New dance works and company favorites comprise the program when Michael Mao Dance introduces "Weaving" and "Liondance" at Westbeth's Merce Cunningham Studio. Scheduled to run from May 19-25, the Mao show will also feature such familiar works as "Kinderspiel," "Crossing" and ‘Still Night.’ Born in Shanghai, Michael Mao lives in New York City and has danced for Toby Armour, James Waring, Aileen Passloff, Carolyn Brown, Lotte Goslar and Graciela Daniele. The founder and creator of the Michael Mao ESLdance Project (Learn English Through Dance), Mao's work is known to audiences in the United States, Mexico, Europe and Asia. He is also the founder and creator of the Michael Mao ESLdance Project (Learn English Through Dance). Mao's “Weaving," with music by Kodo, contains images from the choreographer’s childhood memories of Southeast Asia while "Liondance", which is set to traditional Chinese music and based on traditional celebratory dance, is an excerpt from Mr. Mao’s full-evening Firecracker, The Chinese Nutcracker, which is now in development. “Still Night,” was choreographed to Arvo Part’s “Stabat Mater; ”“Kinderspiel,” which is set to Mendelssohn’s ‘Kinderstucker,” with costumes by Baobao Finkelberg, celebrates the dancers’ individualities; and “Crossings,” which is choreographed to the drumming of Kodo with costumes by G. P. Klein.
Tickets are $15 with $10 tickets available for students and senior citizens. The Merce Cunningham Studio is located in the Westbeth Building at 55 Bethune Street, 11th Floor. For reservations call (212) 595 5851.
-- By Murdoch McBride