Ephrat “Bounce” Asherie, a 2016 Bessie Award winner for Innovative Achievement in Dance, creates work for the dynamic group of multifaceted dancers in her company Ephrat Asherie Dance (EAD). Embodying many different African American and Latinx vernacular dances, including breaking, hip hop, house and vogue, EAD is dedicated to exploring the inherently complex and dynamic qualities of these forms - Asherie's "movement phrases--compact bursts of choreography with rapid-fire changes in rhythm and gestural articulation -- bubble up and dissipate, quickly paving the way for something new" (The New York Times).
Running time: Approx. 55 minutes, no intermission (Performed with live music)
Choreography: Ephrat Asherie, in collaboration with EAD
Music: Ernesto Nazareth
Musical Direction: Ehud Asherie
Percussion Arrangements: Sergio Krakowski
Lighting Design: Kathy Kaufmann
Costume Design: Mark Eric
Hailed by The Berkshire Eagle as “real, honest, and breathtaking,” Odeon is a high-energy, hybrid work that layers breaking, hip-hop, house, and vogue to the buoyant score of 20th-century Brazilian composer Ernesto Nazareth, played live. The second collaboration between sister and brother team Ephrat and Ehud Asherie (choreographer and musical director, respectively), the duo reimagines Nazareth’s signature compositions, noted for melding classical music with popular Afro-Brazilian rhythms. Odeon brings together the extended legacies of street and club styles and remixes them to challenge choreographic contexts.
Odeon was developed in part during two residencies at Jacob’s Pillow and through a co-presentation with MASS MoCA. Asherie is the inaugural recipient of the Jacob’s Pillow Fellowship at the Tilles Center for Performing Arts at LIU Post, where she further developed this work. Odeon premiered int he Doris Duke Theatre at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival on June 27, 2018.
UnderScored (Premiering 2021)
Running Time: TBD
Choreography: Ephrat Asherie in collaboration with EAD and guest performers
Lighting Design: Kathy Kaufmann
Costume Design: Mark Eric
Created and performed by members of the company with special guest artists from New York City’s underground scene, Asherie’s newest work is inspired by the intergenerational memories of club dancers. EAD invites audiences to join them on an exhilarating journey through the ever-changing physical landscape of New York City’s underground dance community.
Running Time: TBD
Choreography: Ephrat Asherie in collaboration with EAD
Illustrations: Mo Willems
Original Music Composition: Marty Beller
Experience creativity in motion! Join Ephrat Asherie Dance as they literally jump off the pages and onto the stage. Inspired by the artwork and abstractions of best-selling author, illustrator, and Kennedy Center Artist-in-Residence, Mo Willems, Asherie and dancers collaborate with the beloved children’s book author in this family-friendly visual dance adventure full of doodles and sketches.
Offering a variety of duets, solos and reduce cast excerpts from Ephrat Asherie’s works for live arts series during these challenging times. Excerpts may include sections from Odeon, UnderScored, Riff this Riff that and solo-work featuring Ephrat. The programming is tailored to be flexible and adaptable to the presenter’s needs which include reduced tech, shorter running time and adherence to personnel restrictions set forth by the venue.
*Social Distanced Programming: Indoor and Outdoor Performance, Small Cast
A curated series of documentary film screenings, live engagements, movement workshops and lectures in conversation with two different EAD works: UnderScored or Odeon.
Technology: Zoom or other live streaming platform provided by presenter.
Company requires Presenter to provide virtual stage manager to run virtual activities. A tech rehearsal before every event with the virtual stage manager is required.
The company can adapt activities to meet the needs of each presenter/theater and their respective communities.
BEHIND-THE-SCENES: Creating UnderScored
A sneak peek into the creative process of UnderScored (currently in development). Excerpts of the work are performed in real-time and interspersed with conversation about process and the history of New York City’s underground dance community. Featuring Ephrat, EAD company members and guest artists/ elders from the underground dance community. Option to include moderator alternatively a moderator may be provided by Presenter.
BEHIND-THE-SCENES: Creating Odeon
A behind-the-scenes look into the choreographic process and musical influences that led to the creation of Odeon. Brief excerpts of the work are screened and discussed along with live musical and movement explanations/demonstrations to highlight stylistic nuances, sonic shifts and the works’ dynamic sources of inspiration. Featuring Ephrat, EAD company members and EAD musicians. Option to include moderator alternatively a moderator may be provided by Presenter.
