Several workshops and performances are available to the public this week, all centered around Evidence, A Dance Company, scheduled to take the MSU Riley Center stage on Friday.
Evidence will perform a new piece called "On Earth Together." Choreographed by Ronald K. Brown, the dance company's artistic director, the piece is set to the music of Stevie Wonder.
Brown says the work is about "compassion" and "a commitment to making the world a better place."
Brown founded the Brooklyn, New York based dance company in 1985.
Events this week begin Wednesday with a community reception to welcome the dancers, followed by a town hall meeting with representatives of the Mississippi Arts Council.
A lecture and demonstration for students in grades 5-12 is scheduled for Thursday, as well as a movement integration workshop for teachers, and a family dance workshop for ages 7 and up.
On Friday a master dance class and lunch will be held for area college students. The $20 cost also includes admission to that evening's performance. A pre-performance lecture will be held. The performance begins at 7:30 p.m., and a post-performance discussion with the performers will follow.
"This is the first time we've ever had a pre-performance talk and a post-performance talk," said Charlotte Tabereaux, education director of the MSU Riley Center.
She is encouraging families to participate in the events, learn more about modern dance, and meet professional dancers. She also said the Mississippi Arts Commission town hall meeting on Wednesday will be a good opportunity for people to learn how they can be more involved in their arts community and give feedback to the commission.
WORKSHOPS AND PERFORMANCES
Here's what's planned this week at the MSU Riley Center, 2200 Fifth St., to coincide with Friday's performance of Evidence, A Dance Company:
Wednesday, Feb. 8
• 5 p.m.: Community Reception to welcome and meet dancers. The reception, sponsored by the Meridian Council for the Arts, is free and open to the public.
• 6 p.m.: A Mississippi Arts Commission Town Hall meeting will be held to receive feedback regarding arts and culture from individuals, organizations and institutions to assist in the next MAC Strategic Plan.
Thursday, Feb. 9
• 10:30 a.m.: A lecture and demonstration will be held for area schools for students in grades 5-12. The cost is $6 for the specifically choreographed performance for school groups. Reservations must be made by school personnel with the MSU Riley Center box office.
• 2 p.m.-3:30 p.m.: A Text to Movement Workshop will be held for area teachers. The workshop is free. Teachers are asked to register by Feb. 8 by calling (601) 696-2263.
• 6 p.m.-7:30 p.m.: A free Family Dance Workshop will be held for ages 7 and up for area students, dancers and families. Participants are asked to dress comfortably for movement, and to register in advance by emailing the number in their group to Charlotte Tabereaux at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Friday, Feb. 10
• 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m.: A Master Dance Class and "Talk Back" Lunch will be held for area college students and dance instructors. The cost is $20 per person, which includes lunch and that evening's performance. Participants will interact with dancers who provide hands-on training and share what it takes to successfully pursue a career as a professional dancer. Register by Feb. 9 by calling (601) 696-2263.
• 6 p.m.: A free pre-performance lecture on modern dance will be held by Dance Professor Julie Hammond-White.
• 7:30 p.m.: Evidence, A Dance Company will perform Friday, Feb. 10, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $34-$40.
• 9 p.m.: A post-performance discussion will be held at 9 p.m. for the audience by the dancers and Evidence Artistic Director Ronald K. Brown.