Jump Rhythm

Photo Friday: Jump Rhythm Jazz Project's Rhythm Rich Approach to Dance

Jump Rhythm Jazz Project is at the Josephine Louis Theater, Northwestern University's beautiful dance performance venue, with a concert filled with their unique and rhythm rich approach to dance, movement, self-expression, and just plain enjoying life. The program, which is titled Getting Down, Going Forward, combines the work of Jump Rhythm choreographers Billy Siegenfeld, Brandi Coleman and Kevin Durnbaugh with Northwestern choreographers Kat Scott, Hillary Aarons, and Aric Barrow.

"I'm really looking to cultivate choreographers who use rhythm and dynamics as their source material," Artistic Director Siegenfeld explains, "instead of shape and form." The result is a multicolored evening of insight into how artists can move and be moved. Here's our Photo Friday set of shots from the performance, and there's a lot more at johnnynevin.com.

Ready to Light Up Four Nights in November: Jump Rhythm Jazz Project's Fall Season

Jump Rhythm Jazz Project talking it over in rehearsal (Photo by Johnny Nevin)

When Bill Murray told Andie MacDowell at the end of Groundhog Day that "anything different is good" he probably wasn't talking about Jump Rhythm Jazz Project specifically, although if he'd ever seen them perform, he might have mentioned them by name. That's not really likely; Billy Siegenfeld founded Jump Rhythm in New York just about the time that they were filming Groundhog Day, and despite more than twenty years of demonstrating how to light up the night and enthrall an audience, not that many people know about them.

It's a Dance Company like no other, and when they perform their Fall Season at Chicago's Stage 773 from November 8th through the 11th, they're bound to bring a completely unique energy and outlook to a completely different kind of movement and choreography, just like they always do. In fact, it's actually a little surprising that they're still so surprising. Artistic Director Billy Siegenfeld was named the Cliff Dweller's Choreographer of the Year in 2011, and the entire Company won an Emmy Award for their performances in the PBS documentary Jump Rhythm Jazz Project: Getting There.

Dance Chicago's Opening Night: Jump Rhythm Jazz Project, Aerial Dance Chicago, Forum Jazz Dance Theatre and More

Kevin Durnbaugh and Jordan Batta of Jump Rhythm Jazz (Photo by Johnny Nevin)

Dance Chicago opens their 2012 season at the Carl Sandburg HS Auditorium in Orland Park, featuring a characteristically wide range of dance companies. Before continuing their month-long run at the Athenaeum Theatre and at Studio 773, the festival (in its eighteenth year) opens with a show that will include Aerial Dance Chicago, Jump Rhythm Jazz Project, and Forum Jazz Dance Theatre (performing Christian Denice's within.impulse) among many others. Jump Rhythm will perform The Sumptuous Screech of Simplicity, one of the works featured in their Fall Series at Studio 773, beginning Thursday, November 8.

The Sumptuous Screech of Simplicity is a typically innovative and entertaining JRJP piece; five dancers sit side by side in closely arranged chairs, and in a non-stop display of high-speed interaction, take an audience to at least four or five different places they never expected to go. Aerial Dance Chicago presents yet another part of the broad spectrum of independent Dance that Dance Chicago is known for championing; their site describes how they "delve into the expressive potential of a multi-dimensional dance floor, and transcend the assumed limits of dance." For the rest of the programs in this year's Dance Chicago, take a look through the show details at dancechicago.com.

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