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The College of Arts Sciences

Renowned dance company brings John Coltrane’s musical legacy to life Oct. 25

By: Lindsey White,  Department of Performing and Media Arts
October 12, 2016

When: Tuesday, October 25, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Kiplinger Theatre, Schwartz Center for the Performing Arts


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The music of innovative jazz musician John Coltrane, with its experimental, improvisational sound and political and spiritual inspirations, serves as the soundtrack for Brooklyn-based dance company Urban Bush Women in Walking with ‘Trane. The renowned troupe will present Walking with ‘Trane on Tuesday, October 25, at 7:30 p.m. in the Kiplinger Theatre at the Schwartz Center for the Performing Arts, 430 College Ave., Ithaca. The dance performance is cosponsored by Cornell University’s Department of Performing and Media Arts, the Feminist, Gender & Sexuality Studies program, and the Cornell Council for the Arts.

Walking with ‘Trane is patterned like a two-sided album, with “Side A: Just a Closer Walk with ‘Trane” drawing on the history of Coltrane’s music, as well as the broader traditions of spirituals, blues, free jazz, and more. “Side B: Freed(Om)” features original music by Grammy-award-winning composer/pianist George O. Caldwell performed live, inspired by John Coltrane’s 1965 album A Love Supreme. With choreography by Urban Bush Women founder and artistic director Jawole Willa Jo Zollar and associate artistic director and dancer Samantha Speis, the dancers embody the collaborative and improvisational nature of Coltrane’s musical legacy.

Urban Bush Women seeks to galvanize artists, activists, audiences, and communities through performances, artist development, education, and community engagement. Its ongoing initiatives include the Summer Leadership Institute (SLI), Builders, Organizers & Leaders through Dance (BOLD), and the developing Choreographic Center. Urban Bush Women works to affect the overall ecology of the arts by promoting artistic legacies; projecting the voices of the under-heard and people of color; bringing attention to and addressing issues of equity in the dance field and throughout the United States; and by providing platforms and serving as a conduit for culturally and socially relevant experimental art makers.

Tickets for the one-night-only performance of Walking with ‘Trane are available at or by visiting the Schwartz Center box office Tuesday–Saturday, 2:30 p.m.–8:00 p.m. Adult tickets are $25.00; tickets for seniors, students, and Cornell University students, staff, and alumni are $20.00.

Urban Bush Women by Gennia Cui