Koresh Dance Company on tour
Renowned for their powerful stage presence, Philadelphiaâ€™s Koresh Dance Company has been hailed as a vital force to both national and international stages. The technically superb and emotionally compelling company of 10 dancers was founded in 1991 by Israeli-born choreographer and Artistic Director, Ronen Koresh. Nearly 25 years later, Koresh Dance Company (KDC) is defined by their openhearted approach that permeates both on and off stage and their ability to break boundaries by drawing new audiences to contemporary dance. As one of the United States most prolific touring companies, KDC has brought engaging performances and educational residencies to audiences in 38 states and 7 countries. Dynamic, nonstop performances showcase works that range from humorous and eloquent to passionate and explosive. The signature Koresh Style is an accumulation of many dance styles transmitted through the sharp technical standards of the Koresh dancers. Watching a Koresh performance, you will experience moments of deep emotional charge with theatricality and boldness associated with Martha Graham, periods of constant motion and flow influenced by the Luigi jazz style and athletic precision allied with ballet. Koreshâ€™s Israeli heritage continues to differentiate the movement aesthetic as his roots in Israeli folk dance emerge in movements, stage patterns and gestures, but it is Roniâ€™s ability to
Photo by Bill Hebert
instinctually draw on pedestrian movement, humor and his masculine approach that allows audiences unacquainted with contemporary dance to instantly connect with the Koresh aesthetic. In addition to the vast collection of works set by founder and artistic director, Roni Koresh, KDC repertoire includes works by guest choreographers including Donald Byrd (Spectrum Dance Theater), Ohad Naharin (Batsheva Dance Company), Robert Battle (Battleworks/Alvin Ailey), Itzik Galili (Galili Dance) and Paul Selwyn Norton. Investing the same passion into education and community building as they are renown for on stage, Koresh Dance Company provides diverse outreach offerings that connect with dancers and non-dancers of all ages. Perhaps best known for their dynamic residency opportunities for dancers, KDC offers a holistic program that includes everything from master classes and setting works to workshops that focus on career longevity, collaboration and creativity. The Koresh approach to outreach goes beyond the dance community offering engaging activities for working professionals, dance fans and the Jewish Community. Our robust educational program in Philadelphia which features programs for underserved youth, exceptional teenagers, professional artists and everyone in-between allows Koresh to tour with a comprehensive outreach curriculum that has been refined through practice. Community building, education and outreach are at the forefront of the Koresh experience!
What the Critics Say on tour
“It’s all dance, and it’s all art ”
– Dance Magazine
“The dancers of Koresh are technically superb, but even better, they are allowed to be individuals.” – Wendy Perron , Dance Magazine
“ Exalted, the audience rises to their feet, giving the company a thunderous ear-shattering standing ovation.” – The Dance Insider
“ The expression and performances proved fresh, urgent and deeply persuasive .” – LA Times
“ They consistently astonish with their skill, when all nine of them move together as a unit, they become a single entity, a piece of life moving as if with one heartbeat. ” – San Antonio Express
“ . . . A vibrant ensemble of 10 that offered non-stop dynamism throughout its performance. ” – The Denver Post
“For both Koresh and the eight dancers, there are no movements without eloquence. That they are technically superb is a given; what sets them apart is their explosive energy, their big-heartedness, and their humor.” – Reading Eagle “In today’s terminology, the Koresh Dance Co. rocks!”
