DCDC offers intimate look at organization

Lunchtime event at troupe’s studios

As the renowned Dayton Contemporary Dance Company prepares to open its 44th season, dubbed “Reverberations,” the organization will host an “Up Close and Personal” forum Wednesday offering audiences to become acquainted or reacquainted with its leaders, dancers and artistic mission.

In addition to simply giving back to the community, organizers are hoping the event draws more attention to the DCDC studios, which have been housed at 840 Germantown St. for the past three seasons.

“We wanted to offer individuals who have supported us for a long time to receive a now, new, personal look at DCDC,” said executive director RoNita Hawes-Saunders. “We also realize several of our friends in the community have not yet visited our new home, which is on the site of Central State University’s Dayton campus. So we thought it would be a great to have a special lunchtime event to share about DCDC today.”

In addition to reflections by Hawes-Saunders and artistic director Debbie Blunden-Diggs, patrons will be treated to a sneak peek at a new routine titled “Still Present.”

“Anyone who attends will have an opportunity to see what our dancers go through in terms of practice and rehearsal,” said Hawes-Saunders. “You will be able to hear instruction from choreographers and meet the dancers. We have 14 dancers in the company this season, particularly four new dancers.”

DCDC officially launches its season Nov. 2 at the Dayton Art Institute with the local premiere of Steve Bognar and Julia Reichert’s documentary “Sparkle,” chronicling the recovery of longtime DCDC member and Dayton native Sheri “Sparkle” Williams following her first major injury in her accomplished career. Hawes-Saunders considers the documentary a hallmark of the season and an important kickoff for the troupe.

“We are very excited about Sheri’s 40 years with the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company,” she said. “After the documentary, audiences will be able to ask questions of Steve, Julia, Sheri and Debbie. The full company will also perform a new work, a short piece, specifically choreographed for Sheri.”

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