CONTRA-TIEMPO: Urban Latin Dance is New Face of LA Dance

LA-based Urban Latin Dance company performs at The NEW LATC on June 13th

By Marina Magalhaes
Published on LatinoLA: May 12, 2009

CONTRA-TIEMPO: Urban Latin Dance is New Face of LA Dance

CONTRA-TIEMPO is a Los Angeles-based activist dance company founded in 2005 by choreographer Ana Mar?¡a Alvarez and a dynamic group of performers. The company fuses Salsa, Afro-Cuban, West African, Hip-Hop, and abstract dance-theater to create an invigorating blend of physically intense and politically astute performance. While their performances are consistently electrifying, what sets the company apart most is its unique relationship to its own community.

CONTRA-TIEMPO is an active and uncompromisingly radical group that strives to create an impact on the ways in which artists function within communities. Its members are fierce dancers and performers who are also immigrants, teachers, activists, organizers, living and working in Los Angeles. Each member lives and confronts daily struggles within the varied and infinitely complex political and personal landscapes in which we live, which Alvarez seeks to address in her work.

CONTRA-TIEMPO will be performing on June 13th, 2009 at The NEW LATC theater in downtown LA- a one night only show!! CONTRA-TIEMPO will be presenting their past works, "I Dream America", "Against the Times", "Brackish Waters", "Pl?ístico", and other new works. "I Dream America" is a 40-minute movement opera, which primarily seeks to engage the tensions, commonalities, strains and histories between the Black and Latino communities that is embedded in our past and still plagues communities at present. "Against the Times" explores Salsa as a dance of resistance, change, and of the times- together the cast will move resistance from being adversarial to being the fundamental key for communication and empowerment between partners and for a people.

CONTRA-TIEMPO has taken off as a company in the past two years- touring "I Dream America" and "Against the Times" non-stop nationally and internationally to New York, North Carolina, Georgia, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington DC, and Puerto Rico. Finally, the company will be back in Los Angeles presenting a full show for the first time in two years! In October 2008 CONTRA-TIEMPO led their 1st Annual Cultural Exchange delegation of professional artists to work with professional dance companies in La Havana and Santiago, Cuba- they will be returning to Cuba for their 2nd Annual trip this July 2009. This summer will be an exciting one for the company as they will also be presented at Jacob's Pillow on Aug. 6th and at the Lincoln Center on Aug. 9th.

When Lewis Segal last wrote about CONTRA-TIEMPO in the LA Times he called the company "The new face of Los Angeles dance, and the new voice as well."

For more information on CONTRA-TIEMPO or to buy tickets to their June 13th performance, please visit www.contra-tiempo.org.

About Marina Magalhaes:
Marina Magalh?úes fares from Bras?¡lia, Buenos Aires, Tokyo, Madrid, La Paz, Chicago, and Los Angeles. She is currently attending UCLA under the prestigious International Moss Scholarship majoring in World Arts and Cultures with a Dance Concentration.
Author's website

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