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L.A.'s Viver Brasil wins National Dance Project grant

July 30, 2009 | 10:00 am


The Afro-Brazilian dance company Viver Brasil has won a $35,000 grant from the National Dance Project that will be used to fund the company’s latest work, “Alaafia," which will be presented as part of a national tour set for the 2010-2011 season.

This marks the second time that the L.A.-based dance company has received a grant from the National Dance Project, which is a program of the New England Foundation for the Arts. The first grant funded the company's 2007 tour of the Pacific Northwest and the Southwest.

"Alaafia" will be part of an evening-long performance titled "Feet on the Ground/Alaafia" that mixes traditional dance from Salvador, Bahia with capoeira, street parading and Carnaval dances. The new work will premiere in July 2010 and the tour will take place from October 2010 through April 2011.

Viver Brasil has performed for several consecutive summers at the Ford Amphitheatre, where it recently played "Feet on the Ground/Aiye" on July 3.

Other funders of the company's new work are the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the MetLife Community Connections Fund of the MetLife Foundation.

The company, which was founded in 1997, currently has an operating budget of less than $200,000 per year and features a corps of seven dancers.

-- David Ng

Photo: members of the L.A. based dance company Viver Brasil. Credit: Viver Brasil.