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Limón Dance Company opens Lafayette's Footlights series 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 8, at the Williams Center for the Arts, embracing the best of the late José Limón's work together with contemporary creations by some of this generation's great choreographers.

Carla Maxwell, artistic director of Limón Dance Company, will give a lecture about the restaging of the work ''Psalm'' and the creative process that brought Donald McKayle's work into the company's repertory 7 p.m. in room 108 of the Williams Center. The talk is free and open to the public.

An individual ticket for the performance costs $4 with Lafayette ID and $20 for the public.

A subscription to Footlights, which costs $59, also features Big Dance Theater's performance of Antigone: Songstress on the Edge of Heaven, Tuesday and Wednesday, Nov. 12 and 13; Urban Bush Women with guest artists from Mozambique, presenting Shadow's Child Friday, Feb. 7; and Rennie Harris Puremovement, performing Facing Mecca, which combines hip-hop, photomontage, videography, original music, and text, Tuesday and Wednesday, March 25 and 26. All performances start 8 p.m. The subscription represents a $14 savings compared to the total cost of the individual concerts. To order a subscription package or individual tickets, call the box office at 610-330-5009.

Limón Dance Company will present two major works: ''Cross Roads,'' first performed at Jacob's Pillow last year, with music by James Newton and choreography by McKayle; and ''Psalm,'' with music by Jon Magnussen and original choreography by José Limón, remounted by Maxwell and premiered last February at the Winter Olympics Arts Festival in Utah. The evening also will include three solo and small ensemble works — “Invention,” “Etude,” and “Transfiguration.''

The San Francisco Examiner has hailed Limón Dance Company as “a national treasure.” The outstanding classic works of creator/founder José Limón and other master artists complement the creations commissioned each year.

Under Maxwell's direction, Limón Dance Company is the living embodiment of the movement, technique, and philosophy development by José Limón and his mentors Doris Humphrey and Charles Weidman, whose innovative works are hailed as cornerstones of American modern dance. The company, whose diverse repertory includes not only the works of Humphrey and Limón, but over 50 works by more than 30 choreographers, has performed throughout the U.S. and at many of the world's major festivals and theaters.

Limón Dance Company was the first group to tour under the auspices of the American Cultural Exchange Program (1954), the first dance troupe to perform at Lincoln Center (1963), and has appeared twice at the White House (1967 and 1995).

The performance by Limón Dance Company is funded in part by the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts, with lead funding from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. Additional funding is provided by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and Philip Morris Companies Inc.

The nationally-recognized Performance Series at Lafayette attracts more than 10,000 people each season. It has been cited for performing excellence by the National Endowment for the Arts, National Dance Project, Chamber Music America, Lila Wallace Reader's Digest Fund, Pennsylvania Arts and Humanities Councils, and Association of Performing Arts Presenters.

The 2002-03 Performance Series at Lafayette is supported in part by gifts from Friends of the Williams Center for the Arts; by the F.M. Kirby Foundation; by provisions of the Alan and Wendy Pesky Artist-in-Residence Program, the James Bradley Fund, and the Ed Brunswick Jazz Fund; and by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, Pennsylvania Performing Arts on Tour, and New England Foundation for the Arts.

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