[Chicago, IL] – The Joffrey Academy of Dance, Official School of The Joffrey Ballet, announces the winners of the fifth annual Choreographers of Color Award: Jennifer Archibald, Abdul Latif and Stephanie Martinez. This announcement follows a national call for artists to submit applications, which began in July.
The Choreographers of Color Award was created to recognize emerging minority choreographers and to provide them with a platform to showcase their original and innovative work. Each of the three selected choreographers will be given a minimum of 30 rehearsal hours to set a new work on the Joffrey Academy Trainees and Joffrey Studio Company. Each winning choreographer will also receive a $2,500 stipend and an opportunity to work directly with Joffrey Academy Artistic Directors, Alexei Kremnev and Anna Reznik. The three world premieres will be presented in “Winning Works 2015” at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago in March 2015.
“We are proud to be able to present our Winning Works program highlighting three up-and-coming choreographers chosen through our Choreographers of Color initiative for the fifth year in a row,” said Ashley Wheater, Artistic Director. “The Joffrey Ballet thrives on the diversity of our dancers and choreographers and to showcase this commitment via our Academy is simply thrilling.”
Jennifer Archibald is the Founder and Artistic Director of the Arch Dance Company and Program Director of ArchCore40 dance intensives. Archibald has choreographed for the Atlanta Ballet, Ailey II, Cincinnati Ballet, and worked commercially for Tommy Hilfiger, NIKE and MAC Cosmetics as well as chart-listed singers and actors. In 2013, Jennifer was awarded a Choreographic Fellows for Ailey’s New Directions Choreography Lab under the direction of Robert Battle. She has presented Arch Dance Company nationally having been awarded two National Performance Network grants; and by special invitation at notable dance festivals country wide. She has staged various off-Broadway shows and choreographed for the musicals Carousel, Pippin, The Music Man and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. In 2016 she will be creating a new work for the Cincinnati Ballet. To learn more about Jennifer visit www.jenniferarchibald.com.
Abdul Latif is a graduate of Wesleyan University and NYU Tisch School of the Arts, an MFA graduate-scholarship recipient of the Alvin Ailey and Joffrey Ballet School and a directing fellow at the T. Schrieber Acting Studio. Latif is currently a member of two dance companies: The Group, Donald Byrd’s contemporary ballet company and The Works, Jennifer Muller’s contemporary company. Latif was the resident recipient of Ballet Hispanico’s Institutito Coreografico in 2012. He is the co-designer and founding choreographer of The Muller Works Foundation Choreographic Residency/Legacy Project. Latif is currently conceiving The NEXT Project, launching his urban-contemporary style, and is opening his Performing Arts Firm called Abdul Latif – D2D/T.
Stephanie Martinez is an award-winning Chicago dance artist with over 30 years professional performing experience. Her 2009 choreographic debut, AviMar, for Luna Negra Dance Theater’s 10th anniversary season, instantly secured her status as a sought-after dancemaker. She has since traveled the country choreographing for dance companies and universities, including Elements Contemporary Ballet, Visceral Dance Chicago, Chicago Dance Crash, Jacksonville University, Shenandoah University, Virginia Commonwealth University and University of Richmond. In 2010, she assisted Broadway legend Ann Reinking in setting the Fosse Trilogy on Thodos Dance Chicago, as well as Daniel Ezralow, choreographer of Broadway’s Spiderman: Turn off the Dark, in remounting his celebrated work, Pulse, for Company C Contemporary Ballet in San Francisco.
The “Winning Works 2015” program also includes a World Premiere by Joffrey Academy Artistic Director Alexei Kremnev titled Windy Sand. With music composed by Karen LeFrak, this piece is dedicated to the Lake Michigan and City of Chicago.
For more information: joffrey.org.