Spring Arts Preview 2014: Dance

The new music and dance spectacular created by the producers and director of "Riverdance," makes its East Coast debut in a limited engagement at Boston’s Wang Theatre, playing March 26 through April 6. (Credit (c) Riverdream Productions Ltd. / J.Byrne)
The new music and dance spectacular created by the producers and director of “Riverdance,” makes its East Coast debut in a limited engagement at Boston’s Wang Theatre, playing March 26 through April 6. (Credit (c) Riverdream Productions Ltd. / J.Byrne)

The birds are chirping, grass is growing, and believe you us, people are dancing. Let writer Matthew Dinaro be your guide to the best body movement Boston’s got to offer this spring.

‘I Am Here Now’
March 21 and 23
The Dance Complex
536 Mass. Ave., Cambridge
$15-$20, 781-738-3272
www.zoedance.org

This multimedia production from Zoe Dance, featuring several new members performing for the first time, explores a phenomenon of modern life familiar to anyone who’s taken a meditation class: namely, our movement throughout the day from one existential distraction to another, affording us precious little time for peace and reflection. No chance to simply sit and say, “I am here now.”

‘Cinderella’
Through March 23
Boston Opera House
529 Washington St., Boston
$29-$137, 617-695-6955
www.bostonballet.org

The Boston Ballet performs Prokofiev’s “Cinderella,” with choreography by Sir Frederick Ashton, for the first time this spring and it’s done up in a wonderfully grandiose 18th century style. The story itself is said to date back to Rhodopis, a Greek courtesan in the 6th century B.C.E. who, according to legend, was made queen of Egypt. Cinderella’s a much prettier name.

‘Heartbeat of Home’
March 26 through April 6
Citi Wang Theater
270 Tremont St., Boston
$35-$109, 800-745-3000
www.ticketmaster.com

The “Riverdance” folks are back again with their latest production, which integrates Latin and Afro-Cuban dance and music into their Irish step dance idiom. For some, it may represent an almost unrecognizable departure from traditional step dance but it’s probably better to think of it as representing a new tradition — that of globally conscious artistic syncretism, from which infinite possibilities flow.

‘BodyTraffic’
April 11 and April 12
Institute of Contemporary Art
100 Northern Ave., Boston
$40, 617-876-4275
www.worldmusic.org

No, this isn’t the kind of body traffic one experiences at Park Street during rush hour — that isn’t fun at all. This is a hot young dance company from Los Angeles with a saucy streak, a strong theatrical element and an extremely eclectic musical and choreographic taste — one open, it seems, to virtually anything and with a set of dancers ready for all of it.

‘Limitless’
April 16 through April 19
Boston Conservatory Theater
31 Hemenway St., Boston
$25-$30, 617-912-9222
www.bostonconservatory.edu

Boston Conservatory presents a program including Mark Morris’ humorous piece “Canonic 3/4 Studies” and Karole Armitage’s “Rave,” with its eclectic mix of traditional dance, capoeira, vogueing and other styles. Also on the bill: works by the Conservatory’s own Tommy Neblett, known locally for his work with Prometheus Dance and its Elders Ensemble and Dwight Rhoden of Complexions Dance Company.

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
May 1 through May 4
Citi Wang Theater
270 Tremont St., Boston
$30-$70, 800-745-3000
www.ticketmaster.com

Considering their current top brass status, it’s funny to think Alvin Ailey and his original troupe did their first tours in the early ‘60s in a station wagon. They would go on to tour the world, at the behest of President John F. Kennedy, as ambassadors of American culture. Since Ailey’s death in 1989, they’ve continued to build on his legacy with great success.

‘Pricked’
May 8 through May 18
Boston Opera House
529 Washington St., Boston
$29-$137, 617-695-6955
www.bostonballet.org

The Boston Ballet presents three modern works, two of which see their American debut with this show: Petr Zuska’s “D.M.J. 1953–1977,” Alexander Ekman’s “Cacti” and Harold Lander’s “Etudes.” Why is the program called “Pricked”? It may reference both the roses used as props in “D.M.J. 1953-1977” and the titular plant of “Cacti” — beyond that, you’re on your own.

‘Acis and Galatea’
May 15 through May 18
Citi Shubert Theater
265 Tremont St., Boston
$35-$110, 866-348-9738
www.citicenter.org

Mark Morris Dance Group teams up with the Handel and Haydn Society for this presentation of Mozart’s version of Handel’s opera, with set designs by Andrianne Lobel, costume design by Isaac Mizrahi and lighting design by Michael Chybowski. In other words, you’ll be seeing the creation of a bona fide artistic supergroup — a high art highlight of the season.



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