NEA Supports Center for the Arts’ Breaking Ground Dance Series

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) awarded Wesleyan’s Center for the Arts a $20,000 grant to support the 2015–2016 Breaking Ground Dance Series. The CFA is one of the 919 nonprofit organizations nationwide to receive an NEA Art Works grant.

The Breaking Ground Dance Series, now in its 15th season at Wesleyan, features cutting-edge choreography, world-renowned companies, and companies pushing the boundaries of the art form.

Montreal’s Compagnie Marie Chouinard returns to Wesleyan with two new dance works.

Montreal’s Compagnie Marie Chouinard returns to Wesleyan with two new dance works.

Upcoming performances this season include the return of Montréal’s Compagnie Marie Chouinard on Feb. 6-7, 2015 and Tari Aceh! Music and Dance from Northern Sumatra on Feb. 27.

Compagnie Marie Chouinard will be performing the New England premiere of “Gymnopédies,” created around the theme of the duet set to music by French composer and pianist Érik Satie; and the Connecticut premiere of “Henri Michaux: Mouvements,” featuring texts and visually arresting projected India-ink drawings from the book “Mouvements” by Belgian-born poet, writer and painter Henri Michaux, and electroacoustic music by Canadian composer Louis Dufort. The Connecticut premiere of “Tari Aceh! (Dance Aceh!)” will feature nine female performers from Aceh, Indonesia on their first-ever tour of the United States. Their dances, inherited from their ancestors, are stunning in their synchronicity and include rhythmic body percussion and the singing of both Islamic liturgical and folk texts, accompanied by percussion. The dancers are between the ages of 14 and 24, and study at Syiah Kuala University, located in Banda Aceh, the capital of the Aceh province on the western Indonesian island of Sumatra.

The Connecticut premiere of "Tari Aceh! (Dance Aceh!)" will feature nine female performers from Aceh, Indonesia

The Connecticut premiere of “Tari Aceh! (Dance Aceh!)” will feature nine female performers from Aceh, Indonesia.

“Support from the National Endowment for the Arts has been central to our ability to fulfill our mission to become a vibrant center for dance in the State and to bring contemporary dance to audiences who might not otherwise be able to access it,” said Pamela Tatge, director of the Center for the Arts. “We are grateful for the vote of confidence that this grant implies.”

Art Works grants support the creation of art, public engagement with art, lifelong learning in the arts, and enhancement of the livability of communities through the arts. The NEA received 1,474 eligible applications under the Art Works category, requesting more than $75 million in funding. Of those applications, 919 are recommended for grants for a total of $26.6 million.

The National Endowment for the Arts was established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government.