Innovative ‘EXPULSION’ Dance Series Heads to Boyle Heights

By EGP Staff Report

Best known for their innovative site-specific dance performances, the Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre is bringing its latest installment of the acclaimed EXPULSION dance series to Boyle Heights on March 16.

Three-story high scaffolding converts Boyle Heights’ vacant lot into dance stage. (Photo courtesy of Vivian Babuts)

Continuing its homage to location as central to theme, the dance company is partnering with Danza Floricanto/USA for EXPULSION: Boyle Heights, an acknowledgement of the eastside neighborhood’s predominately Latino population.

A vacant lot at East 1st Street and North Boyle Avenue, across from the historic Boyle Hotel and Mariachi Plaza, will be transformed into a three-story high street stage made of scaffolding, where the unique show combining Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre’s athletic, almost acrobatic movement and Danza Floricanto’s vibrant footwork and colorful costuming will be performed against the dusky skyline.

Artistic Directors Heidi Duckler and Danza Floricanto’s Gema Sandoval have combined their talents to create an “evocative performance,” that “will enliven the space with bold movement, addressing the universal idea of ‘home’ and how one builds and shapes a sense of belonging,” according to the show announcement.

The performance is intended to engage the audience in the exploration of performance art as it intersects with the public space and the area’s cultural and urban identity.

The Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre and Danza Floricanto/USA are both highly regarded in their respective genre.

Founded in 1975, Danza Floricanto/USA is the oldest existing professional Mexican folk dance troupe in Southern California. While the dance company does perform traditional style dances from Mexico, including Aztec rituals and the popular colorful dances of Jalisco and Veracruz, the troupe’s repertoire also includes works that deal with the “conflictive realities of the Chicano experience” and Mexican American cultural identity and immigrant experience in the US Southwest “for the rest of America.”

Formerly the Collage Dance Theatre, the Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre was founded in 1985 and has performed over 100 original dance works at unique sites all over the world. Sites in the Los Angeles region have included the Lincoln Heights Jail, LA City Hall, the Barlow Repertory Hospital in Elysian Park, LA Police Academy, Ambassador Hotel, a laundromat in Santa Monica and the 51st Floor of the Paul Hasting Tower in Downtown Los Angeles.

Each of the dance company’s productions is specifically written and choreographed in keeping with the venue’s history and purpose, as well as its unique physical structure and landscape.

EXPULSION: Boyle Heights is the 6th installation in the EXPULSION series. The program, at 101 S. Boyle Ave, LA 90033, begins at 6 p.m. with live music and curbside conservation. The dance performance begins at 7 p.m. The show is free to the public, but a $10 donation is strongly encouraged. For tickets and more information go to www.heididuckler.org

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March 7, 2013  Copyright © 2012 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.

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