Company challenges assumptions about the possibilities of movement
Thursday, April 18, 2013
AXIS Dance Company
AXIS Dance Company is unencumbered by traditional notions of dance. Photo courtesy of AXIS Dance Company.

The University of Iowa’s Hancher will present AXIS Dance Company on Thursday, April 25 and Friday, April 26 at 7:30 p.m. at Space Place Theater, located on the first floor of North Hall on the UI campus. It is the company’s first Hancher performance.

Based in Oakland, Calif., AXIS Dance Company is one of the few companies that includes dancers with and without physical disabilities. The company grew out of a simple movement class which focused on exploring movement possibilities for people in wheelchairs. AXIS dancers have included people using wheelchairs, both power and manual, crutch users, and people with prosthetic limbs. The company has aimed to develop “physically integrated dance,” a dance form that uses physical limitations as a means to push choreographic boundaries, rather than viewing differences as an obstacle.

Redefining traditional notions of dance, AXIS Dance Company is committed to excellence in the physicality and creative content of their work. AXIS dances are virtuosic, athletic, unexpected, and thoughtful. The company has a repertoire of over 60 works, including collaborations with choreographers like Joe Goode, Margaret Jenkins, Bill T. Jones, and Stephen Petronio. The company’s performances have won numerous awards, and the company has toured extensively throughout the U.S. and abroad. AXIS also offers a wide range of education programs for youth and adults of all abilities, encouraging people to problem solve, think creatively, and experience movement in a new way.

The City of Iowa City Senior Center is hosting a workshop with AXIS Dance Company titled "Redefining Dance & Disability." Members of the company will present an hour-long program that includes dancers showing excerpts of current material, a presentation about their work, and a question and answer session. The dancers will showcase work and share company history as well as personal dance and disability history. This workshop will take place on Wednesday, April 24 from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. in the Assembly Room at the Senior Center which is located at 28 South Linn Street.

The performances by AXIS Dance Company are supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional support comes from the Hancher Partners and gifts to Hancher Circle through the University of Iowa Foundation.

How to get tickets

Tickets are $35; college student $10; senior citizen $31.50; youth $10 from the Hancher Box Office.

The Hancher Box Office, located on the first floor of the south end of the Old Capitol Mall near the parking ramp, is open for phone (319-335-1160 or 800-HANCHER) or walk-up business from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. weekdays. Tickets may be ordered online at Any remaining tickets will be available for sale one hour before show time at Space Place Theater.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all UI-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, contact Hancher in advance at 319-335-1158.