Summer times: Many performances make for one dance-happy summer

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Grab some Texture. Learn some newMoves. Go idiosynCrazy with dance this summer as the local scene explodes.

Yes, Texture Contemporary Ballet moves to the "four"- front with a quartet of premieres and performances. The Kelly-Strayhorn Theater goes international during its newMoves festival. Newbie Shana Simmons will find "Relative Positions" with a cross-disciplinary collective in July. And jazz power comes to town with the Jazz Dance World Congress, accompanied by an international array of companies and a choreography competition. Fasten your safety belts.

-- Jane Vranish

NEWMOVES DANCE FESTIVAL: The Kelly-Strayhorn Theater heads into its fourth annual festival with an international flavor. Sixteen choreographers ranging from Pittsburgh's Gia Cacalano and New York's Marjani Forte to Hungary's BLOOM! Dance Collective will fill the bill for three nights at the theater in East Liberty. Also look for panel discussions and workshops at Dance Alloy studios (through May 12). 412-363-3000 or

BALLET IN CINEMA: Emerging Pictures continues to bring the best in international ballet this summer with "Raymonda" (June 24, July 1 and 10) and The Royal Ballet's "Fille mal Gardee" (May 16, 20 and 29). Carmike 10, Fort Couch Road and The Oaks Theater

ATTACK THEATRE: The Attackers perform in Darius Milhaud's "La Creàtion du Monde" with members of the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony at the conclusion of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra's Paris Festival concerts May 11 and 13. Also look for powerhouse dance at the company's party hearty evening, the Dirty Ball, at 2401 Penn Avenue in the Strip District on May 19.

THE PILLOW PROJECT: Pearlann Porter's Second Saturday series unlocks its improvisational style and fertile imagination every month in The Space Upstairs at Construction Junction. These jazz happenings (May 12, June 9, July 14, Aug. 11) start at 8 p.m. and go on as long as people want to move.

PITTSBURGH BALLET THEATRE SCHOOL PRE-PROFESSIONAL SHOWCASE: It's great to catch PBT's advanced dancers on the cusp of a professional career. This year they will perform George Balanchine's lovely "Serenade," plus selections from "Giselle" and "Napoli," among others at Point Park University's George Rowland White Performance Studio (May 18-20). 412-281-6727 or

DANCING CLASSROOMS PITTSBURGH: It's "Dancing With the Stars" in miniature as eight fifth-grade ballroom teams from Pittsburgh Public Schools compete in the program's grand finale at Pittsburgh Allderdice High School (May 19). http:/

PITTSBURGH BALLET THEATRE SCHOOL: More than 200 young dancers will gather in the annual recital at the Byham Theater (May 25), some to perform a student version of "Etudes," which spans ballet from the barre to performance. 412-456-6666 or

STAYCEE PEARL DANCE PROJECT: Ms. Pearl presents an enhanced version of "OCTAVIA," a piece based on Octavia Butler and including a new sculpture/set as part of the August Wilson Center's First Voice Festival May 26.

AUGUST WILSON CENTER DANCE ENSEMBLE: This popular local company will pop up around the city in various festivals, but it is the only dance representative at the Three Rivers Arts Festival June 3.

MAD HOT BALLROOM PITTSBURGH: If you like your ballroom with a French accent, come see host Pierre Dulaine, international ballroom champion and founder of Dancing Classrooms. Sponsored by Mercy Behavioral Health, this event benefits Dancing Classrooms Pittsburgh with cocktails, hors d'oeuvres and an adult ballroom competition at the Westin Convention Center (June 10).

PITTSBURGH PRIDEFEST: This year the street celebration will feature "100 Minutes of Pittsburgh Dance," from Hot Metal Muses to kNOT Dance and more along Liberty Ave. (June 10).

KELLY STRAYHORN THEATER is sponsoring a series of residencies this summer that will culminate in a public showing. They include Rhode Island's Lostwax (June 22), Philadelphia's idiosynCrazy Productions (June 26, 28 and 29), former Point Park University graduate Luke Murphy (July 6), Guinea's Mama Kadiatou (July 13) and STAYCEE PEARL dance project (Aug. 24). 412-363-3000 or

SHANA SIMMONS DANCE: This independent choreographer has assembled an immersive performance "tour" through the Union Project on North Negley Avenue on July 6 with more than 20 artists, a tour that each audience member personally designs.

TEXTURE CONTEMPORARY BALLET: Alan Obuzor celebrates the first company anniversary at The Space Upstairs with food, drink and Texture performances on July 7. The fun continues at The New Hazlett Theater July 19-22 with "Blur" -- four premieres, four choreographers, 25 dancers and live music by Cello Fury.

INTERNATIONAL SUMMERDANCE: Students from around the world perform choreography by nationally known teaching artists at Point Park University's George Rowland White Performance Studio (July 28-30). 412-392-8000 or

JAZZ DANCE WORLD CONGRESS: Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago will spearhead this five-day workshop in collaboration with Point Park University Aug. 1-5, one that will also include four performances at the Byham Theater. Ten professional companies will take part in the Jazz Dance World Festival at the Byham, including Koresh Dance Company and Philadanco (Philadelphia), Poz Dance Theatre (Korea) and Masashi Action Machine (Japan), along with Pittsburgh's own August Wilson Center Dance Ensemble. And there will be an International Choreography Competition running concurrently as well.

PITTSBURGH BALLET THEATRE once again signals its upcoming season at Hartwood Acres (Aug. 16).

REED SUMMER INTENSIVE: Greer Reed's program, now in its fifth year, features works by Antonio Brown, Crystal Frazier and Terence Greene at the August Wilson Center (Aug. 21).

DUQUESNE UNIVERSITY TAMBURITZANS: The Tammies display their latest twist on Eastern European folk dances at South Park Amphitheater (Aug. 24).



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