America’s Stage 
North Carolina hosts the American Dance Festival

Courtesy Pilobolus/Grant Haverson

The Pilobolus dance company will return to the American Dance Festival this summer.

Summer sizzles in Durham, North Carolina—and not just because of the weather. Each June, the city attracts some of the world’s most innovative modern dance companies, whose members kick up the heat in a series of performances at the American Dance Festival (ADF).

On stark stages flooded with dramatic lighting, dancers leap and skip in bare feet, twisting and contorting their lithe bodies with range and emotion to the accompaniment of classical violin and piano, hip-hop or pop, and a cacophony of synthesized notes. 

“The diversity of work is so wide that it can appeal to very different kinds of audiences,” explains Jodee Nimerichter, ADF director. “It’s like going to Baskin-Robbins. It’s all ice cream but there are many different flavors. You might not like every flavor, but you really like ice cream, so you come back and try it again and again.”

This year’s fest features the ADF debut of Camille A. Brown, an award-winning New York–based performer and choreographer, and the return of distinguished favorites like Pilobolus, a dance company renowned for its shape-shifting transformations especially noted at its performance at the 2007 Academy Awards.

Complementing the performances are free community events, including children’s shows, behind-the-scenes tours, and the free International Screendance Festival, showing a selection of short artistic films that blend dance and cinema.

For modern dance enthusiasts or just the merely curious, the ADF is bound to engage, delight, and even provoke, but, above all, provide an experience that’s anything but ordinary.

If You Go
The 2013 American Dance Festival takes place June 13–July 27. Tickets go on sale in May through their website, from the individual venues, or by calling 1-919-684-4444 or 1-919-680-2787. $18–$60. For general questions, call 1-919-684-6402 or go to the American Dance Festival website.

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