njoy dramatic dance with Eisenhower Dance Ensemble (EDE). One of Detroit’s best dance companies is taking to the stage for “Two Decades of Dance in Detroit,” which will celebrate the company’s 20th anniversary with a program of new works and revivals of audience favorites from the past 20 years.
Dedicated to the performance of a diverse range of contemporary dance works, EDE is performing “Two Decades of Dance in Detroit” at the Macomb Center for the Performing Arts on April 16.
Now celebrating its 20th anniversary, EDE has been recognized as one of the finest contemporary dance companies in the country. The company has toured the United States, and internationally as far as St. Petersburg, Russia. Founder and Artistic Director Laurie Eisenhower and EDE Dancer Ahmad Simmons took some time off from rehearsal to discuss recent spring show “Motown in Motion” and EDE’s two decades of dance.
What did it mean to perform at the Opera House?
Eisenhower: I [was] thrilled to perform “Motown in Motion” at the Detroit Opera House. EDE is very much a Detroit dance company, and it [was] fun to take dance inspired by the city’s music to the heart of downtown. The Opera House is a Detroit institution. To perform there says that we have finally arrived.
What does dancing during this 20th season mean to you?
Simmons: Having the honor of performing with Eisenhower Dance Ensemble in its 20th season has proved to be an incredible experience. The chance to learn such a wide spectrum of work from past to present has given me a clear perspective of the vision that has laid the foundation for such a diverse company.
Eisenhower: I am so excited to have reached this landmark year. We have grown from a small company of four dancers on a pay-per-performance basis to an established, sustainable institution of professional dancers with a sophisticated board and supporting staff.
What does dancing in Detroit mean to you?
Eisenhower: Celebrating 20 years of dance in Detroit is particularly important at this time of uncertainty in the city. It has been wonderful to go on stage at home and across the country knowing that we contribute to the vitality of the city’s arts.
Simmons: It’s amazing to perform a full-length work about Detroit’s music in Detroit. There’s a true connection between the music, the location and the dance.
“Two Decades of Dance in Detroit” Performance
Macomb Center for the Performing Arts
44575 Garfield Rd., Clinton Township