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Groundworks Dance Theatre (Cleveland, OH)

GroundWorks DanceTheater is imagination you can see. Critically celebrated as an “artistically significant” ensemble, GroundWorks explores the nuances of the human experience through unique and adventurous choreography. This exciting, eclectic work brings audiences face-to-face with fresh, fascinating performances of passion, intellect and humor.

Artistic director David Shimotakahara founded GroundWorks in 1998. From its Northeast Ohio base, this group of outstanding artists has emerged as the region’s premiere dance company with a reputation that continues to expand.  GroundWorks has introduced dance lovers and neophytes alike to an experience that is unconventional, yet deeply human and resonating.

Selected works from a diverse repertory, with choreography by David Shimotakahara and renowned guest choreographers, are available for touring.  Past guest artists include Doug Elkins, Kate Weare, Ronen Koresh, Lynne Taylor-Corbett, David Parker, Art Bridgman and Myrna Packer, Zvi Gotheiner, Alex Ketley, Gina Gibney, and Dianne McIntyre, among others.  This entirely original repertory includes an impressive range of work for up to 6 dancers, with music from classical to popular to contemporary new music.

“An avalanche of ideas takes flight—or hugs the earth—whenever GroundWorks steps onto a stage.” 
- Donald Rosenberg, Cleveland Plain Dealer

“It’s hard not to gush about GroundWorks. Its double trio of men and women dancers worked seamlessly as an ensemble so that the audience was able to concentrate on the dance story or vision being portrayed rather than particular personalities. One rarely sees repetition in their works; if it’s there, it’s special and exacting. These attributes, grouped with many others, make GroundWorks a leading and consequential force in the modern dance world.”
- Roger Durbin, Westside Leader & Dance Critics Association

Touring Programs

A full 90-minute program will be designed by GroundWorks to complement one of the featured pieces listed below.

Choreography by David Shimotakahara
Tours with 5 dancers
Set to the music of American jazz icon Dave Brubeck, Shimotakahara’s “Brubeck” highlights several of the artist’s classic recordings, which epitomize his career-long experimentation with unusual time signatures and his brilliant partnership with saxophonist Paul Desmond.  GroundWorks dancers are sent into wonderful motion and commotion around the infectious melodies and dynamic rhythms of one of jazz’s most enduring legends.

“My Hummingbird at the High Line”
Choreography by Doug Elkins
Tours with 5 dancers
This witty, classy and fresh new work by award winning choreographer and creator of “Fraulein Maria” is set to an eclectic mix of pop tunes from the Rat Pack and Frankie Valli and a Handel aria.  It employs Elkins’ unique style mixing classical ballet, martial arts, and hip-hop moves giving the artists cheeky interactions to convey the joy and heartache of romantic relationships.  Critics praise Elkins’ skillful craftsmanship, his humor and timing.

Choreography by Ronen Koresh
Tours with 5 dancers
Commissioned in 2011, Koresh’s “CoDa” is set to haunting and exuberant music by French composer Rene Aubry and communicates a full range of life experiences with passion and humanity.  Koresh has choreographed for dance companies throughout the U.S. as well as South Korea, Japan, Turkey and Israel, where he was born and raised.  He formed the Koresh Dance Company, based in Philadelphia, PA, in 1991. 


Performance Calendar

October 25-26


Allen Theatre, Playhouse Square, Cleveland

November 22-23


Akron Public Library, Akron

January 10-13



February 28 -
March 1


Breen Center for Performing Arts, Cleveland

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National Boutique Roster:

Astra Dance Company

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Groundworks Dance Theatre

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