Ensemble Español’s 37th American Spanish Dance & Music Festival is coming to Chicago in June. For the 13th season, North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie will host the Flamenco Passion gala—highlighting the 20th anniversary of Dame Libby’s International Flamenco masterwork ballet, Bolero—with performances from June 12 through June 23.
“Festival time is always exciting for us,” remarks Dame Libby Komaiko, Founder and Artistic Director of Ensemble Español. “I am also thrilled to mark the 20th anniversary of Bolero given the overwhelming international reception throughout its history. Sitting in the audience for the 2010 Dance for Life benefit gala concert at the Harris Theater in Millennium park, my heart was passionately pumping as the dancers began and my soul took flight when the entire audience jumped to their feet in uproarious applause as the company devoured the full stage, rushing and twirling, with their Spanish fans and toreador capes. ¡Ole!”
Tickets are $26-$46; free parking is available. To order, call 847-673-6300 or visit www.northshorecenter.org. For group rates, call 773-327-3778. A portion of the proceeds for the June 21 performance will go to benefit Dance For Life. There will also be a free pre-performance talk-back and reception with Dame Libby and members of Ensemble Español, beginning at 6 p.m. For more information call Ensemble Espanol at 773-442-5916 or visit www.EnsembleEspanol.org/festivals.
Also is June is the 2013 Improvisation Fest presented by The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago in collaboration with Links Hall.
Admission is free to the festival’s June 7 discussion at The Dance Center on 1306 S. Michigan Ave. in Chicago. Tickets for Jennifer Monson’s Living Dance Archive on Thursday, June 6 at 8 p.m. at The Dance Center are $15 ($5 for students) and are available by calling 312-369-8330. Visit www.linkshall.org for tickets to the 7 p.m. performance on Monday, June 3, at Chicago’s Links Hall at Constellation, 3111 N. Western Avenue.
The Contact Improvisation Workshop/Jam with Daniel Halkin on June 4 is $5 ($3 for students); the rest of the fest’s workshops are $60 each ($30 for students) and offer instruction by Susan Sgorbati on June 4-5, Peter Schmitz on June 6, and Jennifer Monson on June 7. All workshops take place at the Dance Center. To register, call 312-369-8330.
“The 2013 Improvisation Fest seeks to remind us of the interconnectedness that blurs the boundaries we perceive,” notes curator Lisa Gonzales. “Furthering the appreciation of improvisation, engaging the relationship between dancing bodies, art-making and the natural (and not-so-natural) world, as well as celebrating the many improvisation practitioners in Chicago and around the Midwest are important components of the festival.”