Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago Celebrates 45 Years of Presenting Contemporary Dance With March 16 Event

Shirley Mordine, founder, chair, and director of the Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago from 1969 to 1999. (Photo: Charles Osgood)

The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago celebrates the 45th anniversary of its Dance Presenting Series on Saturday, March 16, 2019, with a performance and party at the Dance Center, located at 1306 S. Michigan in Chicago’s South Loop. The performance starts at 7:30 PM. Tickets are $10 for students, alumni, and seniors, or $20 for the general public. For tickets, click here.

Shirley Mordine

The event celebrates the establishment of the Dance Presenting Series in 1974, five years after the 1969 founding of the Dance Center by choreographer and educator Shirley Mordine as home of the new Columbia College Dance Department, which Mordine then chaired. In 1974, the Dance Center launched its presenting series to provide students and Chicago audiences with opportunities to experience contemporary dance in a professional setting.

Featured performers at the March 16 anniversary celebration include many solo artists and companies with close ties to the Dance Center of Columbia College as alumni, faculty, and students. Among them are:

Margi Cole

The Dance COLEctive, a dance company founded and led by Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago alumna and faculty member Margi Cole ’90, a graduate of the Dance Center’s BA Program in Dance;

Tosha “Ayo” Alston

Ayodele Drum & Dance, whose executive artistic director is Dance Center faculty member Tosha “Ayo” Alston;

Erin Kilmurray

alumna Erin Kilmurray ’08, a graduate of the Dance Center’s BA Program in Dance;

Qudus Onikeku

Nigerian-born, internationally recognized dancer, choreographer, educator, and activist Qudus Onikeku, a recent Dance Center practitioner-in-residence;

Emily Stein

Dance Center faculty member Emily Stein;

Summer Griffin

Columbia College student Summer Griffin, a senior in the Dance Center’s BFA Program in Dance;

Nana Shineflug

the Chicago Moving Company, a celebrated contemporary dance company founded in 1972 by the late Nana Shineflug, a longtime Columbia College teacher and Chicago dance icon; and

Shirley Mordine

Shirley Mordine

Mordine & Company Dance Theatre, led by the Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago’s founder and former chair Shirley Mordine.

The mission of the Dance Center’s Dance Presenting Series is to contribute to a total learning center for audiences, artists, students, and faculty by:

  • Presenting leading regional, national, international contemporary dance companies to Chicago and campus audiences in an environment conducive to innovation, inclusion, appreciation, and learning;
  • Building partnerships to strengthen Chicago’s diverse communities with dance-related initiatives;
  • Infusing the Dance department’s curriculum with world class guest artists in numerous performance residencies and extended teaching engagements; and
  • Practicing a sustained commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in our programming, community partnerships, and audience engagement programs.

Through its integration with Columbia College Chicago’s Dance Department, the Dance Center’s presenting season brings unparalleled experiences to students pursuing BA and BFA degrees in Dance through performances, classes, residency programs, conversation, and internship opportunities.

The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago is the city’s leading presenter of contemporary dance, showcasing artists of regional, national and international significance. Originally located in Chicago’s north-side Uptown neighborhood, the Dance Center moved to its current South Loop location in 2000. Today, the Dance Center offers a full range of programs designed to enhance and expand the quality and quantity of dance available in Chicago and the Midwest. For a complete chronicle of the Dance Center’s presenting history, click here.