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"Mythologies," a new work in 5 parts from Cherylyn Lavagnino Dance

"Mythologies," a new work in 5 parts from Cherylyn Lavagnino Dance


Cherylyn Lavagnino Dance


Paul Taylor Dance Company, Sam Scripps Studio Theater
551 Grand Street
New York, NY 10002


Saturday, November 27, 2021 - 7:00pm
Sunday, November 28, 2021 - 6:00pm



Cherylyn Lavagnino Dance

A New Work in Five Parts

November 27 at 7pm and Nov. 28 at 6pm
at the Paul Taylor Dance Company

Sam Scripps Studio Theater
Inspired by the Stories of Ancient Greece
Non-Traditional Gender Roles Are Explored
Excerpts of Tales of Hopper (2020) to Also Be Shown

$30 General Admission, $20/students with valid student ID
Ticket sales begin on October 10 - Phone: 800-838-3006


After 21 months without live performance, Cherylyn Lavagnino Dance (CLD) will return to New York City November 27 and 28 with the premiere of MYTHOLOGIES (2021), a new dance work inspired by the stories of Ancient Greece. Performances will take place at the Paul Taylor Dance Company Sam Scripps Studio Theater, 551 Grand Street, New York, NY 10002, at 7pm and 6pm respectively. Tickets will be available Oct. 10.

Conceived in 2019, Mythologies is a five-part dance work, consisting of twelve dancers, one violinist, one vocalist, original scores, costuming, and lighting design. Inspired by the stories of Ancient Greece in and around the time of the Trojan War, characters include sensual sirens, ferocious Amazonian warriors, and the devoted Band of Thebes.

Mythologies is an expansion of Lavagnino’s most recent work, Monsters of Grace, which premiered at the Association of Performing Arts Professionals (APAP) conference in January 2020. (See APAP 2020 showcase here.) In 2019, Lavagnino began her choreographic process with five women en pointe, reflecting the Amazonian community of Ancient Greece. She explored how strength, grace, and femininity can co-exist in a single body, using the percussive and ethereal qualities of the pointe shoe. The strength and ability of the women on stage is explored, without losing touch with their intrinsic femininity.

The work has since been expanded. Her further research into Greek history discovered the existence of a group of homosexual male warriors called the Band of Thebes, comprised of 150 male couples whose devotion and excellence made for one of the best armies in Greece. The developing movement with male dancers’ centers around camaraderie and the deeply committed loyalty these warriors held for one another. A partnering section in Mythologies brings the male and female warriors into combative yet ardent coupling. This exploration of non-traditional gender roles continues as an undercurrent throughout.

CLD celebrates the unique qualities and individualism of each company member as this work puts forward a vision of full-bodied, qualified dancers whose varied inner lives and ways of occupying space lend strength and poignancy to their performance, defying stereotypes around what bodies are suited to ballet.

For the November 27 and 28 CLD performances, composers Scott Killian, Jacob Lawson and Carol Lipnik have collaborated on an exciting new score for Mythologies. At once primal, mysterious and atmospheric, the music embodies and supports the dynamic and multi-layered richness of Ms. Lavagnino’s choreography.

November’s two full evening performances will also include excerpts from Tales of Hopper (2020): Sunlight in a Cafeteria, Nighthawks, and Automat. Tales of Hopper, a collaboration between choreographer Cherylyn Lavagnino and composer Martin Bresnick, uses dancers cast as figures plucked from selected Edward Hopper paintings. Human connections are illuminated though gestural movement steeped in subtext, with Bresnick’s original composition for piano, violin, and cello bringing emotional undercurrents to the surface. Tales of Hopper asked each of the dancers to step into the new roles of actor and collaborator in the company’s most character-driven work to date.



Health and Safety Protocols are in accordance with current New York State and CDC guidelines. Proof of vaccination required, with all patrons required to wear a mask while inside the performance facilities. Physical vaccine card, photo of vaccine card, or Excelsior pass accepted upon entry. Proof of a negative Covid test within 72 hours of performance time is required in lieu of vaccination. 


Cherylyn Lavagnino has created over forty works in the past fifteen years, and since 2000 the platform for her choreography has been Cherylyn Lavagnino Dance (CLD). Twelve exceptional artists make up CLD stemming from distinguished backgrounds and professional work experiences such as Twyla Tharp, Bill T Jones/Arnie Zane Company, Jose Limon Dance Foundation, Lucinda Childs, Shen Wei Dance Arts, and John Jaspers. The company supports a Live Music and Dance incentive by collaborating with composers Scott Killian and Martin Bresnick on new works, as well as performing alongside world-renowned musical artists such as Lisa Moore, Elly Toyoda, Ashley Bathgate, and New York City Ballet Orchestra members Derek Ratzenboeck and Cameron Grant. CLD has been presented in New York City and abroad: The New Festival in Beijing, Bryant Park, Danspace Project, The 92nd Street Y, Dance Theater Workshop, Symphony Space, DanceNow/NYC, Jacob’s Pillow, The Yard, Kaatsban International Dance Center, Indianapolis City Ballet, Intermezzo Dance, The Joyce Theatre’s “Evening Stars” series, and the Off the Grid Festival. The company also has a long history of performing in museum and gallery spaces such as Chelsea Art Museum, OK Harris Works of Art, and the James Cohan Gallery. CLD serves annual residencies in Vermont and upstate New York which offer the communities educational outreach enrichment and live performances. The company has been supported by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, the American Music Center’s Live Music for Dance grant, the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s Fund, the NYU Global Research Institute grant, The O'Donnell-Green Music and Dance Foundation, The Harkness Foundation for Dance, The Tisch Dean's Faculty Grant, and receives matching corporate funding.


“Eloquence must be something Lavagnino asks of her dancers. You often feel the movement as it courses through their bodies gently or fiercely. The distortions don’t look like examples of the new virtuosity, and at their best, they seem to proceed from emotional states. The dancers gaze intently at one another and the space, while the choreography bends the ballet choreography to suit whatever possesses them or invades them from the music.”
- Deborah Jowitt, Arts Journal


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