 “Tastemakers.”
In its program at Jorgensen, TMP will open with “Leatherwing Bat,” which premiered at Jacob’s Pillow in 2008 and is set to music by Peter Paul and Mary. That piece will be followed by the brand new “Bad Winter,” which McIntyre calls a kind of diary of a recent difficult period in his personal life. The piece just premiered this February, with music by the Cinematic Orchestra.
The last piece on the program is “Blue Until June,” set to songs of the late, great Etta James. McIntyre says the half-hour piece explores the heavy overlay of romantic expectations, as depicted in pop music. Premiered by Washington Ballet at the Kennedy Center in 2000, the work uses a simpler choreographic vocabulary from that time in his career refreshed by TMP dancers.
TMP’s nine dancers are Benjamin Behrends, Chanel DaSilva, Lauren Edson, Brett Perry, Yarinet Restrepo (tenderfoot), Annali Rose, John Michael Schert, Travis Walker and Ashley Werhun.
A Q&A session with the dancers will follow the performance, which is sponsored by New England Foundation for the Arts.
Jorgensen Center for the Performing Arts is located at 2132 Hillside Road on the UConn campus in Storrs. Tickets are $30, $27 and $25, with some discounts. For tickets and information, call the Box Office 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon-Fri at 860.486.4226, or order online at: jorgensen.uconn.edu. Free, convenient parking is available across the street in the North Garage.