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Lula Washington Dance Theatre hosts 'Stage for Legends' Saturday

Danielle Masterson OW Contributor | 1/25/2018, midnight

Imagine a stage where dance legends from the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre to the Dance Theatre of Harlem converge to perform historic choreography created by esteemed masters to compositions by emerging leaders who push the boundaries of the past and the present.

Well, imagine no more.

The Lula Washington Dance Theatre (LWDT) will host the 30th Anniversary of the International Association of Blacks in Dance Conference and Festival (IABD) from Tuesday, January 23rd to Saturday, January 27th, 2018 at the El Camino College Center for the Arts Marsee Auditorium, 16007 Crenshaw Blvd., Torrance, CA 90506.

IABD is the largest gathering of distinguished African-American dance leaders in the country. Professionals from all over the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia will provide performances, master classes, discussions, auditions and participate in an awards luncheon.

“The Lula Washington Dance Theatre is proud to host this historic and vital event here in Los Angeles for the fourth time,” said Lula Washington. “The conference is hosted in a different city each year. We hosted it in 1992, 2005, 2011, and now 2018.”

The Dayton Contemporary Dance Company will perform the Bessie Award-winning “Rainbow Round My Shoulder” as a tribute to the awe-inspiring choreographer Donald McKayle. The Dance Theatre of Harlem will perform the Ballet titled “Change” choreographed by the revered Dianne McIntyre. “Change” is a trio performance that explores issues of women and race by loosely evoking important female figures from historical times to the present. These performances will be held on Saturday.

Kyle Abraham, leader of Abraham In Motion from New York, is presenting a solo work called “Grey” on Saturday, featuring Marcella Lewis. Lewis began at LWD School and went on to college where she met Kyle and joined his company. “I’m excited to have Marcella back home in Los Angeles, dancing, said Washington. I can’t wait to see her in action.”

“This event is critical because many of the African-American dance pioneers are aging and transitioning,” said Tamica Washington-Miller, Lula Washington’s daughter and the heir apparent of LWDT. “Thus the theme for this year is honoring our legacy, working to make connections to our pioneers and those whose shoulders we stand on today as well as our current dancers who are forging a new generation”

Other performers include Philadanco!, Deeply Rooted Dance Theatre, Ron K. Brown/Evidence Dance Theatre, Forces of Nature Dance Theatre, Lula Washington Dance Theatre, Dallas Black Dance Theatre, and the Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Theatre from Denver.

The International Association of Blacks in Dance Conference has an extensive schedule of events to offer dance enthusiasts. The schedule is as follows:

Thursday Jan. 25, IABD Youth Companies

DADA Ensemble , LA County High School for the Arts, Baltimore Dance Tech, Lula Washington Youth Dance Ensemble.

Friday Jan. 26, Established IABD companies & University Ensembles

Contemporary West Dance Theatre, Elissa Monte Dance, Green Works, Howard University Dance.

Friday Jan. 26, 2018 1pm - 3pm Awards Luncheon

Special Invited Guests: Council President Herb Wesson, Maxine Waters, Karen Bass Mark Ridley-Thomas Honorees: Mathew Rushing, Debbie Allen, Norma Miller, Damito Jo Freeman, Don Martin, Laverne C. Ligon, Theo Jamison, Bernice Boseman

Location: Sheraton LAX Gateway Hotel

Tickets: 323-292-5852 or email: iabd2018.lwdt@gmail.com

Saturday Jan. 27, Performances by Founding Companies

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Dance Theatre of Harlem

Philadanco!, Deeply Rooted Dance Theatre, Ron K. Brown/Evidence Dance Theatre, Forces of Nature Dance Theatre, Lula Washington Dance Theatre,

Dallas Black Dance Theatre, Dayton Contemporary Dance Theatre and Cleo Parker Robinson Dance. Ticket: 323- 292-5852 or email iabd2018lwdt@gmail.com