– The Virginia Gazette
“This is an exciting company, with choreography full of surprises and dancers equipped to execute the often-stunning shifts in dynamic and mood.” – San Antonio Express “The entire evening’s performance was dancing at its most profound. I can’t remember the last time a dance company drew tears from me; this one did, several times.” – Reading Eagle
Photo by Gabriel Bienczycki
Presenter Resources As a self-represented artist, Koresh Dance Company allocates its team resources to supporting a well-planned and successful engagement in your community. We pride ourselves on seamless performance support from the first phone call to the last step. Residency planning includes: •
Residency and Outreach Design
Technical Flexibility and Modifications
Grant Writing Support
Photography: online resources for easy access to high res digital images
Video: high quality video of performance, outreach and interviews; Behind the Scenes documentaries
Social Media Support: Artistic Director and dancers available for blogging and interface with your social media campaign, Koresh will post to our online resources including website, Facebook (13,500+ likes), Twitter (600+ followers)
Publicity Support: Artistic Director and dancers available for interviews with print, radio and TV
Photo by Bill Hebert
What the Presenters Say “I think we can all safely say that last night’s dance performance was the best we’ve ever had. It will be a hard act to follow. We got what we had hoped for and more!” –Hazel Barber, Program Committee BIG ARTS, Sanibel, FL “If there were a thermometer to describe admiration, maybe it would be called Koreshmeter. And that thermometer would have reached its maximum last night.“ –Geraldina Baca Spross, Presidente, Universidad Francisco Marroquin, Organizacion Para las Artes, Guatemala City, Guatemala “What a wonderful engagement the Koresh Company gave us in Oneonta! Seven Koresh dancers taught four sections of Thursday classes at Oneonta High School that fully engaged more than 140 students. All the dancers worked so well with the students and demonstrated their talents as teachers. The performances were exciting and filled with so many special moments that inspired a great range of thoughts, from introspection to happiness and laughter. The Ravel Bolero was an astounding piece, so filled with motion and infused with glee and brought the audience immediately to its feet at the end of the performance. Our audiences clearly appreciated the fine work of the creative choreography of Roni Koresh and the artistry of the dancers.” –Diana Staley Kang, OCA Board of Directors Oneonta, NY “One of the most amazing things I have had the privilege to see on that stage in my 33year career.” –Guidance Counselor, Indiana Jr. High School regarding the performance by their seventh graders following Koresh’s moment and expression workshop Indiana, PA “ . . . please allow me to tell you that never ever have I seen a more professional group than yourselves. The technical crew, the choreographer, the management and the dancers are all true professionals... From the day we first got in touch until the performance day, everything went so smoothly... you showed great understanding and did your best to adapt to our hall’s technical limitations. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for making such a meticulous operation seem effortless.” –Meric Soylu, Director Is Sanat Istanbul Hall, Istanbul, Turkey “Koresh Dance Company is indeed a first rate company and I was proud to have opened my season with this outstanding ensemble. I will recommend your company to any presenter I speak with and I look forward to a future return date at my venue.” –Randall Presswood, Director Performing Arts Facilities and Programming Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania, Bloomsburg, PA
Photo by Bill Hebert
Education, Outreach & Residency on tour
Koresh Dance Company brings the same passion to education, outreach and community building as we are famous for on stage. Ask us what we can do to energize your audience! Our diverse outreach offerings connect with dancers and non-dancers ages 2 to adult.
Did you know?
Through their many teaching, education and outreach programs, each year the Koresh Dance Company serves every level of dancer from non-dancers to professionals. The dancers in the Koresh Dance Company can offer classes and workshops in virtually every style of dance from Roniâ€™s coveted advanced modern jazz to ballet, hip hop, tap and more. The Koresh Dance Company utilizes high-quality behind the scenes video footage to add distance learning techniques that add longevity, depth and flexibility to their outreach experience. Through The Koresh School of Dance, and our outreach activities in Philadelphia and around the country the Koresh Dance Company serves more than 25,000 students a year with educational programs. Each Koresh dancer is an educator in their own right that specializes in different forms of dance and different age groups. Each residency activity will be led by a dancer/teacher that specializes with the selected community.
The goal of a Koresh residency is to reach into multiple facets of your community to connect with new audiences or deepen existing relationships. Residencies can last from two days to two weeks. We look forward to working with you to develop a tailored residency best suited to your community with audience building in mind.