Curation and screening of documentaries about Black and LatinX vernacular dance, with a specific focus on New York City’s history as the birthplace of Hip Hop and it’s role in defining Underground Dance culture. Includes screening plus post-screening discussion with Ephrat and a special guest (someone who is featured in the documentary or an expert in the field).
Sample titles include: Everything Remains Raw, From Mambo to Hip Hop, Check Your Body at the Door, Rubble Kings. Additional titles can be added/discussed as necessary.
ARTIST LECTURES with Ephrat Asherie
NYC Underground Dance Roots: The Loft and The Paradise Garage Women in Hip Hop: B-girls, Tastemakers, Organizers and Pioneers. The Beginnings: The Roots of B-boying/B-girling Choreographic Process: Social Dance, Concert Dance and Inherent Paradoxes.
Additional lecture subject matters can be added/discussed as necessary.
EPHRAT ASHERIE DANCE MOVEMENT WORKSHOPS
Ephrat Asherie Dance offers movement classes for Dance Departments or Community Organizations in: Breaking, House, Freestyle/Improvisation, Dance Theater: An approach to working with movement and text. Classes may be tailored and adapted as needed.
Depending on class size, Ephrat may be joined by additional EAD company members to create break-out groups for more personalized instruction.
15-30 Students Max. depending on class. To be determine based on class and student abilities.
60 minutes Zoom Class + 15 minute Q&A with Ephrat.
Master Classes EAD offers master classes in breaking, hip-hop and/or house for dancers of all ages.
House Master Class
This class will cover some of the fundamentals of house, including aspects of footwork, floorwork and the importance of a freestyle approach to the form. The cultural context in which this dance was created and where it continues to thrive will discussed and underscored in the movement. Running time: 90 minutes.
Breaking Master Class
This class will cover some of the foundational techniques of breaking(b-boying/b-girling) including top rock, drops to the floor, footwork and basic spins. The cultural and historical content from which breaking emerged will be highlighted and discussed. Through movement and discussion students will gain a more in depth understanding of the global importance of HipHop culture. Running time: 90 minutes.
Freestyle/Improvisation Master Class
This class will focus on methods/exercises/concepts to open students up to ideas surrounding freestyle/improvisation. Moving from ideas and values rooted in street and social dance, this class will push students to reach outside their comfort zone to find new modes of exploring movement, rhythm, melody and space and emphasize the importance of connecting with others through movement. Running time: 90 minutes.
Multigenerational Movement Workshop Presented in a lec dem format, this workshop is created to inform, connect and bring individuals from all generations together through street and social dance. Performing dance sequences from EAD repertory, members from the company demonstrate and lead this movement workshop, emphasizing how meaningful creating relationships through movement can be. The workshop draws from various styles including breaking, hip hop, house and vogue as a means to help participants move out of their comfort zone, find new modes of expression and connect with one another. Running time: 90 minutes.
Open Practice Session
This session allows dancers of all levels to interact, exchange and share ideas with company members. A low stress environment where learning can happen at various paces and levels, this practice session reflects the ethos of club culture, which embodies openness, individuality, tolerance and moving in and out of your comfort zone in a space. Music playlists curated by EAD are sure to inspire all to “get busy”! Running time: 90 minutes.
The company offers lecture demonstrations and seminars on the many street and social dances the company embodies, underscoring the cultural context from which these dance forms emerged and the spaces in which these styles continue to thrive and exist. Running time: TBD
Schooltime Matinee: Odeon
Performed with live music, this schooltime matinee of Odeon begins with a brief introduction from Ephrat Asherie followed by a 40-minute version of Odeon, the full company participates in a Q&A session with students. Running time: 50 minutes (includes Q&A session)
Grade range: Grade 6-High School preferred.
Post-performance discussions available upon request. No pre-show discussions/talks.
"Ms. Asherie’s movement phrases — compact bursts of choreography with rapid-fire changes in rhythm and gestural articulation — bubble up and dissipate, quickly paving the way for something new."
The New York Times
"a nonstop celebration"
"Asherie and her company are a sight anywhere they perform."
The Boston Globe
"Ephrat Asherie creates a world I want to live in...stunning and unique… ’Odeon’ is real, honest and breathtaking… The work is a gift."