Filed under: At the Center
“Ayikodans performances a triumph!” exclaimed the headline in the Miami Herald. “A weekend of shows to benefit the beleaguered Haitian dance troupe was a rousing success that exceeded organizers’ hopes,” said Herald dance critic Jordan Levin.
Intensely aware of the precarious position of many Haitian arts groups following the catastrophic 2010 earthquake, the Center committed to producing a fundraiser for the company—originally two performances, which grew to three due to the extraordinary demand for tickets—scheduled for May 21 & 22. The Center also commissioned a new work from the company, set to premiere in Miami in the spring of the 2011/12 Dance at the Arsht season.The goal was to help the company through its immediate challenges—and the Adrienne Arsht Center convened an outstanding group of community leaders committed to helping Aykodans develop long term tools for success so that they can continue to inspire pride in the strength, beauty and richness of Haitian culture.
“We have helped save a very important dance company from Haiti, whose future is brighter as a result of our efforts,” said Adrienne Arsht Center President John Richard. “The results are stunning by any measuring stick—transformative, world class, community-based—a triple play on our mission chart.”
Supporters of the modern dance group, which is led by Haitian choreographer Jeanguy Saintus, raised $117,000. An additional $141,874 in-kind support was secured from a dedicated committee of influential Miami leaders. Support included professional expertise, creative talent, products and other resources, much of which will benefit Ayikodans long into the future. A future that—with these efforts and the company’s own bounty of artistic gifts—is now bright with promise.
“Judging by the power and quality of Ayikodans’ Saturday night performance, Saintus’ battle has already been an artistic triumph,” continued Levin in her review. “The dancers were magnificent, exhibiting a mesmerizing combination of powerful technique, physicality and emotional intensity.”
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