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Dance companies converge on the Alex Theatre

Eight groups will perform different styles on stage in 'Celebrate Dance.'

March 05, 2014|By Laura Tate
  • The Solevita Dance Company performs as part of "Celebrate Dance 2014" at the Alex Theatre in Glendale on Saturday, March 8, 2014.
The Solevita Dance Company performs as part of "Celebrate… (Courtesy of Celebrate…)

Dance lovers will be treated to multifaceted styles of the art March 8 at the Glendale Alex Theatre as "Celebrate Dance," in its ninth year, brings together dance companies from throughout California to perform for one night only. And for the first time, tap and live music will be included.

Eight dance companies will perform dance styles from urban tap and contemporary jazz, to new wave and ultra modern dance. As "Celebrate Dance" Executive Producer Jamie Nichols does each year, several new companies will be introduced with this year's performance, to join returning dance companies — SoleVita Dance Company and Mizerany Dance.

Artistic Director Adam Parson brings his Commonality Dance Company to "Celebrate Dance." The group was formed in 2002 "out of the necessity to be able to perform," Parson said in a telephone interview.

Parson put together his company with dancers from his classes at the Edge Performing Arts Center in Los Angeles after a year and a half of teaching there. "I realized they were really good dancers. And I thought, maybe I can do this. I can create a company and use these dancers. If they're not working, they can express their talents."

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Parson, who was born in Nairobi, Kenya, didn't start his career life as a dancer. He was working as a computer programmer and accountant in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington D.C. while studying to be a pastry chef when one day his sister asked him to drop a friend at dance class.

"[I see] all these girls thrown in the air, guys twisting and turning ... I had never seen dance live ... and I thought, 'Oh my god!' Literally, my energy clicked into dance."

Parson's first job was as the Blue Power Ranger in the popular live tour, and he went on to dance in and choreograph for stage, film and TV (he's choreographed for Australia's "So You Think You Can Dance"), as well as performed at the White House for President Bill Clinton.

Parson has taken his dance company Commonality around the globe, performing jazz, ballet, lyrical and world dance. For the March 8 performance of "Celebrate Dance," the company will perform "NeXuS6/4," an excerpt from a larger show, which Parson said was inspired by the movie "Blade Runner," and explores "human-android relationships."

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