Contact: Dara Schmoyer, Company Manager firstname.lastname@example.org Studio: 215-751-0959 Dara Direct: 610-470-6334 Or go to www.koreshdance.org
Photo by Lindsay Browning
Sample Outreach Offerings On Tour
“Styles of Dance” Mini Performance / Lecture/Demonstration:
This interactive assembly program focusing on the many styles of dance, including ballet, tap, jazz, modern and hip hop, covers the differences and similarities between forms and how each is infused into the Koresh Style of contemporary dance. This program has no capacity or age restrictions- invite the whole school or a retirement community! Location, length and technical requirements are flexible and can be offered to those bussed in to your facility or at a local venue. (S, U, D, C)
Movement & Expression:
This small group workshop is ideal for 20- 40 students between the ages of 10 and 14 or 4th – 8th grade. This workshop can include one session or multiple sessions, students with no dance training (or a lot) create their own movement to poetry in a safe and supportive environment. This program increases self-esteem and assists students in making connections between movement and meaning. Longer residencies may end in a student performance. Great ties with English and literacy! (S, D)
Video & Discussion:
Each session uses a high quality behind the scenes documentary and an in-person meeting to deepen your communities understanding. Video can be used days or weeks before the Koresh performance to extend your residency. • Career Longevity– Company dancers teach about care of the body, safe training and career paths in dance. (U, D, C) • The Finishing Touches– Choreography is only one piece of the puzzle in creating dance. Artistic Director Ronen Koresh will teach aspiring choreographers about lighting design, musical choice, commissioning scores, costume creation and more! (U, D,C) • Cross Disciplinary Arts Workshop– How can dancers, musicians, poets and visual artists work together? Ask the expert, Roni Koresh, who regularly collaborates on and commissions original music and soundscapes for his work. Artistic Director Roni Koresh will work with cross-disciplinary art students to find common ground and inspiration. (U, D, C) • Focus on Israel–Artistic Director, Ronen Koresh will talk about growing up in Israel and how his Israeli roots influenced his choreography. (U, C, J)
All level Hip Hop or Stretch & Strengthen Classes:
This small group workshop is ideal for 20- 40 students off all ages and levels. Koresh teachers provide an energetic and fun workout. Offer it in schools instead of gym class, in your business districts as a “Power Lunch” or “Workout Take Over” at the gym in town. A great way to get your community moving! (S, U, D, C)
Invite your audience to stay after the performance to engage in a lead a question and answer session analyzing the performance. The discussion will make use of critical response methods to give the audience a better understanding of the choreography. (S, U, D, C)
Israeli Mini Performance:
Partner with a synagogue or your Jewish Community Center (JCC) to offer a mini performance focused on Roni’s work that showcases his choreography which demonstrates use of movement, patterns and musical choices that draw from his early training in Jewish folk dance and his on-going connection to the life and people of Israel. (C, J)
Dance Technique, Repertory Class or Master Class:
Classes in “Koresh Style” modern/jazz, ballet, hip hop, and tap are available for up to 40 students per class of all ages and ability levels. Company members will provide an engaging technique class structured to help improve dancers’ precision, flow and musicality through challenging choreography including choreography from the performance. The material will be adapted for your students so they find it both inspiring and challenging with the goal to build self-esteem and provide a direct connection with members of KDC. (D)
Setting Choreography or Creating New Work:
Longer residencies may include setting existing Koresh repertoire or creating new work on dancers in your community, with the option of opening your Koresh performance or incorporating your community dancers into the show. (D)
Invite your community to watch as the company puts the final touches on the performance during Company or technical rehearsal. Roni will interact with the audience and answer questions about the process. (S, U, D, C)
KEY: S - K-12 Schools U - University, College or Upper High School D - Dancers C - Community J - Jewish
Dancers Melissa Rector
Fang-Ju Chou Gant
Koresh Dance Company Ronen Koresh, Artistic Director & Founder
Alon Koresh, Executive Director Melissa Rector, Assistant Artistic Director Nir Koresh, School Director Dara Schmoyer, Company Manager Haley Bradstreet, Operations Coordinator Jenny Filer, Project Manager Kate Fox, Grant Writer Teresa VanDenend Sorge, Koresh Kids Dance Coordinator Sandy Mitchel, Videographer Bella Pizzati, Kathy Cho, Graphic Designers
Board of Directors Steve Lazin, President David Cooper, Vice President Leslie Baker Boris Niza Davidson William Duncan Toni Alperin Goldberg Ronen Koresh Alon Koresh Jonathan Makar Alessandra H. Nicolas Ellen Varenhorst
All photos in this program are by Frank Bicking at Dance Dad Photo LLC unless otherwise noted.
