Upcoming Speaking Engagements with Bill

Tuesday 4/17, 8pm – Past Time
Toni Morrison Lecture Series @ Princeton University
In Past Time, Jones reflects on the moment he entered the conversation about creative practice, aesthetic hierarchy, history, and “the modernist project” from the point of view of dance and body-based art making. John Cage’s thoughts and philosophy on the subject of composition as reported in his book Silence figure prominently as Jones discusses the dislocation and discomfort he experienced when attempting to emulate Cage’s paradigm. Questions of identity, aesthetic value, and criticism will be explored.

Watch the Live Stream here.


Bill T. Jones to deliver 2012 Toni Morrison Lectures at Princeton University

Bill T. Jones to deliver the 2012 Toni Morrison Lectures at Princeton University 

“The Life of an Idea: a three-part presentation on belonging, appropriating and adapting in the context of time” 

 April 17, 19 & 24

New York, NY, March 26, 2012 – Acclaimed director and choreographer Bill T. Jones will deliver a three-part presentation for the annual Toni Morrison Lectures on April 17, 19, and 24 at Princeton University. Sponsored jointly by the Center for African American Studies and Princeton University Press, the Toni Morrison Lectures spotlight the new and exciting work of scholars and writers who have risen to positions of prominence both in academe and in the broader world of letters. The lectures celebrate the expansive literary imagination, intellectual adventurousness and political insightfulness that characterize the writing of Toni Morrison. Established in 2006, past lecturers have included Cornel West, Edwidge Danticat, and The Honorable Cory Booker. (more…)

Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company Announces 2012 Summer Season

Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company Announces 2012 Summer Season

Story/Time National Tour continues to Jacob’s Pillow and Wolf Trap

D-Man in the Waters, Spent Days Out Yonder, and Continuous Replay
at Saratoga Performing Arts Center

New York, NY, March 21, 2012 – Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, one of the most innovative forces in the dance-theater world, led by two-time Tony Award winner and Kennedy Center Honors recipient Bill T. Jones, announces its 2012 summer tour dates. The Company’s newest production, Story/Time (2012), will be presented by one of the country’s foremost venues for summer dance, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Becket, MA on July 25-29, and will mark the Company’s debut at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts in Vienna, VA on July 31. The Company returns to another summer home of the arts with a repertory program of musically focused works presented by Saratoga Performing Arts Center in Saratoga Springs, NY on June 7. (more…)

Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company in OUT magazine

The Dance Company was one of four top companies selected by OUT magazine to try out spring’s new silhouettes and graphic shapes.

Click here to check out more photos from the shoot.

Fondly Do We Hope… Fervently Do We Pray: A Look Back

Fondly Do We Hope… Fervently Do We Pray will conclude touring with a final performance at The Holland Dance Festival tonight.

“…the work of a mature artist at the peak of his powers…[Bill T. Jones] has created a thinkg of immense beauty and consequence.”
– Hedy Weiss, Chicago Sun Times

World Premiere, Ravinia Festival, 2009

New York City Season, 2010

Biennale de la Danse, 2010

Dive deeper here >

Live Arts Profile: Paul Matteson

photo: Philip Habib

Joined the Company: 2008

How many of pieces of Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company repertory have you performed?
12: Chapel Chapter,  Serenade/The Proposition,  A Quarreling Pair,  Fondly Do We Hope / Fervently Do We Pray*,  DuetX2,  Blauvelt Mountain,  Valley Cottage,  Another Evening/Venice (Copenhagen),  D-Man in the Waters,  Continuous Replay,  Spent Days Out Yonder, and Story/Time.

* Fondly Do We Hope / Fervently Do We Pray will have it’s last performance tomorrow, Sat, Feb 4th at The Holland Dance Festival.
More about the work >
A Good Man (documentary film chronicling the creation of Fondly Do We Hope…Fervently Do We Pray) > 

Which piece do you most enjoy performing?
The repertory has an incredible range of challenges.  I enjoy the range.  I think Blauvelt Mountain is an inspired Bill/Arnie duet and I always feel overwhelmed performing it.

Of all the places you have performed, is there one in particular you hope to return to?
I enjoy the smaller more intimate theaters.  I would love to return to that warehouse space in Venice and live/rehearse for a month or two.

