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Paula Josa-Jones performace works to perform at Bates Dance Festival

Paula Josa-Jones Performance Works will perform in concert at the Bates Dance Festival, Northern New England’s leading contemporary dance presenting and training program, at 8 p.m. July 29, in Schaeffer Theatre, 305 College St.

Paula Josa-Jones Performance Works is a Boston-based company of six dancers that has gained a national reputation for risk-taking and adventurous dance theater. Josa-Jones has been called “one of the country’s leading choreographic conceptualists” by The Boston Globe. The Village Voice describes her work as “powerful, eccentric and surreal.” She creates theatrical works that combine rich imagery, virtuosic movement, evocative visual designs and an idiosyncratic use of music.

For the Bates Dance Festival engagement, Josa-Jones presents a new solo and group work, as well as a re-staged version of her acclaimed 1996 work “The Yellow Wallpaper,” a study based on early feminist writings about a young woman’s descent into madness.

Tickets for the performances are priced at $12 and $8 (for full-time students and seniors) and can be purchased at the door or in advance by calling 207-786-6161.

Dance historian and critic Suzanne Carbonneau will deliver a pre-performance talk on Josa-Jones’ work, free and open to the public, at 7:15 p.m. July 29 in Schaeffer Theatre. The lecture is part of educational program of the Bates Dance Festival, “Inside Dance,” which is funded in part by the Maine Humanities Council.

Since 1985, Paula Josa-Jones Performance Works has carried her audiences to the “borders” of gender, sexuality, age, humanness and culture. Josa-Jones has produced more than 30 works of dance theater and created several works for video, often collaborating with visual and media artists. At the core of her work is a fascination with the ways individuals are fed, starved and consumed by habits and relationships. Her work with African dance master Charles Moore and Eiko & Koma helped her develop a form of visually charged dance theater built on the sensuous experience of the body as landscape and source for movement, image and voice.

Paula Josa-Jones has received two consecutive two-year choreography fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Her teaching work in Mexico from 1993-96 was supported by the NEA United States/Mexico Cultural Exchange Fellowship and Fund for Culture. She is the recipient of two New Forms grants from the New England Foundation for the Arts, and an Artists Foundation Fellowship in Interarts for her video dance collaborations with Vin Grabill.

The company has received commissions from the Joyce Theater and Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors in New York, Jacob’s Pillow and Dance Umbrella in Massachusetts, and the Flynn Theater in Vermont.

As a master teacher whose classes focus on composition, improvisation and the integration of voice and movement, Josa-Jones has taught in the dance program at Tufts University, and in the opera department at Boston University. She has been in residence at Performance Space 122 (New York), Dance Umbrella (London and Boston), Yellow Springs Institute (Philadelphia) and Tangents, Inc. (Montreal).

In addition to its critically acclaimed mainstage performance series of 17 concerts, the festival offers two intensive training programs, one for adults and one for younger dancers. For more information, or to request a brochure, call the Bates Dance Festival at 207-786-6381.

The Bates Dance Festival receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New England Foundation for the Arts, the Maine Humanities Council, the Maine Arts Commission, Harkness Foundations for Dance, Capezio Ballet Makers Dance Foundation, the Bingham Betterment Fund, G.G. Monks Foundation, the Shapiro Family Foundation, the Sequoia Foundation, Tom’s of Maine, LEF Foundation, L.L. Bean, Portland Newspapers, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Androscoggin Savings Bank, Mechanics Savings Bank, Liberty Mutual Insurance and People’s Heritage Bank.



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