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Company Brings New Program That Brilliantly Blends Flamenco, Classical, and Contemporary Forms of Dance

Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater – October 6, 2017

“Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater is still able to excavate new and interesting material after 41 years of making dances.” – Chicago Tribune

“An ensemble of extraordinarily beautiful, passionate, superbly skilled dancers … operating at the very top of their game.” – Chicago Sun-Times

Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater returns to the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University on Friday, October 6, with a new program that brilliantly blends flamenco, classical, contemporary, and traditional forms of dance. The company opens the Auditorium Theatre’s 2017-18 “Made in Chicago” Dance Series.

“As the Theatre for the People, we aim to highlight cultural traditions from around the world while also presenting the best artistic companies from Chicago,” says Tania Castroverde Moskalenko, Auditorium Theatre CEO. “Ensemble Español ties the Chicago dance community to the traditions of Spain, and we are thrilled to have them return to our historic stage.”

“We are honored and excited to return to the Auditorium Theatre,” says Jorge Perez, executive director of Ensemble Español. “The Ensemble is truly grateful for this opportunity to celebrate Chicago’s diverse dance culture via the ‘Made in Chicago’ Dance Series. Just like our city, our dancers reflect a mosaic of world cultures, all in the name of presenting traditional and contemporary forms of Spanish dance and music. ¡Ole!

The October 6 program includes four critically acclaimed pieces: Iroko, a full-ensemble piece that modernizes flamenco dance, choreographed by Angel Rojas and Carlos Rodriguez of the Nuevo Ballet Madrid and called “virtuosic” by the Chicago Sun-Times; Defalla, Fuera de la Caja (Defalla, Out of the Box), Angel Rojas’ contemporary take on a portion of the classic ballet The Three-Cornered Hat (originally performed at the Auditorium Theatre in the 1930s by Serghei Diaghilev’s Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo), set to the music of La Vide Breve (The Brief Life) by Manuel de Falla; Ecos de España, a 1983 work by Ensemble Español founder Dame Libby Komaiko, set to Spanish folk music and inspired by the paintings of Francisco de Goya; and Bolero, Ensemble Español’s signature work and Komaiko’s masterpiece, set to the titular score by Ravel.

In addition to the evening performance, Ensemble Español performs as part of the Auditorium Theatre’s Student Matinee Series on October 6 at 11AM. The educational program Tales of Spain allows K-12 students to experience the traditions of Spanish dance and music, from classical dances to folklore to flamenco.

Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2016. Under the leadership of company founder Dame Libby Komaiko, artistic director Irma Suarez Ruiz, and executive director Jorge Perez, the company is internationally recognized for its promotion of Spanish dance culture in all forms. In 1982, Komaiko became the first American artist in history to be awarded the “Lazo de Dama” (Ribbon of the Dame) by His Majesty Don Juan Carlos I, King of Spain, for her artistic, cultural, and educational work throughout the United States. President Barack Obama congratulated the company in 2011 for their work in presenting Spanish dance culture to communities in Chicago and around the world. Ensemble Español has been in residence at Northeastern Illinois University since 1976.

CIBC – Student Matinee Sponsor

Event Information

Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater
Friday, October 6 | 11AM – One hour student matinee performance
Friday, October 6 | 7:30PM

Tickets start at $29 and are available online at AuditoriumTheatre.org, by phone at 312.341.2300, or in person at the Auditorium Theatre Box Office (50 E Congress Parkway). Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater is part of the “Made in Chicago” Dance Series, which offers a 30% discounted subscription. The evening may also be added to the Select Your Own subscription, discounted at 20-25%. Discounts available for groups of 10+.

Auditorium Theatre’s 2017-18 Season Upcoming Performances

October 6: Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater

October 18-29: The Joffrey Ballet – Giselle

October 30: Hillary Clinton Live

November 1: David Sedaris

November 4: Who Tells Your Story? A Collaboration with Barrel of Monkeys

November 4: Pedro Fernández

November 12: A Golden Celebration of Dance

November 17: Ella & Lena: The Ladies and Their Music

November 18: The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses

November 21: Mayday

About The Auditorium Theatre

The Auditorium Theatre, located at 50 E Congress Pkwy in Chicago, is an Illinois, not-for-profit organization committed to presenting the finest in international, cultural, community, and educational programming to all of Chicago and beyond as The Theatre for the People. The organization is also committed to the continued restoration and preservation of the National Historic Landmark.

The Auditorium Theatre 2017-18 Season is made possible in part with support from the MacArthur Foundation and the Palmer House Hilton. Michigan Avenue is the official magazine sponsor. For more information about programming, volunteer, and donor opportunities or theatre tours, call 312.341.2310 or visit AuditoriumTheatre.org. For a complete listing of events at the Auditorium Theatre, please click here.

Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater in Bolero, photo by Joe Davis. | Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater in Ecos de España, photo by Joe Davis. | Auditorium Theatre, photo by Lucio Vergara.
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