Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre Residency

March 24 – April 21, 2017
August 1 – September 29, 2017

Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre fuses music, dance, and visual art to explore and celebrate contemporary American society. Its professional Dance and Music Ensembles collaborate with one another, with visual artists and designers, and with the people and places of Chicago. The company’s multi-disciplinary artwork is theatrical and thoughtful, vivacious, and exuberant.

The company’s “bold...forays into multi-disciplinary works” were among See Chicago Dance’s top picks for 2016. Don’t miss their return to Old Town School of Folk Music.

Wednesday, April 20, 7:00 PM ·
Old Town School of Folk Music, 4545 N. Lincoln Ave.
Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre Inside/Out 2017 Season Kick-Off »

Don't miss this recap of 2016 and preview of 2017 by the unique multi-media ensemble Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre. Members of the company's professional Dance and Music Ensembles will perform segments from two 2016 works: Corner Sketches: A Tribute to Miles Davis and American Catracho. Company co-founder and Artistic Director Wilfredo Rivera will also invite you inside the season ahead – with glimpses of new works to be created Sherry Zunker and Joe Cerqua, himself and Clarice Assad in partnership with the Chicago Sinfonietta, and other work. The company's “bold…forays into multi-disciplinary works” were among See Chicago Dance's top picks for 2016. Come see what all the hype is about!


About Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre

Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre (CRDT) was founded in 1999 by Joe Cerqua, composer and musician; Wilfredo Rivera, choreographer and dancer; and Matt Lamb, painter. The company’s mission is to fuse music, dance, and visual art to explore and celebrate contemporary American society. CRDT pursues that mission by creating multi-disciplinary art work: collaborations among composers & musicians, choreographers & dancers, and visual artists, where the art forms are combined in cohesive performance pieces.

While the company’s art could be broadly categorized as contemporary dance and jazz music accompanied by visual art, each piece varies based on the collaborators. Musical influences of Latin and classic jazz, classical and pop music are often evident as are dance influences of modern, jazz and ballet. Visual art includes still and video projections of original and sourced art or live creation (such as a painter painting in real time). CRDT’s multi-disciplinary performance work is theatrical and thoughtful, vivacious and exuberant.

In 2015 CRDT launched Inside/Out– a six-month creative process and series of audience engagement programs which culminated in a fall concert series. Rooted in the company’s collaborative ethos, Inside/Out included dramatic expansion of CRDT’s public programming (from 4 events per year to nearly 20), the length of its active creative process (from 3 to 6 months per year), and increased engagement and marked growth of the audience for the company’s core artistic programming– which tripled from 400 to 1,300. Combining this audience with that for contract engagements and outreach programs, CRDT reaches over 19,000 people each year.

Inside/Out added 1-3 interactive events per month to CRDT’s annual programming complemented by online content and dialogue. Spring through fall the company creates and rehearses new work in a rehearsal studio, then brings audiences inside this process by going out to neighborhoods around Chicago. At Inside/Out events the company shares works in progress – performance pieces that combine music, dance, and visual art - instigates discussion of this art-work-in-process, and incorporates audience feedback as the pieces are finalized.

The company’s nearly 20-year history of multi-disciplinary collaboration combined with our strategic focus to involve audiences deeply with art and artists is rooted in our founders’ vision of what art can do - gather people to contemplate factors that knit our community together and differences that add complexity to our society.


For the latest news and peeks behind-the-scenes, find/follow Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (@cerquarivera). Check out archived footage and audio and sign up for e-newsletters at www.cerquarivera.org.


Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre’s mission is to fuse dance, music and visual art to explore and celebrate the cultural diversity of contemporary American life.

Artistic Director Bio

Wilfredo Rivera, co-founder of CRDT, is the company’s Artistic Director. He was a founding member of and former soloist with River North Dance Chicago. He was the recipient of an After Dark Award for outstanding choreography for "The American Plan" (2001), a Jeff Citation for original choreography in Bailiwick Theater's production of Nagasaki Dust (1997), and the Cliff Dwellers Body of Work Choreography Award (2009). Other Chicago concert credits include Trinity Irish Dance Co., Randy Duncan, Ginger Farley, Robin Lakes, the James Kelly Choreography Project, Salt Creek Ballet and numerous independent projects. Wilfredo was a featured soloist in River North Dance Chicago's Emmy Award-winning television documentary “Reality of a Dreamer;” has performed in productions featuring Diana Ross, Oprah Winfrey, Liza Minelli and Ben Vereen; and was a featured dancer representing the USA at the 1994 World Cup Soccer Series Opening Ceremony.

The Old Town School of Folk Music, Inc.
4544 N. Lincoln Avenue, Chicago IL 60625  •  773.728.6000