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Nederlands to Bring Alternative to Center

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Orange County Performing Arts Center audiences will sample their first taste of alternative rock music this summer, the result of a late programming change by the Nederlands Dans Theater.

NDT will stage the United States premiere of a piece by choreographer Paul Lightfoot that has a taped score featuring music by Baroque composers and by the Cranberries, a band from Ireland. The troupe, appearing July 27-Aug. 3, initially had programmed the U.S. debut of a new work by its artistic director, Jiri Kylian. But Kylian felt that Lightfoot’s “Start to Finish,” an abstract piece premiered two weeks ago in Amsterdam, provided better programming balance, according to OCPAC spokesman Greg Patterson.

Lightfoot “is furthermore a choreographer that Kylian is very much promoting to the forefront of his company,” Patterson said.

Older Kylian works (“Bella Figura,” “Sweet Dreams,” “Six Dances,” “Soldier’s Mass” and “Symphony of Psalms”) and Lightfoot’s “Softly, As I Leave You” also will be on the NDT program here. Another Lightfoot work, “Skew-Whiff,” will be danced by NDT 2, a troupe offshoot, when it comes to the center in April.

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Three new faces and one familiar one will participate in Ballet Pacifica’s sixth annual Pacifica Choreographic Project next month.

Miriam Mahdaviani of New York, Stephen Mills of Texas, Dennis Wayne of Florida and Rick McCullough of North Carolina were chosen from 25 applicants to craft new dances for the troupe, which will perform them as works-in-progress at South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa on July 20.

McCullough has produced two works for Ballet Pacifica, “Nothing Less Than Every” and “By Lamplight.” Mahdaviani is a former New York City Ballet dancer who has choreographed for that troupe’s Diamond Project and for Jacob’s Pillow. Mills is resident choreographer of Ballet Austin. Wayne, a former member of the American Ballet Theatre and the Joffrey Ballet, led his own company, Dancers, for 13 years. The four will start working with Ballet Pacifica on July 2.

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