HUDSON HALL INVITES THE COMMUNITY TO A FREE OPEN REHEARSAL OF DANCE OF THE AGES (1938): A CREATIVE RECONSTRUCTION BY ADAM WEINERT AND HIS DANCERS | The Scene

HUDSON HALL INVITES THE COMMUNITY TO A FREE OPEN REHEARSAL OF

DANCE OF THE AGES (1938): A CREATIVE RECONSTRUCTION

BY ADAM WEINERT AND HIS DANCERS

HUDSON — “The Air Section” featuring Alex McBride. Photo by Christopher Duggan, Courtesy of Jacob’s Pillow

DANCE OF THE AGES: A CREATIVE RECONSTRUCTION

Adam Weinert & His Dancers

Tuesday, June 21 at 5:30 pm

Hudson Hall at the historic Hudson Opera House

327 Warren Street, Hudson NY

HUDSON — Hudson Hall invites the public to a free open rehearsal of Dance of the Ages (1938), Adam Weinert’s creative reconstruction of Ted Shawn’s iconic dance piece on Tuesday, June 21 at 5:30pm. Weinert’s reconstruction was first presented at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in 2018 and was followed by performances at the ICA Miami and The Soundscape Park at the New World Center in 2022. The open rehearsal at Hudson Hall offers audiences aa behind-the-scenes look at the Historic work before it heads to the 2022 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. Free tickets can be reserved at hudsonhall.org.

Ted Shawn’s Dance of the Ages (1938) is based on the radical queer text Towards Democracy (1833) by Edward Carpenter and was Shawn’s response to the rise of fascism around the world. Shawn considered Dance of the Ages to be the summit of his achievements as a choreographer. It was the first evening length modern dance ever presented, and one of the last creations he built for The Men Dancers. No less relevant today, Weinert and his dancers are excited to bring this history back to life with this reconstruction.

For Shawn, Dance of the Ages was dream work, a radical democratic space that understood queer masculinity and artistry not as a threat, but as integral to the functioning of society. Shawn himself was haunted by the threat of violence while choreographing the piece. His preoccupation with the embodied presentation of masculinity on stage sits within a much larger systemic and frequently terrifying violence rendered on the bodies of queer people that still exists today. It was also first performed against the shadow of World War I and in the agonizing ramp up to World War II. According to Weinert: “This work is both radically subversive and deeply patriotic. Bringing this work back is thrilling, poignant and timely.”

Weinert’s reconstruction of Dance of the Ages (1938) is an inaugural commission by ICA Miami’s Culture Club membership group supporting LGBTQIA+ representation in the arts as well as a 2021 Knight Arts Challenge Winner. This creative reconstruction was also made possible by generous support from The Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, The Lake Placid Center for the Arts, Hudson Hall, and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Archival photography is provided courtesy of the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Archives.

Adam Weinert is a choreographer, researcher and gardener based in Hudson, NY. He has produced and choreographed two award-winning dance lms screened nationally and abroad, and his performance works have toured to four continents including a number of non-traditional dance venues such as the Museum of Modern Art, The Tate Britain Museum, and The Tate Modern Museum. Adam studied at Vassar College, The Juilliard School, and New York University, where he earned a master’s degree under the tutelage of André Lepecki. He danced with The Metropolitan Opera Ballet Company, The Mark Morris Dance Group, and Shen Wei Dance Arts. In addition to his performance work, Adam has been published in the New York Times, PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art and the Juilliard Journal. He was named a “Dance Renegade” by Dance Magazine, awarded the Léo Bronstein Award from New York University, and the Hector Zaraspe Prize for Outstanding Choreography from The Juilliard School. His work has been called “impressive, strange, a puzzle you want to solve” by the New York Times.

In 2020 Adam was named a Bessie Honoree for his work reconstructing and interrogating the choreographic legacy of modern dance pioneer Ted Shawn. That same year, he launched Jacob’s Garden, a working farm, living archive and participatory piece of choreography on the campus of the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. His ongoing research includes teasing out the sensual connectivity between performance, agriculture, nourishment and community. For more information, visit www.jacobsgarden.org.

ABOUT TED SHAWN (1891-1972)

Ted Shawn (born Edwin Myers Shawn) was one of the first notable male pioneers of American modern dance. Along with creating the Danishawn School with former wife Ruth St. Denis, he was also responsible for the creation of the well-known all-male company Ted Shawn and His Men Dancers. With his innovative ideas of masculine movement, he was one of the most influential choreographers and dancers of his day. He was also the founder and creator of Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Massachusetts, and was knighted by the King of Denmark for his efforts on behalf of the Royal Danish Ballet.

Ted Shawn and His Men Dancers performing Dance of the Ages (1938). Courtesy of Jacob’s Pillow Archives

Hudson Hall (www.hudsonhall.org) is a cultural beacon in the Hudson Valley, offering a dynamic year-round schedule of music, theater, dance, literature, exhibitions, workshops for youth and adults, as well as family programs and large- scale community events such as Winter Walk. Located in a historic landmark that houses New York State’s oldest surviving theater, Hudson Hall underwent a full restoration and reopened to the public in April 2017 for the first time in over 55 years. In 2019, through an extensive program encompassing live performance, art exhibitions, city-wide festivals, free community events and workshops, Hudson Hall served an audience of 50,000 and employed over 400 artists and skilled technicians, making it a valuable contributor to Columbia County’s $8 million creative economy. Approximately 70% of Hudson Hall’s programs are free of charge or subsidized to ensure equitable access to the arts.

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