Chicago’s Deeply Rooted Dance Theater Celebrates Legacy of Co-Founders with Annual Spring Showcase

Join the Celebration of Dance Education and Artistic Excellence on May 6th at the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts!

Chicago’s celebrated professional dance company, Deeply Rooted Dance Theater, is set to host its Annual Dance Education Spring Showcase. This year’s event is a tribute to the company’s co-founders, Kevin Iega Jeff and Gary Abbott, who have been instrumental in its success for over 25 years. The showcase will take place on Saturday, May 6, at the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts on 915 E. 60th Street, Chicago. Tickets and additional details regarding the event by accessing their official website.

The evening’s program commences with a pre-show talk titled “Meet the Founders,” featuring Abbott and Jeff for ticket holders attending the performance and pre-show. The performance, which starts at 7 p.m., will feature the company’s professional dancers and participants from Deeply Rooted’s Dance Education programs, including the Men Moving, Youth Ensemble, and Mature H.O.T. Women. The program seeks to pay tribute to the founders’ legacy, highlighting Deeply Rooted’s journey from its debut in 1996 to its present status as a globally acclaimed professional dance company. 

Deeply Rooted’s Artistic Director, Nicole Clarke-Springer, emphasizes the importance of this event, stating, “This event honors our origins by celebrating our co-founders, Kevin Iega Jeff and Gary Abbott, while looking towards the future with our Dance Education programs, which aim to train the next generation of professional dancers.” Clarke-Springer also acknowledged the positive impact that working with Abbott and Jeff has had on her personal and professional growth as an artist and leader.

Deeply Rooted Dance Theater’s Dance Education programs, led by the company’s artistic staff and occasional guest artists, provide training in African, modern, and ballet dance techniques at two locations: Ballet Chicago on 17 North State Street and the Mayfair Arts Center on 8701 South Bennett Avenue. The programs include the Youth Ensemble, catering to pre-professional dancers between the ages of 12-18, Mature H.O.T. Women, designed for women aged 25 and above who prioritize their health, optimism, and triumph, and Men Moving, which offers a supportive movement environment for men seeking to improve their overall health. Additionally, the Summer Dance Intensive program provides a rigorous four-to-six-week training curriculum, offering opportunities to learn the company’s repertory through workshops and performances. 

Furthermore, the programs feature The Continuum, a guided conversation series on self-awareness and personal growth, informed by each participant’s creativity and artistic process. Deeply Rooted Dance Theater merges classical, modern, American, and African-American traditions of dance and storytelling, reimagining and diversifying the aesthetics of contemporary dance. Their unwavering pursuit of excellence demonstrates the transformative power of art and beauty, influencing cultural enrichment in Chicago and on the global stage. Deeply Rooted Dance Theater merges diverse dance traditions including modern, ballet, and African dance, collaborating with highly acclaimed choreographers to bring contemporary voices and themes to their performances.

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