This week's dance events include contemporary dance from Tijuana and Heidi Duckler in East L.A., both free!
5. East Coast and West Coast dance under the stars
Usually seen downtown at the venerable Music Center, New York's celebrated Complexions Contemporary Ballet enjoys a more al fresco environment this week in a joint concert with L.A.'s own Lula Washington Dance Theater. Built around the compelling choreography of Dwight Rhoden and the extraordinary dancer Desmond Richardson, Complexions brings a stunning group of dancers to this venture. Well-known locally, Washington and her namesake ensemble have gained national and international attention for their high-energy dancing. The companies combine for Rhoden's I Wonder Why, set to music by Stevie Wonder, and also perform separately. Among Complexions' scheduled works are Rise, set to the music of U2, and Moonlight, a solo showcasing Richardson's riveting talent. Washington's troupe offers repertoire works as well as the premiere of Turn the Page, a response to Trayvon Martin's fatal encounter with George Zimmerman. Earlier this year, the Music Center brought Chicago's Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and San Francisco's Alonzo King's LINES Ballet together in a similar shared program, which proved to be a highlight of the dance season. This pairing of New York and L.A. dance companies promises to be an equally eventful evening of dance under the stars and an auspicious debut for the Zev Yaroslavsky Signature Series, which promises similar match-ups as part of future Ford summer seasons. Ford Theatres, 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. E., Hlywd.; Sat., Aug. 10, 8 p.m.; $45-$85. (323) 461-3673, www.fordtheatres.org.
4. Heidi Duckler puts Ducks in a Row
A three-part celebration dubbed Three Ducks in a Row includes a 7 p.m. public art tour at the East L.A. Civic Center, an 8 p.m. performance by Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre with live rock/jazz music by Don Preston and Andrea Centazzo at the Amphitheater stage, and a 9 p.m. curbside conversation. It's all free with a reservation at https://heididuckler. secure.force.com/ticket/ and one reservation is good for all three
events. Catch a preview of Duckler's site-specific work at www.heididuckler.org. See Three Ducks in a Row at the East L.A. Civic Center, 4801 E. Third St., E. L.A.; Sat., Aug. 10, 7 p.m. free.
3. The end of NOW
In the third and closing week of REDCAT'S New Original Works (NOW) festival, Los Angeles-based Meg Wolfe and Minneapolis-based Morgan Thorson explore distance and human connection at REDCAT: Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater, 631 W. Second St., dwntwn.; Thurs., Aug. 8-Sat., Aug. 10, 8:30 p.m., $18, $14 students.
2. Dancing on touchy topics
Known for its fierce dancing and socially conscious aethestic, the Tijuana-based contemporary dance troupe Lux Boreal travels north with two danceworks considering touchy issues: In Lamb, it's religion, while in Industrial Desert, it's the effect of maquiladoras, the factories operating just outside the United States in the Free Trade Zone. At Grand Performances, 300-350 S. Grand Ave., dwntwn.;Fri., Aug. 9, 8 p.m., free. 213-687-2159, www.grandperformances.org.
1. New dance to new music
Titled Trajectorie, this performance by Kenneth Walker Dance Project offers contemporary ballet premieres set to commissioned music and works from the company's repertory. Sample the commissioned music at https://soundcloud.com/malone11235/immortal-beloved-ballet-remix. At Martha B. Knoebel Dance Theater, CSULB, 6200 E. Atherton St., Long
Beach ; Sat., Aug. 10, 7:30 p.m., $14 advance, $18 at door, www.kwdp.brownpapertickets.