Rather than a retrospective of her greatest work, the tour will include the world premieres of Preludes and Fugues, set to the music of Johann Sebastian Bach, and Yowzie, set to a compilation of American jazz arranged by Henry Butler and Steve Bernstein.
The five commissioners of the world premieres are The Joyce Theater (New York), The Kennedy Center (Washington), Auditorium Theatre & Ravinia Festival (Chicago), TITAS/AT&T Performing Arts Center (Dallas) and The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts (Beverly Hills).
“We are honored to be a co-commissioner of two new Twyla Tharp works that she is creating for this momentous celebration of her art,” said Patricia Wolff, interim artistic director at The Wallis. “Although we are only in our third season, we are finding ourselves a part of supporting important artists and projects to finding larger audiences."
Preludes and Fugues is set to excerpts from Bach’s “The Well-Tempered Clavier” Volumes 1 & 2, and Yowzie to a selection of music from “Viper’s Drag,” a compilation of jazz arranged by Butler and Bernstein. Each dance is introduced by a fanfare, both composed by John Zorn.
Santo Loquasto designed the costumes for all the dances, with lighting design by James Ingalls. In a program note describing the evening, Tony winner Tharp said, “Simply put, Preludes and Fugues is the world as it ought to be, Yowzie as it is. The ‘Fanfares’ celebrate both.”
The company comprises dancers who have long histories with Tharp, appearing in her Broadway shows, Movin' Out, The Times They Are A Changin' and Come Fly Away, as well as in her various dance troupes and in the ballet and contemporary dance companies for whom she has created new works. They are John Selya, Rika Okamoto, Matthew Dibble and Ron Todorowski. Newer to Tharp are Daniel Baker, Amy Ruggiero, Ramona Kelley, Nicholas Coppula, Eva Trapp, Savannah Lowery, Reed Tankersley, Kaitlyn Gilliland and Eric Otto.
For more information visit www.thewallis.org.