CHICAGO, December 15, 2016 - National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu approved more than $30 million in grants this week as part of the NEA's first major funding announcement for fiscal year 2017. 


Included in this announcement is an Art Work grant of $10,000 to Thodos Dance Chicago to support the March 2017 restaging of legendary West Coast choreographer Bella Lewitzky's seminal work Nos Duraturi.  


The grants also helps fund a comprehensive education outreach initiative to teach the Lewitzky technique to Chicago professional and youth dancers.


The Art Works category focuses on the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement with diverse and excellent art, lifelong learning in the arts and the strengthening of communities through the arts. 


"The arts are for all of us, and by supporting organizations such as Thodos Dance Chicago, the National Endowment for the Arts is providing more opportunities for the public to engage with the arts," said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. "Whether in a theater, a town square, a museum, or a hospital, the arts are everywhere and make our lives richer."


"We are delighted that the NEA has awarded Thodos Dance Chicago a $10,000 grant to support our newest work to emerge from our American Dance Legacy Project, Bella Lewitzky's Nos Duraturi," said TDC founder and artistic director Melissa Thodos. "We so appreciate the NEA's endorsement of our work, and we look forward to introducing a new generation of audiences to the work of Bella Lewitzky, a true icon of modern dance."



More about the NEA's support of  Nos Duraturi


The NEA Arts Work grant will support Thodos Dance Chicago's restaging and presentation of Bella Lewitzky's Nos Duraturi, premiering Saturday, March 11, 2017 at 7:30 p.m. at Chicago's Auditorium Theatre as part of Thodos Dance Chicago's 25th Anniversary FULL CIRCLE concert.


Former Lewitzky dancer Walter Kennedy, who was featured in a poignant duet in the 1984 premiere of Nos Duraturi, along with former Lewitzky company member Amy Ernst, will spend three weeks in residence at Thodos Dance Chicago's studio setting the work on the full company, working with the company's lighting and costume designers to honor the dramatic lighting and costumes for the piece and creating a lecture presentation for education outreach.


The grant also will help fund a series of Lewitzky technique master classes to be offered to the Chicago dance community. Walter Kennedy will personally teach master classes with youth dancers at the Chicago High School for the Arts and Whitney Young Magnet High School, with the pre-professional and company trainees at the Joffrey Ballet Academy, an open class for advanced and professional dancers at Visceral Dance Center, and three open classes at Thodos Dance Chicago's own rehearsal studio.


Bella Lewitzky (1916-2004) was a legendary teacher, choreographer, and powerful force for arts advocacy and dance education. Her artistic and political voice remains powerful to those who remember but is unknown to many. Nos Duraturi, choreographed by Lewitzky to Stravinsky's heroic "Symphony of Psalms" is a life affirming, triumph of brotherhood over violence. The work premiered at the 1984 Olympic Arts Festival in Los Angeles. 


Thodos Dance Chicago's recreation of Nos Duraturi is the fourth work to emerge from the company's American Dance Legacy Project, which seeks to keep the works of renowned American dance artists alive on stage.


Tickets to its Chicago premiere of Nos Duraturi, one of several exciting works sure to delight as part of Thodos Dance's 25th Anniversary FULL CIRCLE concert on March 11 at the Auditorium, are $29-$68. To purchase, visit, call (312) 341-2300 or buy in-person at Auditorium Theatre's Box Office, 50 E Congress Parkway, Chicago.


Published in Theatre Reviews



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