National Choreographers Initiative starts today to create four new ballets

Sixteen dancers from across the country chosen to participate in this annual southern California project

July 25, 2015 at 8pm
Irvine Barclay Theatre - 4242 Campus Drive | 949.854.4646

To view video, click here

Tickets: $32; students with valid student ID $20, plus a limited number of $60 VIP tickets

Irvine, CA— Today the serious business of creativity begins at Molly Lynch's National Choreographers Initiative project. Four choreographers and sixteen dancers meet today for the first time. They are tasked over the next three weeks with the mission to explore movement, experiment with choreography and push the boundaries of their own creativity. This first day will be spent getting to know each other and learning the movement styles of each of the four choreographers. By the end of today, each dancer will be assigned to work with two choreographers throughout the project.

For the next couple of weeks the dancers will be working 8 hours a day for 6 days a week. The daily schedule starts with a morning class to keep everyone in top physical condition. In a 3-hour morning session two choreographers work in different studios with their chosen dancers to experiment and develop their choreography. After a lunch break, the works starts all over again with the other two choreographers.

Since its founding in 2004, the National Choreographers Initiative has become an important incubator for creating new dance works and professional development of choreographers. It differs from many other new work projects by imposing no restrictions on the type of work created and allowing the choreographer to keep his/her own work since it is not being commissioned by a company.

The dancers needed for this type of project have special qualities. The schedule is physically quite demanding and the process requires an adventuresome spirit, an open outlook to try new things, and the ability to adapt quickly.

The dancers chosen for the 2015 project are:

Edilsa Armendariz, Bay Pointe Ballet
Julia Feldman, Sacramento Ballet
Erica Felsch, Smuin Ballet
Keenan McLaren, Nashville Ballet
Allynne Noelle, Los Angeles Ballet
Lauren Pschirrer, Ballet Memphis
Ashley Lynn Sherman, Ballet Austin
Molly Wagner, Kansas City Ballet


Brandon Alexander, Teater Vanemuine Ballet

Allen AJ Abrams, freelance
Thomas Baker, Oregon Ballet Theatre
Jake Casey, Cincinnati Ballet
Zachary Guthier, Los Angeles Ballet
Evan Swenson, freelance
Dustin True, Los Angeles Ballet
Rex Wheeler, Sacramento Ballet

The 2015 project runs July 7-26 with a public showing at the Barclay on July 25, 2015 at 8pm.  The four choreographers will be Nicolas Blanc, Norbert De La Cruz III, Jimmy Orrante, and Sarah Tallman. 

 For more information about the choreographers go to:  

The National Choreographers Initiative was developed to promote the creation and production of professional dance. It engages outstanding choreographers from around the United States and provides a laboratory environment where choreographers can make new work as well as experiment and develop their craft. NCI also provides an opportunity for the southern California community to be a part of the process of creating new contemporary ballets and seeing these works performed for the very first time.
Artistic Director Molly Lynch selects four choreographers, as well as sixteen professional dancers from ballet companies across the country, to participate in this intensive 3 week process. NCI has brought 44 choreographers to California to develop new works. Many of the pieces begun here have gone on to be performed elsewhere in the U.S. and abroad. The project culminates in a public works-in-progress showing that invites the audience at the evening’s end to ask questions and learn about the creative process.

 View and download photos of past NCI showings.
Molly Lynch is an award winning choreographer and artistic director, with over 35 years of experience creating, producing, and presenting dance. She is currently an Associate Professor of Dance in the Claire Trevor School of the Arts at the University of California, Irvine. She teaches ballet, pointe, partnering, ballet repertory, senior seminar and arts management. Ms. Lynch is the Founder and Artistic Director of the National Choreographers Initiative.

This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Press Contact:
Karen Drews Hanlon
Director of Communications
Irvine Barclay Theatre/
National Choreographers Initiative
949.509.2813 office | 949.929.7891 cell