Mariko’s Magical Mix, A Dance Adventure for families, up next at Jacob’s Pillow

Hubbard Street 2, the young second company of the world-renowned Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, will present Mariko’s Magical Mix: A Dance Adventure for their Jacob’s Pillow debut, in the Doris Duke Theatre, July 13-17, 2016. In collaboration with design studio Manuel Cinema, Princess Grace Award recipient and recent member of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago Robyn Mineko Williams creates a whimsical and family-friendly performance. Intertwining shadow puppetry and contemporary dance with an imaginative narrative, the piece is recommended for ages five and up, as well as the young at heart.

“Manual Cinema’s work captures the imagination in surprising and beautiful ways,” says Jacob’s Pillow Director Pamela Tatge. “Their partnership with the youthful artistry of Hubbard Street 2 promises us a magical evening.”

Led by Artistic Director Terence Marling, Hubbard Street 2 is known for its highly-selective six-person ensemble of young, artistically and technically mature dancers. The mission of the company is to foster artistic growth and hone the technical skills of the talented 18-25 year old company members, many of whom have gone onto become members of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, as well as other top dance companies worldwide. The Chicago Sun Times praises the consistent level of work produced by the company: “It’s called the ‘second’ company, but there is nothing second-class about Hubbard Street 2.”

Mariko’s Magical Mix: A Dance Adventure tells the story of Mariko, a young girl whose day-to-day monotony is transformed into a joyful adventure when she finds a collection of her mother’s vinyl records in their attic. The music takes Mariko on a surprising voyage where she discovers new friends, interesting machinery, and strange creatures. This journey ultimately allows her to discover a unique inner-strength and rhythm that she can use to guide her everyday experiences. In one 60 minute work, the six dancers of HS2 tell Mariko’s colorful story through beautifully mesmerizing movement, small gestures, and emotive music cues that are seamlessly integrated with cinematic shadow puppetry. Mariko’s Magical Mix: A Dance Adventure is praised for being a “gorgeous contemporary dance adventure [that] needs to be experienced by the whole family” (Kendall Mostafavi, DC Metro Theater Arts).

Choreographer Robyn Mineko Williams, named one of Dance Magazine’s “25 to Watch” for 2014, explores the link between choreography and childhood imagination. Williams’ performed as a company member for Hubbard Street Dance Chicago for 12 seasons until 2012, when she left to focus on her choreography independently. Since then, Williams has received commissions from Atlanta Ballet, Grand Rapids Ballet, Visceral Dance, The Nexus Project, and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, in addition to receiving a Princess Grace Award in 2015, and being named one of NewCity’s Players “50 People Who Really Perform for Chicago” in 2016. Dance Magazine claims, “There is sophistication about Robyn Mineko Williams’s work that many choreographers never quite attain,” emphasizing Williams’s sense of “inventive movement phrases, compositional clarity, and heartfelt emotion.”

Manuel Cinema, a Chicago-based performance collective design studio and film production company, brings magic to the stunning lines and silhouettes of the Hubbard Street 2 dancers through shadow puppetry and cinematic techniques, with manipulation of overhead projectors, multiple screens, puppets, dancers, and live-feed cameras. Managing Artistic Director, Kyle Vegter’s unique music direction and sound design fuses jazz, rock, and pop, with new music composed for the production, and plays an integral role in this multi-sensory performance. The piece was co-commissioned by The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Hubbard Street 2, and premiered October 2015 at The Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.


Hubbard Street 2 was established in 1997 by Hubbard Street Dance Chicago’s founder Lou Conte and former Associate Director of HSDC Julie Nakagawa, to prepare young dancers for careers in contemporary dance, creating a dynamic environment for technical and artistic growth. To date, 15 members of the early career ensemble have advanced to become members of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, while countless others have joined leading dance companies worldwide. The company is dedicated to touring domestically and internationally, to help its dancers gain exposure and international scope. Since 2013, the company has been under the direction of former Hubbard Street Dance Chicago member, Terence Marling. Now in its 19th season, HS2 has become an important component of Hubbard Street Dance’s community engagement programs, committed to innovative family programming and youth arts education. Mariko’s Magical Mix: A Dance Adventure marks Hubbard Street 2’s second children’s programming endeavor, with critically acclaimed Harold and the Purple Crayon: A Dance Adventure, as its first. Through this, Hubbard Street Dance exposes children to contemporary dance at a young age by engaging a sense of perception, research, reflection, discussion, and interpretation, as well as encouraging development of analytical and abstract thinking skills.

In addition, the company provides residencies to three burgeoning choreographers annually under its International Commissioning Project (initiated in 1999 as the National Choreographic Competition, and renamed in 2014). Around 45 new works have been created for HS2 as part of this initiative. Other notable recipients of this grant to date include Alvin Ailey Artistic Director Robert Battle, Aszure Barton, Jessica Lang, and 2016 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award recipient Camille A. Brown.


While parent company Hubbard Street Dance Chicago has been presented by the Pillow over a dozen times since 1983, this is Hubbard Street 2’s first performance at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. Artistic Director Terence Marling and choreographer Robyn Mineko Williams have both performed multiple times on Pillow stages. HS2 company member since 2013, Adrienne Lipson, is also alumna of The School at Jacob’s Pillow. Hubbard Street Dance Chicago will be performing the same week in the Ted Shawn Theatre.

