Dance Brigade’s 40th anniversary presentation “Gracias a la Vida: Love in Bitter Time” comes to Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Jan. 13-14. (Courtesy Robbie Sweeny)

SF’s wild, wonderful Dance Brigade going strong at 40

San Francisco’s Dance Brigade is marking 40 years of art and activism this weekend in “Gracias a La Vida–Love in a Bitter Time” at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater.

Dance Brigade’s indefatigable artistic director Krissy Keefer continues her mission to create socially relevant, technically sound, and, yes, fun works in “content driven” pieces combining ballet, modern, song, text, sign language and Taiko drumming. Additional dancers, musicians and guest vocalists Holly Near and Christelle Durandy round out the program.

The show’s creators call it “a celebration” of four decades of Keefer’s work and a response to today’s political climate, with free speech being eroded and artists more and more critiqued by government officials.

Three provocative works make up the show.

“Sin Palabras” is a reflection on the Edward Snowden scandal, using video, dance and a set made entirely of styrofoam.

“Deflection Defection Devotion,” about three male Cuban dancers who recently defected to the U.S., shows the human side of politics, particularly in the wake of the recent death of Fidel Castro.

“Gracias a la Vida” pays tribute to Nueva Canción and the “cross fertilization of socially conscious music from Latin America and protest music of the U.S.” In the dance, Keefer draws on works by Near, Silvio Rodriquez, Nina Simon, Marvin Gaye, Neil Young and Mercedes Sosa — artists who inspired her political and artistic life.

Near, Durandy, and salsa legend Patrico Angulo provide accompaniment to the dance, which addresses immigration, migration, war, racism and exploitation.

Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 13 and 3 and 7:30 p.m. Jan. 14 at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater, 700 Howard St., S.F. Tickets are $5 to $40. Visit dancebrigade.org or call {415) 826-4441.activismChristelle DurandyDanceDance BrigadeGracias a La VidaHolly NearKrissy KeeferLove in a Bitter Time

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Mayor London Breed said the city would pause reopening plans in order to “make sure we continue our cautious and deliberate approach.” (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SF slows down reopening after COVID-19 cases rise

Restaurants no longer permitted to increase indoor dining capacity to 50 percent

Toilet (Shutterstock)
Table salt and poop: Testing for COVID-19 in S.F. sewage

The City’s sewers could provide an early warning of fresh outbreaks

CCSF file photo
Workforce development fund to support training programs at City College

Supervisors back plans to use $500K toward economic recovery efforts through CCSF

Lakeshore Elementary School was closed in March shortly before SFUSD closed all schools due to coronavirus concerns. The district is now working to prepare all elementary schools to reopen by mid-January.<ins> (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
School district preparing buildings for hybrid learning

SFUSD plans to use 72 elementary schools and 12 early education sites for first phase of reopening

Most Read