2002 Rittenhouse Street Philadelphia, PA 19103 215-751-0959 www.koreshdance.org
Koresh Dance Company is grateful to the many individuals, foundations and corporations who generously support the company. Major supporters include The Dexter F. and Dorothy H. Baker Foundation, Meegan Spector Rubin, Dance/USA Philadelphia, The Philadelphia Cultural Fund, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and the William Penn Foundation, among others.
a r t is t ic di r ec t o r & f o u n de r
Ronen (Roni) Koresh was born and raised in Israel and began his dance education at a young age as he trained with his mother, a folk dancer in the Yemenite tradition, and with a local Tel Aviv folk dance group. Two of his earliest teachers in Israel were Alida Gera and Micha Deri. At 17, he moved on to more comprehensive study with Nira Paz and Moshe Romano and then became a member of Martha Graham’s Batsheva 2 Dance Company. In 1983, following a three year enlistment in the Israeli army during which he was able to continue his dance training, Roni immigrated to the United States to pursue a career in dance beyond Israel. He trained at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and in 1984, began performing with Shimon Braun’s acclaimed Waves Jazz Dance Company in Philadelphia. Roni was one of the original Evening Magazine Dancers and won a People’s Choice Award as Philadelphia’s Most Outstanding Jazz Dancer. Roni is a multi-year recipient of fellowships from the Pew Charitable Trusts, the Philadelphia College of Performing Arts and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. Companies that have commissioned his work include Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, Giordano Dance Chicago, GroundWorks Dance Theatre, Las Vegas Contemporary, Odyssey Dance Theatre, Spectrum Dance Theater, the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts and Dance Celebration: a co-presentation of Dance Affiliates and Penn Presents. Koresh’s capacity for movement creation and ability to transform a dancer’s physique have made him a sought after teacher. He has been on faculty at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia since 1986. He has taught master classes and created choreography on students throughout the country and has participated in various festivals including Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival and the Northwest National Dance Project. In 1993, he opened the Koresh School of Dance where he teaches classes and intensive workshops. He formed Koresh Dance Company in 1991 which quickly established an international reputation for highly technical and emotionally charged work. Since forming the company, Roni has created a vast repertoire of over 40 works and continues to create two to three new works each year. The company tours extensively, both nationally and internationally, performing Roni’s work and the work of guest choreographers. An avid collaborator, Roni is an integral member of the Philadelphia arts community, often initiating interdisciplinary projects with other artists. As Roni creates and develops his work, he continues to be an artistic resource and leading force in the Philadelphia community.
Photo by Lindsay Browning
Koresh Dance Company A t H o me
The Koresh Dance Company mission is fully dedicated to the enrichment of the cultural landscape and artistic reputation of Philadelphia. In addition to our bi-annual home seasons as the in residence dance company of the Suzanne Roberts Theatre, our Philadelphia initiatives include:
As a beacon for contemporary dance in Philadelphia, Koresh Dance Company, serves the dance community in Philadelphia by presenting local choreographers in the bi-monthly Koresh Artist Showcase, giving artists in the community the opportunity to perform their work at no cost and to connect with a wider audience. In 2013 the Koresh Artist Showcase grew into the Come Together Festival presenting 27 dance companies in 11 performances over 9 days.
Koresh Kids Dance brings arts education to underserved children by creating partnerships with Philadelphia public schools and providing free weekly dance classes for their students. This program uses dance to promote creativity as a conduit for life goals and non-violence and gives children invaluable tools that can be used in all aspects of their lives.