Performance and ticket information

Hubbard Street 2 in Mariko’s Magical Mix: A Dance Adventure 
Doris Duke Theatre

Wednesday, July 13, 4:15 pm

Thursday, July 14 & Friday, July 152:15pm & 4:15pm

Saturday, July 1611:15am & 4:15pm

Sunday, July 1711:15am & 2:15pm


  • Free Pre-Show Talks with Jacob’s Pillow Scholar-in-Residence Maura Keefe are offered on the porch of the Doris Duke Theatre 30 minutes before each performance
  • Free Post-Show Talk with artists of Mariko’s Magical Mix: A Dance Adventure will take place immediately following the 4:15 performance on Thursday, July 14 at the Doris Duke Theatre.
  • Tickets start at $25 for adults, $10 for youth. Now on sale online at, via phone at 413.243.0745, or in person at the Jacob’s Pillow Box Office.
  • Box Office hours:  Wednesday– Saturday, 11am-8pm; Sun, noon-5pm; Tues, 11am-5pm

Pillow Members receive exclusive benefits. To become a Member, call 413.243.9919×125.

Jacob’s Pillow is located at 358 George Carter Road in Becket, MA, 01223 (10 minutes east on Route 20 from Mass Pike Exit 2). The Jacob’s Pillow campus and theaters are handicapped accessible.


Hubbard Street Dance Chicago

July 13-17Wednesday-Saturday 8pmThursday, Saturday, and Sunday 2pm

Ted Shawn Theatre

Chicago-based with a world-class reputation, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago always brings exquisite dancers, bold new work, and breathtaking contemporary performances. They perform Solo Echo, a gripping interpretation of two Johannes Brahms sonatas for cello and piano, created by Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award-winner and Artistic Director of Kidd Pivot, Crystal Pite. The program also includes master choreographer William Forsythe’s N.N.N.N., a dance filled with intricate gestures and delightfully complex rhythms, as well as an excerpt from Alejandro Cerrudo’s Second to Last, Crystal Pite’s A Picture of You Falling, and Robyn Mineko Williams’Waxing Moon. Tickets start at $45.

Free Inside/Out Performance: DanceTheYard

Wednesday, July 13, 6:15pm

Marcia & Seymour Simon Performance Space

Led by The Yard’s Executive Director Alison Manning and Director of Island Programs & Education Jesse Keller, DanceTheYard (DTY) is the resident dance collective of The Yard at Martha’s Vineyard. In an effort to support emerging choreographers, DTY’s directors work with a collective of professional artists to create an emerging body of work for presentation locally and nationally. FREE

Free Inside/Out Performance: Kevin Jenkins

Thursday, July 14, 6:15pm

Marcia & Seymour Simon Performance Space

Prolific choreographer and faculty member of the Boston Ballet School, Kevin Jenkins has choreographed for Western Ballet, Convergence Ballet, Terpsicore Dance Company, Mirable Ballet, Bellingham Repertory Dance, and the School of Ballet Arizona among others. This presentation showcases Jenkin’s work from the last two years, highlighting his signature musicality in works ranging from contemporary to jazz and neo-classical ballet.FREE

Free PillowTalk: Ann Hutchinson Guest’s Dancing Life

Friday, July 15, 5pm

It has been 75 years since Ann Hutchinson Guest first studied at Jacob’s Pillow, and she has been at the forefront of dance ever since, now recounting old and new adventures. FREE

Free Inside/Out Performance: SOLE Defined

Friday, July 15, 6:15 pm

Marcia & Seymour Simon Performance Space

Founded in 2011, SOLE Defined is a percussive dance company based in Washington, DC and led by Cirque du Soleil’s Ryan K. Johnson and award winning choreographer Quynn Johnson. Tap dance meets body percussion in SOLE Defined’s interactive and family-friendly performance of MOTAPs. A fusion of Motown’s top hits and dynamic movement, the show features traditional sand dance, tap, stepping, and body percussion. FREE

Free PillowTalk: Curriculum in Motion

Saturday, July 16, 4pm

For more than 20 years, Jacob’s Pillow has been bringing dance into Berkshire County schools in groundbreaking ways. Both the past successes and future plans are outlined in this presentation. FREE

Free Inside/Out Performance: The School at Jacob’s Pillow

Saturday, July 16, 6:15 pm

Marcia & Seymour Simon Performance Space

Dancers from the Contemporary Program of The School at Jacob’s Pillow present contemporary variations coached by program director Milton Myers and esteemed faculty member and Colombo-Belgian choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa. FREE

Sunday Master Class with Festival Artist: Terence Marling

Sunday, July 17, 10am

Doris Duke Theater

Director Terence Marling of Hubbard Street 2 will teach a master class open to all intermediate and advanced dancers ages 16 and over. Pre-registration is required, call 413.243.9919 x5 the week of the class to register. Quiet observation is welcome; $15 per class of $80 for a 6-class card. Participants younger than 18 will require a parent’s signature on a liability waiver.

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