By Heather Collins
Simcha is a Hebrew word meaning gladness or joy.
The Academy of Gregory Hancock Dance Theatre will present a cabaret-style production of “SIMCHA” Feb 3 to 18. It showcases Jewish culture and heritage and features a mix of Yiddish, Klezmer, Ladino and Israeli music.
The piece, choreographed by Artistic Director Gregory Hancock, was first performed in Latvia. The rehearsal space at The Academy of Gregory Hancock Dance Theatre will be transformed into a black box theatre. Hancock said the cabaret-style setting gives audiences an up-close and personal look at the performance.
“You can see the physicality more, hear the dancers breathing,” Hancock said.
The show also will feature a series of vignettes showcasing Jewish culture, including “1941,” a solo piece about a mother’s grief during the Holocaust performed by Taylar Green; “The Western Wall,” an abstract piece performed by the G2 dancers; and an untitled piece.
Hancock said the program is light-hearted, fun and energetic, with a few serious moments. The set features a color scheme of desert tones for the opening of “SIMCHA,” while the blue and white costumes reflect the Israeli flag.
Hancock said “SIMCHA” is part of the company’s commitment to presenting a variety of different cultures that also highlight the sameness of the world.
Performances of “SIMCHA” at The Academy of GHDT are at 7 p.m. Feb. 3, 10, 17 and 3 p.m. Feb. 4, 11 and 18. Reservations are required and seating is limited. Light refreshments will be served. Tickets are $35. The Academy of GHDT is at 329 Gradle Dr., Carmel.
For tickets and information, visit gregoryhancockdancetheatre.org.