• new-top-banner-photo.jpg
  • Spring was in the air for Alabama Dance Theatre’s Spring Gala: A Celebration of the Season

    • Share:
    March 09, 2023
    The Alabama Dance Theatre celebrated the Spring of their 36th Season with four spectacular performances of “Spring Gala: A Celebration of the Season''. Seven award-winning choreographers created 12 cutting-edge new works that had something for everyone. 
    Audiences witnessed an evening of classical ballet, jazz, comedy – and a little bit of rock n’ roll. The Spring Gala featured new works from ADT’s resident choreographers Janie Alford, Sara Elyse Sanford, and Jenny Letner and ADT faculty member Jaclyn Speights. Guest choreographers Armando Luna and Ashley McQueen lent two new works to the production, originally created last July during ADT’s two-week summer intensive. 

    Jupiter, created by Mr. Luna was a neoclassical piece set to Mozart’s Symphony No. 41 in C Major, K. 551 which showcased the Senior Company’s strong pointe work and partnering technique to full advantage. Highlighted were Shannon McGaughey, Arrion Rollins, Celeste Herod, Cameron Crawford, Amelia Kate Skala, Morgan Calhoun and Emanuel Wood. The female dancers sparkled in gorgeous silver tutus and tiaras. Ms. McQueen mesmerized the audience in her contemporary piece, Disassembling, which featured the Junior Company dancers. Sara Elyse Sanford created a new contemporary pointe piece in beautiful navy blue flowing costumes, Moonbeams.  A Caucus Race, choreographed by Ms. Speights combined the apprentice company members along with energetic young children who auditioned to appear in the performance. The crowd was entertained by Alice, a Dodo and a Mouse pitting a flock of Canaries against a flock of Magpies in an exercise in earnest silliness.
    Guest artist and audience favorite Raul Peinado returned to appear in three pieces. Staging the famous Black Swan pas de deux from Swan Lake, Peinado performed the role of Siegfried, partnering with Shannon McGaughey. Mr. Peinado and ADT senior company members were featured in Sara Sanford’s jazzy pointe piece C’est La Vie. He also played the role of a grumpy father trying to convince three girls to go to sleep in the comical Full Moon, which featured apprentice company members. 

    The company performed a new work by Janie Alford, Wilson’s Way, which was a party onstage! The ADT Senior Company dancers energized the crowds in this fun piece.   Jenny Letner set a powerful new solo on Senior Company member Cameron Caldwell, and Ms. Sanford’s charming Red Balloon offered a sweet note for the apprentices and young Parrish Dees.  Ms. Sanford’s triumphant A Lady We All Know closed the show with a flourish that electrified the audience

    The large cast of 32 ADT Company members, guest artist Raul Peinado, and 16 children from the community were all impressive, from the magpies and the canaries to the alluring Black Swan.
    Alabama Dance Theatre was delighted to revive an important tradition of inviting area schools to attend a special daytime performance. Several hundred young people, parents and their teachers came to see the performance on Friday, March 3rd at a subsidized ticket price thanks in part to the Support the Arts Tag License Fund and support from Regions Bank. Blount Elementary, Johnnie Carr Middle School, Dalraida Elementary, Montgomery Academy, Montgomery Christian Academy, and Ascension Day School as well as many homeschool groups, formed a lively, engaged audience that launched the weekend’s performances with energy and excitement. At intermission, Artistic Director Kate Seale Smith and ADT faculty member Jaclyn Speights engaged the young audience with a Q & A session and a short lesson in pantomime movements. ADT provided teachers with an educational booklet about dance, theatre, and the performance’s contents to prepare students for their visit to the Davis Theatre. 

