Tony Danza, Argentine tango and jazz: A few of the highlights this season at Brooklyn Center
Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College recently announced its 2016-17 season of world-class performances, combining the borough’s unique multicultural flavors with nationally and internationally known performers. From Afro-Cuban jazz and The Great American Songbook to Argentine tango and stepping, the 62nd season at Brooklyn Center brings artists from all over the country and the world to Brooklyn for another year of incredible music, breathtaking international dance, and innovative family performances.
Season highlights include Buenos Aires Tango company Estampas Porteñas (Nov 5), an internationally-celebrated company of 25 dancers and musicians presenting the only New York City performance of their newest show, Deseos: Stories of Longing and Desire. This spectacular new production celebrates the greatest artistic elements of Argentina, including the indomitable tango, the athletic malambo of the gauchos, and a range of passionate and soulful musical styles.
Also in November, Emmy-nominated song-and-dance man Tony Danza (Nov 20) returns to his hometown of Brooklyn with his newest show, Standards & Stories. While you may know him from his roles on iconic television shows like Taxi and Who’s the Boss?, this Broadway veteran is also an accomplished stage performer. He’ll combine selections from the Great American Songbook with storytelling, a dash of soft shoe, and a healthy dose of charisma.
Concertgoers will enjoy an array of artists that represent both yesterday’s classics and today’s more innovative sounds, including performances by season opener Black Violin (Oct 29), 2017 NEA Jazz Master Dr. Lonnie Smith (Feb 25), Haitian singer/songwriter Emeline Michel (Mar 4), vocalist Patti Austin performing a tribute concert celebrating the 100th birthday of Ella Fitzgerald (Apr 22), and Grammy-nominated Afro-Cuban jazz saxophonist Yosvany Terry (May 6).
Brooklyn Center’s dance series includes a Lunar New Year Celebration by the Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company (Jan 22), commemorating the Year of the Rooster. Now in its fourth year, this annual event showcases the rich culture of one of Brooklyn’s most vibrant communities. Another favorite returning to Brooklyn Center is the 55th Anniversary tour of the National Dance Theatre Company of Jamaica (Mar 18-19), presenting two shows combining evocative new works with favorites from their extensive repertoire. The dance series concludes with Washington DC based stepping ensemble Step Afrika! (Apr 1).
Families will enjoy Brooklyn Center’s annual holiday presentation of The Colonial Nutcracker (Dec 11), featuring a Revolutionary War setting complete with a red-coated mouse army and live narration to help younger audience members enjoy this timeless classic. New York-based children’s dance theatre company Treehouse Shakers makes it Brooklyn Center debut with Coyote’s Dance, an interactive production inspired by the trickster character from the folklore of many North American Indian Nations. And the Cinderella story is given a traditional African twist with Dallas Children’s Theatre on Tour’s family musical Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters, based on the award-winning book by John Steptoe.
Tickets range from $15-$55 with select discounts available for seniors, students, and children. Visit www.BrooklynCenter.org for more details.
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