Theater & art

Jacob’s Pillow announces 2013 season

Israeli company L-E-V will make its US debut with “HOUSE” at the 2013 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival.
Gadi Dago
Israeli company L-E-V will make its US debut with “HOUSE” at the 2013 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival.

Fifty-two companies spanning seven countries will make their way to Becket next summer for Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival’s 81st season. On Wednesday the festival announced its 2013 schedule, a bill that includes ballet, hip-hop, and some works that might not be called dance.

The lineup features the US debut of L-E-V, a recently formed Israeli-based company headed by Gai Behar and Sharon Eyal, the former associate artistic director and house choreographer of Batsheva Dance Company. The company will perform “HOUSE” in the Ted Shawn Theatre July 24-28.

“It’s a very strong work. When you say a work is very strong, that’s going to attract a lot of people, but some people are maybe a little bit scared,” Jacob’s Pillow executive and artistic director Ella Baff said in a telephone interview.


“LEO,” a work by the German company Circle of Eleven, will push visitors’ perception of dance, Baff said. It will run June 26-30 in the Doris Duke Theatre, and combines live performance and video.

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“This is physical theater. Is it a dance company? No. But there is movement the entire way through. Really imaginative movement,” Baff said. “It turns notions of what dance is on its head.”

The season will also feature the return of Compagnie Käfig, a group of hip-hop dancers from Rio de Janeiro who sold out six performances at this year’s festival. The company will perform June 26-30 in the Ted Shawn Theatre.

Following its June 15 gala, the festival will open with a return performance by Dance Theatre of Harlem June 19-23 at the Ted Shawn Theatre. That stage will also host the New York-based Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet July 3-7; Brazilian hip-hop group Companhia Urbana de Dança July 10-14; the British Columbian contemporary company Ballet BC July 17-21; French contemporary ballet company 3e étage July 31-Aug. 4; Montreal’s O Vertigo Danse Aug. 7-11; and the premiere of contemporary ballet star Wendy Whelan’s “Restless Creature” Aug. 14-18. The Martha Graham Dance Company will close the Ted Shawn season Aug. 21-25 with Graham’s interpretation of “The Rite of Spring.”

The Doris Duke Theatre will host a work by Indian-born dancer Shantala Shivalingappa July 3-7; the Brian Brooks Moving Company July 10-14; Tere O’Connor Dance July 17-21; tap company Dorrance Dance July 24-28; Los Angeles-based BODYTRAFFIC July 31-Aug. 4; Jessica Lang Dance Aug. 7-11; and Montreal-based La Otra Orilla Aug. 14-18. Kyle Abraham, who won the 2012 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award, will bring his company,, to finish the season Aug. 21-25.


This year’s 80th anniversary season attracted 90,000 visitors over the course of the festival.

“There were things that I did do for the 80th that were meant to really speak to the variety of dance and honor certain motifs of our history,” Baff said. “I’m carrying that forward.”

Andrew Doerfler can be reached at