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The mission of Garth Fagn Dance is to conduct cultural, educational and charitable activities including futherance of the Founding Artistic Director's artistic vision, production of dance theatre of the highest quality, development of new works by the Founding Artistic Director, development of future dancers and expansion of audiences.
GARTH FAGAN DANCE, now in its 35 th anniversary season, is at the top of its profession. The company's dancers are renowned for their individuality, unmannered approach, and virtuosity."The handsome, exotic, completely concentrated Fagan dancers move as if they were born speaking Fagan's language and they love the feel of it in their bodies," wrote Elizabeth Kendall in Vogue. "The dancers he has trained," said David Vaughan in Ballet Review, "are virtuosi, no doubt about it, and fearless too, able to sustain long adagio balances, to change direction in mid-air, to vary the dynamic of a turn, to stop on a dime."
The Fagan company has been cited for its excellence and originality with a New York Governor's Arts Award. Their distinctive movement quality comes from years of training in Fagan Technique, the teaching method Garth Fagan, company founder and artistic director, developed hand-in-hand with his own dance vocabulary when he started the ensemble in 1970. The company has five winners of "Bessie" Awards (New York Performance Awards) in its ranks: Garth Fagan, Norwood Pennewell, Steve Humphrey, Natalie Rogers and Sharon Skepple.
The troupe has performed throughout the United States, Europe, Africa, Asia, the Near and Middle East, South America, New Zealand, Australia and the West Indies. It celebrated its 15th anniversary in Harare, Zimbabwe, while on tour for the United States Information Agency. Foreign tours have included, a 13-city tour of The Netherlands and appearances at France's Maison de la Danse and Chateauvallon Festival, Turkey's Istanbul Festival, the New Zealand International Arts Festival, Germany's Internationales Tanzfest N.R.W., Switzerland's Basel Tanz, the Israel Festival in Jerusalem, the Vienna Festival-Tanz, and the Festival of Two Worlds in Spoleto, Italy. In 1994, the company opened the then newly renovated American Center in Paris, France. In 1996, principal dancers were invited by the Federation Caledonienne de Danse to perform in "La Nuitdes Etoiles" along with members from the New York City Ballet, the Paris Opera Ballet and the Kirov Ballet. In March of 1994, principal dancers Norwood Pennewell and Natalie Rogers were invited to participate in the "66th Annual Academy Awards" broadcast.
In 1993, Garth Fagan Dance went on a national tour with the Wynton Marsalis Septet performing Fagan's critically acclaimed full-evening length work Griot New York. The company was seen nationally on the "Tonight Show" starring Jay Leno in that same piece, and Griot New York aired worldwide on the PBS "Great Performances -- Dance in America" series in the spring of 1995. The broadcast marked the companyâ s third appearance on "Great Performances -- Dance in America."
They have performed at Jacob's Pillow, the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, American Dance Festival and Spoleto USA, with yearly seasons at the Joyce Theater, New York City. In 2004 they were one of four dance companies performing in Jazz in Motion, part of the opening celebratory events at the Frederick P. Rose Hall, the new home of Jazz at Lincoln Center, and returned this fall 2005 for their 35 th anniversary season in New York City.
- Suzanne Tunnell
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