MIAMI – The South Miami-Dade Cultural
Arts Center (SMDCAC) presents Evidence, A Dance Company on
Saturday, February 18 at 8pm. The Center is located at 10950
SW 211 Street in Cutler Bay, FL. Tickets are $25, $15, $10
www.CultureShockmiami.com for ages 13-22). $5 off
orchestra level seats for students seniors and active
military service members. For tickets call 786-573-5300 or
visit www.smdcac.org .
Founded in Brooklyn, New York in 1985, the dance company
Evidence focuses on the seamless fusion of traditional
African dance with contemporary choreography and spoken
word. The company’s work provides a unique view of human
struggles, tragedies and triumphs. Artistic Director Ronald
K. Brown uses movement as a way to reinforce the importance
of community in African American culture and to acquaint
audiences with the beauty of traditional African forms and
rhythms. A highlight of the evening will be a new work On
Earth Together, inspired by the music of Stevie Wonder. In
addition to On Earth Together, the program will feature two
other dances by Brown, Ife: My Heart and Upside Down.
IFE/My Heart looks at the parallel
journey of three families towards one destination, love/IFE.
Performers are dressed in costumes representing the United
States, Cuba and West Africa. The piece implores audience
members to release their hearts in response to the conflicts
and conditions in the world and in personal relationships.
The dance was commissioned by the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater
and premiered in 2005.
Upside Down begins with the
premonition of community mourning. The dance continues as a
race that reflects the impetus that drives the individual
towards their destiny. The score begins with Malian vocalist
Oumou Sangare’s “Kun Fe Ko” (The Uncertainty of Things), a
song which says the destiny of a child is in God’s hands.
The remainder of Upside Down is set to Fela Kuti’s song of
the same title, which tells the story of chaos and
corruption, because of the abuse of power and the
ever-strong desire for wealth. The dance uses the loss of a
community member as a rite and calls for solidarity.
On Earth Together is a testimony and commitment to making
the world a better place. Stevie Wonder’s music is the focus
and inspiration behind this piece, which allows dancers to
intimately express relationships between individuals and the
world at large.
The South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts
Center is collaborating with Artistic Director Ronald K.
Brown and his company members on several community outreach
experiences during their four-day residency in Miami.
Activities are planned Wednesday, February 15 – Friday,
February 17 in advance of the group’s highly anticipated
public performance on the evening of Saturday, February 18.
A collaborative dance workshop at
SMDCAC is planned for the students of Robert Russa Moton
Elementary (RR Moton) and Perrine Elementary magnet schools
(Feb. 16). The dance students of Miami Dade College’s
Kendall Campus are participating in a special master class
with Ronald K. Brown on campus (Feb. 16). SMDCAC is
partnering with the city of Cutler Bay to offer an
intergenerational dance workshop experience to the students
of the Arthur & Polly Mays 6-12 Conservatory and the senior
citizens of Cutler Bay (Feb. 15 &17). Both groups will work
together for two days in a creative dance experience that
will allow both groups to socialize in a unique way.
The South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts
Center is managed by the Miami-Dade County Department of
Cultural Affairs, with funding support from the Office of
the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County
Commissioners. The Center is dedicated to presenting and
supporting arts and culture and providing access to the arts
to the entire Miami-Dade County community.
About Ronald K. Brown
Brooklyn-born RONALD K. BROWN founded the New York-based
contemporary dance company EVIDENCE, A DANCE COMPANY in
1985. In addition to his work with EVIDENCE, Brown has
created work for the African American Dance Ensemble,
Philadanco, Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble, Dayton
Contemporary Dance Company, Alvin Ailey American Dance
Theater (Grace in 1999 and Serving Nia in 2001, IFE/My Heart
2005), Ailey II, Cinque Folkloric Dance theater, Jennifer
Muller/The Works, and Jeune Ballet d’Afrique Noire. He has
collaborated with such artists as composer/designer Wunmi
Olaiya, the late writer Craig G. Harris, director Ernie
McClintock’s Jazz Actors Theater, choreographers Patricia
Hoffbauer and Rokiya Kone, and composers Robert Een, Oliver
Lake, Bernadette Speech, David Simons, and Don Meissner.
Brown has received numerous awards and fellowships including
a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship in Choreography,
a National Endowment for the Arts Choreographer’s
Fellowship, a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in
choreography, a New York Dance and Performance Award
(Bessie), a Black Theater Alliance Award, the American Dance
Festival Humphrey/Weidman/Limón Award, and fellowships from
the Edward and Sally van Lier Fund.
In addition, Brown was named Def Dance
Jam Workshop Mentor of the Year (2000). In 2003, Ron
received an AUDELCO (Black Theatre Award) for his
choreography for Crowns: Portraits of Black Women in Church
Hats, originally produced by the McCarter Theater and
presented off-Broadway in 2003. In 2006, Ron received the
U.S.A. Artists Rose Fellowship award.
About the Building
South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center serves as a showcase
for the performing and media arts, welcoming people from all
backgrounds and economic means. The facility includes 966
seat state-of-the- art theater, which features a fly tower,
orchestra pit, front of house spaces (box office, lobby,
concessions, etc.) and back of house support spaces
(dressing rooms, storage and work areas, administrative
offices, etc.). The site also includes an activities
building which houses lab / experimental theaters, and may
be used for classrooms, rehearsals, and small-scale
performances. A beautiful outdoor plaza allows for
festivals, art shows, and other outdoor activities. The
concert lawn “back yard” slopes to the Black Creek Canal,
and can host outdoor concerts, performances and events.
The Miami-Dade County Department of
Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council develop
cultural excellence, diversity and participation throughout
Miami-Dade County by strategically creating and promoting
opportunities for artists and cultural organizations, and
our residents and visitors who are their audiences. The
Department directs the Art in Public Places program and its
board, the Art in Public Places Trust, commissioning,
curating, maintaining and promoting the County’s
award-winning public art collection. Through staff, board
and programmatic resources, the Department, the Council and
the Trust promote, coordinate and support Miami-Dade
County’s more than 1,000 not-for-profit cultural
organizations as well as thousands of resident artists
through grants, technical assistance, public information and
interactive community planning. The Department receives
funding through the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of
County Commissioners, The Children’s Trust, the National
Endowment for the Arts, the State of Florida through the
Florida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs
and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture, and the John S.
and James L. Knight Foundation. Other support and services
are provided by TicketWeb for the Culture Shock Miami
program, the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau,
the South Florida Cultural Consortium and the Tourist