The Koresh School of Dance, one of the largest and most successful dance schools in Philadelphia, serves as the companyâ€™s home and remains dedicated to its goal of being a dance training center for the Philadelphia community. Providing year round dance education of over 65 classes a week in all levels and genres, the School educates over 20,000 students a year for students ages 2 to adult of all levels. In 2008, the Koresh Youth Ensemble was established to fill the gap for serious, young dancers who require intensive training and greater performance opportunities in the study of contemporary dance. Students who demonstrate both the talent and desire to become professionals are selected to join the group. Under the direction of Melissa Rector, Assistant Artistic Director of Koresh Dance Company, members learn original choreography and company repertory and are provided with professional performance experience.
What Critics Say A t H o me
“The finale was typically turbocharged – because when the dust settles after a Koresh concert, you must leave bedazzled.” – Merilyn Jackson, Philadelphia Inquirer “Those of us who critique the arts go wild with delight when an artist we’ve been watching for many years creates a work that transcends all he has done before.” – Merilyn Jackson, Philadelphia Inquirer “Koresh dancers have long been known for their exceptionally fine-toned physiques — and the caliber of their movement execution is simply marvelous, regardless of the technical requirements. It’s as if the outfit has been injected with a jolt of crisp energy.” – Philadelphia City Paper “Koresh trademarks – exciting lifts, athleticism that borders on gymnastics and plenty of passionate partnering.” – Philadelphia City Paper “If you like your dancing hard, fast and intense, the Koresh Dance Company is for you . . . liquidly sensual . . . clean, expressive gestures . . .imparting a richness of movement to the events on stage...there’s a sheer physical joy to this allegrismo execution . . . ” – Philadelphia Inquirer “Technical knockouts! The Koresh Dance Company’s dancers displayed dazzling skill” and “instantly made clear their technical prowess” “dance that engulfed the stage like brush fire.” – Philadelphia Weekly “Koresh Dance Company . . . stormed the stage and took no prisoners.” – Merilyn Jackson, Philadelphia Inquirer Koresh’s dancers switch seamlessly from one style to another, often within a single phrase. They also move quickly, precisely, and with almost no pauses. – Nancy G. Heller, The Inquirer Fortunately, one of the ways to tell that one hasn’t become cynical is the joy that bubbles up in the gut when you witness something truly wonderful onstage…I came away boggled and bedazzled by what I’m prepared to call a major work. – Gary L. Day, The Broad Street Review
Welcome to our new home! As a world renowned dance company and a sustainable pillar in the Philadelphia dance community, we are grateful to have grown significantly over the past two decades with your support. To enable future programmatic growth in a financially sustainable manner, our multi-faceted dance organization has taken root in an 8,750 square foot building at 2002 Rittenhouse Square: a former theatre-turned-gym that will become a center of expressive creativity and artistic inspiration. Our lease was up at the same time as the opportunity presented itself to acquire this building with a great location and great potential where we were able to negotiate a lease-to-purchase agreement. We moved to the space as tenants in August 2013 and began a campaign to raise $800,000 needed to purchase and renovate the building without increasing our ongoing operating expenses. We are working tirelessly to raise the full funding we need to complete the purchase and make this our new permanent home. In anticipation of a successful fundraising effort, and to return 2002 Rittenhouse to a purpose that echoes its history and enhances an already lively neighborhood, Koresh has begun renovations to return the space to its former glory and make it a welldesigned space for dance and classes. As we launch into the next 20 years, it is time for Koresh to have a home as enduring as the Company itself. By buying, not renting, a larger and permanent space, Koresh Dance Company will strengthen its role as a leader and a community for creative growth and connection, and as the heart and an ambassador for Philadelphia dance. With an additional studio and a multi-media suite, this space is not only a home for our professional touring company, but will serve as: a hub for the cityâ€™s arts and culture community, a center where we can actively nurture and support local artists and companies, a dance school to educate novice to advanced dancers, and a place to host guest companies from around the world. We invite you to partner with us and invest in a new era. Though the company tours around the globe, Koresh remains committed to enriching the cultural landscape and artistic reputation of Philadelphia through performance, instruction and community outreach.