How has New York Live Arts contributed to your life as an artist or your growth as an artist?
As I transition out of performing with the company this spring, I have the rare opportunity of keeping a teaching relationship going that will help me stay living in New York City.  It helps to have a comfortable home at New York Live Arts, I feel invited and able to rediscover my artistry at each new stage of my career.

What do you think sets NYLA apart from other Arts Organizations and presenters?
The creative growth of the artist within the community is first and foremost.

Paul Matteson, originally from Cumberland, ME, received undergraduate and graduate
degrees from Middlebury and Bennington Colleges, respectively. From 2000-2005, he was a member of David Dorfman Dance and Race Dance, receiving a BESSIE in 2002. He has also performed with Jennifer Nugent, Terry Creach, Peter Schmitz, Kota Yamazaki, Chamecki/ Lerner, Jamie Cunningham, Neta Pulvermacher, Susan Sgorbati, Helena Franzen and Keith Johnson. Mr. Matteson joined the Company in 2008.

01/24/2012 In ‘Story/Time’ Bill T. Jones’ company takes a waltz down memory lane

“If only we could plug in a cable, and download the contents of Bill T. Jones’ memory. The choreographer, now almost 60, has led a boldly adventurous life […] The choreographer shares a few of his experiences in “Story/Time” […] These memories, and some second-hand tales, are poignant, hilarious and sometimes terrifying.” – Robert Johnson/The Star-Ledger

Read the full review

"Story/Time" - Photo by Paul B. Goode


NYTimes on “Story/Time”: Metaphors of Movement Around the Spoken Word

“As Mr. Jones swept inexorably through personal anecdotes, art world gossip, biblical tales and poemlike meditations, his dancers came and went, tearing around the stage as they swept various individuals up in their collective arms, freezing briefly in tableaus, angling their limbs like vectors and moving through bursts of slippery partnering.” – Claudia La Rocco

Read the full review

Bill T. Jones, right, narrating his newest work, "Story/Time," which included Ted Coffey's score. Photo by Matt Rainey for The New York Times


Letter from a Danceaturg – No. 6 – January 22, 2012 – Story/Time World Premiere

Dear Lori: Happy New Year to you and everybody who reads this. It’s good to be back.

In the spirit of Bill T. Jones’ Story/Time let me begin by telling you that I arrived home last night from the Kasser Theater World Premiere at 9:34 p.m. – couldn’t stay for the Champagne – I really wanted to – and – true disclosure, I promised Bob Bursey before the show that I would stick around – but was too wired, my head was buzzing – and then, it took me until somewhere between 1:00 and 2:00 a.m. to fall asleep, and is now 5:56 a.m., and I’ve had two cups of coffee, and here I am about to try to stabilize my jittery thoughts.

Toward the end of the piece, Bill was telling a story about sitting in a doctor’s office waiting room reading an article in Art in America about the Glenn Ligon America show/retrospective exhibition at the Whitney Museum in New York City. My first “flash” thought was – “I went to that show last spring!…It was fabulous…unlike anything I had ever seen before…” and my second “flash” thought was to something Bill had told Felicia R. Lee in The New York Times interview last Wednesday, January 18, that “he has long admired [John] Cage and liked his insistence in Indeterminacy that audiences bring their own meaning to the work and discover the unity between sounds and stories.” And indeed – I had, at that very moment, it was about 48 minutes into the 70 minute work – brought my very own visual memories of the half-obliterated-jargon-phrased canvases of Glenn Ligon set against the pale walls of the Whitney galleries, and his glaring neon-reversed constructions, and his fake/authentic handbills mimicking vintage Wanted posters seeking escaped slaves. And, after I had finished this thought and its accompanying images in the Kasser Theater last night at about 8:53 or thereabouts, I then realized that for about thirty seconds I had stopped paying attention to what Bill was saying (sitting there, as he put it, “in the middle of the playing area,” dressed in a white, long-sleeved shirt, behind a simple desk with a pinpoint reading lamp, text in plain sight, feet planted firmly on the floor])and that I had also drifted away from following the sinuous movements of the dancers. (more…)

NYTimes: A New Work Spins Bill T. Jones Back Onto the Stage

“You might say everything up until this point in my life has been about this piece,” said Mr. Jones […]

Read The New York Times Feature

Bill T. Jones, with Jennifer Nugent, in rehearsal for “Story/Time,” set to premiere Saturday at Montclair State University. Photo by Andrea Mohin/The New York Times