Best Site-Specific Dance Company (2013)

Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre

Choreographer Heidi Duckler long ago cemented her bona fides as L.A.'s mistress of site-specific dance theater, using movement to guide audiences to a deeper understanding of this city's geographic infrastructure, from Laundromats and the underground Red Car lines to historic jails and the cement walls of the L.A. River. First as Collage Dance Theatre, now as the Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre, Duckler's ensemble includes dancers, actors, writers and composers. This past year its performances involved startling passengers waiting for the Van Nuys Flyaway bus to LAX and exploring the grounds of a century-old respiratory hospital. The ensemble also performed with performers representing many of the city's cultures, including the whirl of long-skirted Korean dancers, precision Ethiopian gymnasts who made Cirque du Soleil look tame, a Mexican folkloric troupe in East L.A. and an Armenian dance company in Glendale. Performances are very affordable and often include supplemental events and discussions. —Ann Haskins


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