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American Dance Machine for the 21st Century, at The Joyce Theater
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American Dance Machine for the 21st Century, at The Joyce Theater

- Onstage with the Dancers: Backstage with the Playwrights


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The Joyce Foundation
Presents:
American Dance Machine
For the 21st Century
www.adm21.org

Nikki Feirt Atkins, Founder/Producing Artistic Director
Aldo Scrofani, Exec. Producer
Wayne Cilento, Director

Cast:
Claire Camp, Chloë Campbell, Rick Faugno, Lori Ann Ferreri
Shonica Gooden, Susie Gorman, Rachel Guest, Tyler Hanes
Nick Kepley, David Paul Kidder, Marty Lawson, Paloma Garcia-Lee
Jess LeProtto, Cathy Lyn, Skye Mattox, Nicholas Palmquist
Georgina Pazcoguin, Tera-Lee Pollin, Justin Prescott, Amy Ruggiero
Tommy Scrivens, Mikey Winslow

At
The Joyce Theater
www.joyce.org
175 Eighth Avenue
New York, NY 10011
212.242.0800

Scenic Designer: Edward Pierce
Costume Designer: David C. Woolard
Lighting Designer: David Grill
Sound Designer: Matt Kraus
Projection/Video Designer: Batwin + Robin Productions
Music Director: Eugene Gwozdz
Associate Director: Adam Murray
General Management: DR Theatrical Management
Advertising: DR Advertising
Press: Keith Sherman & Associates, Inc.

Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
December 24, 2015 Matinee


What a delightful Christmas Eve afternoon surprise! I had missed American Dance Machine last year in its debut at The Joyce and was determined to see it this year. For those aficionados of Broadway song and dance musicals, even shows with a dance within a play, including bits of ballet, modern, and tap, American Dance Machine (for the 21st Century) has it all, in upbeat, ebullient vivacity. No fewer than eighteen individual numbers are presented, with scenic, projected and special effect backdrops, live orchestra conducted by Eugene Gwozdz, and a solo by a favorite ballerina, Georgina Pazcoguin, a Soloist with New York City Ballet. The expansive list of Broadway numbers, by renowned choreographers, such as Jerome Robbins, Agnes de Mille, Bob Fosse, Michael Bennett, Tommy Tune, Warren Carlyle, Susan Stroman, Gene Kelly, and this show’s director, Wayne Cilento, was astounding. There was even a boxing number. “Fight from Golden Boy”, choreographed by Donald McKayle. Rick Faugno bounced about with boxing gloves, backed by Justin Prescott and Tyler Haynes.

Among the highlights, too numerous to detail, were the virtuosic and bracing “Gotta Dance” from Singin’ in the Rain, choreographed by Gene Kelly, performed by Paloma Garcia-Lee and Mr. Faugno, the jazzy and urban “Cool” from West Side Story, choreographed by Jerome Robbins, led by Amy Ruggiero and Mikey Winslow, and “The Music and the Mirror”, danced by Lori Ann Ferreri, along with the goose-bump-inducing “A Chorus Line Medley”, led by Tyler Haynes, both from A Chorus Line, choreographed by Michael Bennett. The rambunctious and rhythmic “Slap That Bass” from Crazy For You, choreographed by Susan Stroman and led by Marty Lawson, had the women standing behind cords that men play, turning women into basses. Tommy Tune’s choreography for “We’ll Take a Glass Together” from Grand Hotel was led by Tyler Haynes and Mikey Winslow. It should be noted here that the program notes were severely limited, with no head shots of each performer, many of whom had names that could be confused for male or female, so it was almost impossible to know who was dancing, as cast notes often listed dual dancers, taking turns for the entire run.

The “Dream Ballet” from Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!, choreographed by Agnes de Mille, was the pièce de résistance, led by Amy Ruggiero, Marty Lawson, and Nicholas Palmquist. Giant sunsets shifted on the backdrop with Ms. Ruggiero jumping onto Mr. Lawson’s torso in vibrant, energetic joy. I saw some Martha Graham evocations in rapidly crossing hand motion, a modern dance language of its own. Ms. Pazcoguin’s “The White Cat Solo” from Cats, choreographed by Gillian Lynne, hinted at the dance of The White Cat and Puss in Boots in The Sleeping Beauty ballet, sexy, sassy, sinewy. A whole Company number, “Coffee Break” from How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, had a New York skyline, office desks, and comically adorable tune. I remembered this catchy number and immediately wanted to see that whole show again.

It should also be noted that the vocal power and range, as well as dance talent, of this cast was impressive and stunning. Rick Faugno’s performances in the boxing number from Golden Boy, and especially his song and dance routine in “Gotta Dance” with Paloma Garcia-Lee, were breakout roles, and I expect to see more of this actor/dancer/singer on the big stage soon. In fact, I expect to see many of these fine ensemble performers in upcoming shows, with their outsized charm and virtuosity. Kudos to Wayne Cilento for such precise and dynamic direction. Kudos to all the choreographers and composers represented in this revue of the best of Broadway, and kudos to today’s stunning cast.



Paloma Garcia-Lee and Rick Faugno
of American Dance Machine
in “Gotta Dance” from Singin’ in the Rain
Courtesy of Christopher Duggan




Mikey Winslow, Tyler Hanes, and
The Company of American Dance Machine
in “We’ll Take a Glass Together” from Grand Hotel
Courtesy of Christopher Duggan




The Company of American Dance Machine
in “Dream Ballet” from Oklahoma!
Courtesy of Christopher Duggan




The Company of American Dance Machine
in “A Chorus Line Medley”
Courtesy of Christopher Duggan


For more information, contact Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower at zlokower@bestweb.net