Five Dance Shows to See in L.A. This Week: Sleeping Beauty Goes Goth

Artemis Danza in Traviata
Artemis Danza in Traviata
Photo by Stefano Baioni

This week's dance events include JazzAntiqua with live music, Invisible Cities disappearing, day-long home invasion dance and an Italian troupe's debut.

5. Italians dance about the French

French author Alexander Dumas, fils' Lady of the Camellias, the tale of the doomed courtesan who sacrifices herself for love, inspired Italian Giuseppe Verdi's opera La Traviata. A similar Franco/Italian mix is at play as the Italian dance troupe Artemis Danza performs French choreographer Monica Casadei's Traviata, which draws on music from the opera. The performance jointly sponsored by L.A.'s Italian Cultural Institute and Le Lycée Français. At Theatre Raymond Kabbaz, 10361 W. Pico Blvd., W.L.A.; Sat., Nov. 16, 7:30 p.m., $25, $15 students. 310-286-0553,

Adam Maskell in Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty: A Gothic Romance
Adam Maskell in Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty: A Gothic Romance
Photo by Mikah Smillie

4. Sleeping Beauty goes Goth

In 1997, Los Angeles hosted the U.S. premiere of Matthew Bourne's breakthrough Swan Lake featuring male swans in feathered knickers, helping to launch what became an international sensation. Since then Bourne's rebooting of ballet classics has produced audacious and popular theatrical events -- a Nutcracker set in an Oliver Twist orphanage, a Cinderella cinematically moved to WWII London. Despite occasional mixed reviews for Bourne's choreographic skills, his talent for producing enthralling, even visionary treatments of familiar stories is unquestioned. The man is back with Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty. It also totes the subtitle "A Gothic Romance," a strong clue that it's prime Bourne paying homage to the original classic ballet, and particularly the luscious Tchaikovsky score, while gender-bending the various good/bad fairies and injecting a nightclub populated with vampires when Aurora is awakened. Bourne always enjoys his bad-boy characters, but he has not ignored the Beauty of the title, who appears first as a perky bunraku puppet and then later as a barefoot, free spirit (a stated reference to Isadora Duncan) before her sleep, something the audience is unlikely to do at Ahmanson Theatre, Music Center, 135 N. Grand Ave., dwntwn.; Thurs.-Fri., Nov. 21-22, 8 p.m., Sat., Nov. 23, 2 & 8 p.m.; Sun., Nov. 24 & Dec. 1, 1 & 6:30 p.m.; Tues.-Wed., Nov. 26-27, 8 p.m.; Fri.-Sat., Nov. 29-30, 2 & 8 p.m.; $35-$120.

See also: 5 Artsy Things to Do in L.A. This Week

3. Invisible Cities: Now you see it, soon you won't

Historic meets high tech as audiences equipped with the latest wireless headphones wander through L.A.'s iconic Union Station following dancers and musicians in Invisible Cities. The show is described as an "invisible opera," and the libretto and music by Christopher Cerrone were inspired by a novel by Italo Calvino. Choreographer Danielle Agami and L.A. Dance Project dancers contribute their talents to this innovative twist on the site specific performance. At Union Station, 800 N. Alameda St., dwntwn.; Fri., Nov. 15, 7:30 & 10 p.m., $25, 213-683-6897.

2. Home invasion dancers

The home-invasion performers of Home/L.A. descend on Highland Park as the generous homeowner opens the doors for dancers, choreographers and an audience to occupy the premises for two site-specific performances, at sunrise and at sunset, plus other related events all day long. Full details at At a private residence, Highland Park; Sat., Nov. 16, 5:30 a.m. & 4 p.m., $25, $15 students,

See also: Our Latest Theater Reviews

JazzAntiqua dancers Autumn Randolph and Alex-Malachi Middleton
JazzAntiqua dancers Autumn Randolph and Alex-Malachi Middleton
Photo by Joe Lambie

1. JazzAntiqua going strong at 20

Celebrating its 20th anniversary, the contemporary dance troupe JazzAntiqua Dance and Music Ensemble offers an evening brimming with jazz dance and live music. JazzAntiqua artistic director Pat Taylor recruited choreographer Carlos Jones to provide a new work to accompany repertoire favorites. The evening will include honors for nine local dance legends designated living treasures: Nzingha Camara, Karen McDonald, Donald McKayle, Hama, Shirley Martin, Jaime Rogers, Lady Walquer Vereen, Lula Washington and Chester Whitmore. At Nate Holden Performing Arts Center, 4718 W. Washington Blvd., Los Angeles; Sat., Nov. 16, 8 p.m., $20-$50, 626-869-7328,,

Public Spectacle, L.A. Weekly's arts & culture blog, on Facebook; and Twitter:


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >