UPDATE: Dance Performances at Tenth Annual American Choreography Awards Announced

Matthew Rushing, Jason Samuels Smith, The David Parsons Company and Diavolo to Appear

Jean-Claude Van Damme, Carmen Electra and Other Celebrity Presenters Confirmed

Los Angeles, Calif./Oct. 5, 2004 – An impressive, diverse line up of show-stopping performances are confirmed for the Tenth Annual American Choreography Awards, a live dance extravaganza and awards show to be held the evening of Sun., Oct. 17 at the Orpheum Theatre in Los Angeles. The event honors contributions to the art and craft of choreography for the camera and recognizes outstanding achievement in feature film, television, commercials, music video, fight choreography and short film.

To honor the 30-year choreography career of Kenny Ortega (Dirty Dancing, Salt Lake Winter Olympics) there will be a special surprise performance that promises to bring down the house.


2004 Emmy-Award winner Jason Samuels-Smith will improvise tap to accompany a spoken-word performance from Norman Lear’s nonpartisan campaign “Declare Yourself,” aimed at motivating young voters to participate in this year’s election.

Ka-Ron Brown Lehman, the artistic director of the L.A. County School of the Arts, will receive the Educator Award with a tribute featuring former student and principal dancer Matthew Rushing of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and vocalist Nita Whittaker (Ten Commandments). Rushing danced with Ailey II and joined the Company in 1992.

“Caught,” a simple yet astonishing illusion of flight from past ACA winner David Parsons, artistic director and founder of The Parsons Dance Company, will be performed.

Diavolo, which likes to be known as "LA's riskiest dance company" will be performing an excerpt from its full evening work "Catapult," in which the dancers display strength and grace while navigating themselves inside, outside, on and around a 12 foot rolling wheel.

ACA Director and Choreographer Ramon del Barrio and former Hubbard Street dancer Francisco Avina collaborate on a spectacular opening number featuring 25 dancers from Celine Dion’s hit Las Vegas show, “A New Day” along with ten Los Angeles-based dancers.

Sideswipe, an extreme martial arts-based group that blends the traditional artistry of Karate and Tae Kwon Do with gymnastics and acrobatics, will perform a tribute to fight choreography.

Choreographers Rich and Tone Talauega, who created several of the dance sequences in Madonna’s Evolution world tour, will stage a hip-hop number featuring special guest Tommy the Clown and the Krumpers.

In recognition of Walt Disney, who will receive a posthumous Innovator Award, a collection of rare, memorable animated clips will be screened.

***UPDATE: Confirmed to present are Marge Champion, Roy Disney, Carmen Electra, Lainie Kazan, Jamie King, Randal Kleiser, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Jasmine Guy, Frank Langella, Kathy Najimy, Elise Neal, Valerie Pettiford, Nita Whittaker and Ben Vereen. Confirmed to attend are Cyd Charisse, Dule Hill, Fayard Nicholas and Raquel Welch.***

# # #


Credentialed members of the news media may apply for complimentary house seats at http://system1.ipressroom.com/pr/aca/info/Press-Registration.asp

Media Contact:

Eric Schwartzman/Hillary Smoot, Schwartzman & Associates, Inc.

(310) 789-2446

1925 Century Park East #2300, Los Angeles, CA