                Following the Saturday matinee, children in the audience were invited on stage to meet the dancers. ADT's Special Events Chairman Margaret Ann Selman, Janie Alford, and committee members Piper Vance, Brittany Calhoun, and  Gibian Waits planned a charming “Meet the Stars Onstage” Party. Children of all ages joined cast members for a meet and greet session and chance to stand on the stage and speak to the dancers from Black Swan, C’est La Vie, Wilson’s Way, Disassembling, Garland Dance from Sleeping Beauty, the characters from Caucus Race and A Lady We All Know.  Cast members autographed children’s programs and posed for photos.  As the children exited the stage, little girls received beautiful roses and little boys were given toy swords.
                            On Sunday afternoon, after four successful performances, the Alabama Dance Theatre gathered at the Montgomery Cultural Arts Center for a delicious Mexican Buffet from Salsarita’s and decadent desserts. The party was organized by Dana Parkman with assistance from Beth Barranco who provided beautiful flower arrangements and festive decorations, Julie Skala who provided tasty cupcakes, and Valerie Kennedy, Piper Vance, and Margaret Ann Selman helped serve food to the guests. ADT’s graduating seniors, Jane Abbie Alford, Shannon McGaughey, Camilla Ohme, Ja’Niya Kennedy, Morgan Calhoun, Arrion Rollins, and Lilla Kate Parkman, left their legacies to the younger dancers and spoke about their years dancing with ADT and what it has meant to each of them. Each senior revealed their post-graduation plans, and many have received dance scholarships to summer programs and college dance programs.

                ADT would like to thank the sponsors of Spring Gala: A Celebration of the Season:  The Daniel Foundation, Poarch Band of Creek Indians, Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama, Blue Cross Blue Shield Caring Foundation, Baptist Health, Regions Bank, WSFA, Montgomery Advertiser, Cumulus Broadcasting, and the Alabama State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. The Support the Arts Tag License Fund made it possible to invite area schools to the Friday morning performance. 

    We would also like to thank Mayor Steven Reed & the City of Montgomery Department of Cultural Affairs and the Montgomery County Commission.  Housing Sponsors were Andy and Wynne Stumpf, Cade and Aynsley Armstrong, and David and Ruth Givens. Sarah McQueen provided transportation.   

                Preparations are now underway for an exciting spring and summer! The Alabama Dance Theatre will attend Regional Dance America/ Southeast’s annual Festival April 26-30 in Montgomery. ADT Company dancers are preparing for several performances during the Festival. As an Honor Company in RDA SE since 1992, ADT is delighted to represent Montgomery in the Southeast region. 

                ADT will be offering Summer Dance Classes, June 5-July 7  in classical ballet (pre-ballet to the professional level), pointe and variations, composition, modern, jazz, hip-hop, contemporary and tap, and a four day  “Tutus and Tiaras” camp for ages 3-8, May 30-June 2. 

                ADT offers several free dance class opportunities each year. This year, Saturday, April 15, young people aged 8 to 19 with any level of dance experience may register for free to try dance with special guest teachers Lance Washington (Hip Hop) and Jessica Washington (ballet), along with a new collaboration with the Cloverdale Playhouse to add a theatrical component to the day.
    The Alabama Dance Theatre Summer Seminar for intermediate and advanced dancers will be held July 10 – July 24. “Stars on the Riverfront” ADT’s free performance will be held Sunday, July 23 and Monday, July 24 at 7:30 at the Riverwalk Amphitheatre.  Classes will be held at the Montgomery Cultural Arts Center, home of the Alabama Dance Theatre located at 1018 Madison Avenue. 

    The Alabama Dance Theatre is looking forward to announcing its 2023-2024 season, “A Season of New Heights.” Please stay tuned to our website and all other social media platforms for exciting details coming soon.

    For more information please call 334-625-2590 or visit www.alabamadancetheatre.com.
    Emily Flowers, Director of Development/Public Relations
    emilyadtdance@gmail.com, (334) 625-2590
  • Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce
    600 S. Court St, P.O. Box 79
    Montgomery, Alabama 36101
    Tel: 334.834.5200   Fax: 334.265.4745

  • Receive the latest announcements and updates.

iStock-499134200 [Converted]