The Following is a list of pieces performed by the company over the past ten years.
Between the Lines: A Work in Progress – Between the Lines is a mixed-genre artistic collaboration about the reflections of three people (a gay female, black male, Latino male) who reconnect as they look back on how they matured physically, emotionally and spiritually when growing up together. As they share the paths they have taken, their journeys become an examination of the universal truths that encompass all of us in seeking identity and purpose. The work asks questions about race, heritage and gender in an emerging America that is challenging old stereotypes and looking past the dividing line between fear and acceptance, and personal responsibility and victimization. The diverse cast of actors, dancers, and spoken word and rap artists are accompanied by a trumpet, cello, violin and drums as they address questions about the driving nature of what we carry from our past that both haunt and strengthen us.
Lenox Street Project – Lenox Street Project created by the teens at the Lenox Street Housing Project with the staff of Anna Myer and Dancers. The work is a mixed- genre performance, spoken word, rap, dance, voice, cello and trumpet performed with members of AMAD. The work gives voice to inner-city youth and their community.
Hoop Suite – Anna Myer and Dancers (AMAD) and North American Family Institute (NAFI) (www.nafi.com) in conjunction with Youth Link, created Hoop Suite, a rap opera that has evolved from a unique collaboration between one of the area’s top performing dance and theater companies and youth from Boston’s toughest public housing developments. Inspired by Myer’s Street Talk, Suite Talk, Hoop Suite melds classical music and dance with spoken word, rap, percussive instruments, and hip- hop movement. However, Hoop Suite takes an emboldened step forward by incorporating inner-city teen artists and encouraging them to explore dance, drumming, poetry, and behind the scenes technical work in a professional setting. In addition to building confidence in youth, the performance aspect of this project is built on a long-term educational plan designed to engender literacy, responsibility, and opportunity. The larger humanitarian goal was to forge bonds within and between diverse communities in the Boston area and urban centers worldwide.
Hindsight Now – As the title suggests, the theme of the work highlights transformation, using the gift of hindsight to inform, fuel, and enrich the moment of now and lead to wholeness. Deeply personal and universally sweeping, nine dancers led by acclaimed choreographer Anna Myer, and four cellists interacted on stage with high- tech sets and “cello carts” designed by Emmy Award-winning set and production designer, Katha Seidman.
Street Talk, Suite Talk – Street Talk, Suite Talk was a unique and extraordinary combination of people with diverse approaches to art. The juxtaposition of artistic voices and backgrounds generated a dynamic vocabulary of dance, music and poetry. In a world that is often fragmented and distrustful, Street Talk, Suite Talk forged bonds between these diverse worlds, with all working to create a common vision by fusing rap, contemporary dance, and music for violin. The evening-length piece was developed through a collaborative process involving the choreographer, seven young poet-rappers, seven dancers, the composer Jakov Jakoulov, and violinist Mark Berger.
Penumbra – The work was a collaborative effort with neon sculptors Alejandro and Moira Sina. A group of ten children joined six company dancers to perform to the music of Bach’s cello suites. The performers’ overlap of ages, races and cultures embodied the concept of penumbra. By bringing together different artistic disciplines and performers of different ages and races, Myer drew a broader audience to experience a common center.
All At Once – All At Once featured music by Russian-born composer Jakov Jakoulov, conducted by Susan Davenny Wyner and the New England String Ensemble. The piece included nine dancers, the conductor and twelve musicians (six violins, five cellos, and one bass) all on stage together.
Angle of Repose – Angle of Repose is a geological term referring to the plane in which rocks, dirt and debris come to rest, as well as the title of a novel by Wallace Stegner. This piece was set on ten dancers, including two children and a 77 year old woman. Danced to an eclectic array of music, including, Jackie Wilson’s Lonely TearDrops, Brahms, and the new-age sound of the Penguin Cafe Orchestra, Angle of Repose charted the unfolding of a life. Built on layers of choreography that use leaning, resting, falling and propulsive movement, the dance developed as a consequence of the weight of preceding and surrounding events and our attempt to give them shape.
Bluebird No. 173 – Featuring seven adults and seven children, this work was inspired by Marc Chagall’s painting, “The Birthday Party,” as well as musings on domestic life, love songs, and the image of a bluebird. The music, drawn from popular culture, pushed at the boundaries of nostalgia and sensuality.
Heartchunks – This provocative piece explored the passions of the human heart. It is punctuated by love-struck cartwheels and heart-stabbing gestures that surround the centerpiece, a romantic pas de deux. Heartchunks was set to a musical collage of Chopin, Chris Isaak’s Two Hearts, Michael Convertino’s It’s a Big Planet, and Los Tres Ases’s Sabra Dios and Queseas Feliz.
In Italian – Set to Vivaldi, Bellini, Verdi, and Offenbach, this sumptuous piece juxtaposed the religious themes of crucifixion and stigmatization, found in Italian Renaissance and Baroque art, with a contemporary, street-style pantomime of Italian conversational gestures.
Quintet to Brahms – Based on elegant postures swung free, this full-length piece created an emotional tumult that is as quixotic as the dancers’ 14-inch Russian tutus and their bare feet. The strength and musicality of Brahms resonated throughout.
Wine and Roses – Exploring the infinite nature of the human soul, Wine and Roses used a combination of movement derived from ordinary activities such as driving a car and those improvised from the ritual forms of Tai Chi. The dancers explored fluidity, definitive shapes and flight through the air, while establishing the language of relationships that celebrate wholeness and the connections between us.