Centneary Stage's annual festival of dance

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  • Nijawon Matthews of XY Dance Project Photos provided

  • Chinese New Year, by the Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company

  • Performer with the Nai-Ni Chen company

— Centenary Stage Company celebrates the artistry of dance in the Lackland Performing Arts Center with the 2017 Dance Fest. This year’s exciting Dance Fest will feature the XY Dance Project on Saturday, March 18 at 8 PM, Moe-Tion Dance Theater on Sunday March 26 at 4pm and finally, Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company with its performance “Chinese New Year” on Saturday April 1 at 2PM and their repertoire of original works on Sunday April 9 at 2PM. All performances will be held in the Sitnik Theatre of Centenary Stage Company’s Lackland Performing Arts Center.

The Dance Festival kicks off with the XY Dance Project on Saturday, March 18 at 8pm. The XY Dance Project has a unique movement style that blends contemporary dance through the spiritual rhythms of African Dance, the grace and peace of Tia Chi, and the heart of street dance. The Artistic Director Nijawwon Matthews is a resident teacher/choreographer for The Joffrey Ballet School based in New York City, as well as a resident teacher at Broadway Dance Center in NYC. As a dance educator and choreographer, Matthews has travelled nationally and internationally from the British Virgin Islands to Taiwan to instruct master classes for a host of academic schools, dance studios, and professional companies. In addition to the evening performance, Matthews will be leading a dance workshop from 10AM-11:30AM on March 18, which is FREE with the purchase of a ticket to the XY Dance performance. The workshop is open to all levels of dancers.

The Dance Festival continues with Moe-tion Dance Theatre on Sunday, March 26 at 4pm. Established in 2007 the Moe-tion Dance Theatre is a contemporary dance company based in New Jersey. Under the artistic direction of Maureen Glennon, the company is dedicated to experimenting and creating new forms of expression. The company is best known for their diverse repertoire and site-specific work and has performed at numerous festivals, showcases and venues throughout the tri - state area. Moe-tion Dance Theater’s mission is to present a wide range of programs that educate, enrich and entertain. It seeks to promote an inclusive vision of the arts through the language of modern dance, painting, sculpture, photography, literature and live music. It strives to include people of all ages, backgrounds and abilities. The company creates productions that expose the community to multiple art forms in one event.

Closing Centenary Stage Company’s 2017 Dance Fest, Nia-Ni Chen Dance Company will be performing an exciting double feature. On Saturday April 1 at 2pm Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company will present their family friendly the “First Chinese New Year”. Then on Sunday April 9 at 2pm Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company returns to the Sitnik stage with an afternoon of their own unique works. The dances of Nai- Ni Chen fuse the dynamic freedom of the American modern dance with the grace and splendor of Asian art. The Company’s productions take the audience beyond cultural boundaries to where tradition meets innovation and freedom arises from discipline.

The “First Chinese New Year” is a spectacular production of dazzling props, colorful costumes, mesmerizing music, fantastic acrobatics, and lively dance. It is a family- friendly production for children ages 5 to Adults. Nai-Ni Chen’s repertoire of work has been heralded by the New York Times as a “blossom of color, energy, and motion, like endlessly proliferating forces of cosmic energy”. A heartwarming story highlights the intrinsic value of coming together, courage, hard- working and ingenuity.

Tickets for the Annual Dance Fest are $20.00 for adults and are $15.00 for children under 12 in advance and per performance. Centenary Stage Company is also offering a flex pass option for the 2017 Dance Festival for $37.50 and grants entry to any THREE performances.

For more information and to purchase tickets visit centenarystageco.org or call the Centenary Stage Company box office at (908) 979 - 0900. The box office is open Monday - Friday from 1pm - 5pm, and two hours prior to every performance. The CSC box office is located in the Lackland Center, 715 Grand Avenue Hackettstown, NJ. Centenary Stage Company can also be found on social media platforms Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Like and follow to receive the latest in CSC news and special offers.

The 2016-17 season of preforming arts events at the Centenary Stage Company is made possible through the generous support of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the NJ Sate Council on the Arts, the Shubert Foundation, the Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, the Sandra Kupperman Foundation, and CSC corporate sponsors. These include Premier Season Sponsor Heath Village Retirement Community, Silver Sponsors Hackettstown Reginal Medical center, Home Instead Senior Care (Washington), The Holiday Inn in Budd Lake, Fulton Bank of New Jersey, as well as Centenary Stage Company members and supporters.

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