Koresh Dance Company was founded in 1991 by Israeli-born choreographer and artistic director Ronen (Roni) Koresh. Known for its engaging performances and technically superb dancers, the company's critically acclaimed work attracts increasing audiences across the nation and abroad. Over the years, Roni has developed a vast repertory of work that ranges from explosive and passionate, to intimate and restrained. The company also presents work by guest choreographers including Ohad Naharin, Robert Battle, Donald Byrd, Itzik Galili and Paul Selwyn Norton.
The company has experienced tremendous artistic growth in the past several years and presents bi- annual performances in Philadelphia. In addition, the company has increased its national touring and has toured internationally to destinations including Spain, Turkey, Israel, South Korea, Mexico and Guatemala.
Koresh Dance Company has received much local, national and international recognition. The company has received several awards from the Philadelphia City Paper and Philadelphia Magazine and has been featured in Dance Magazine, the nation's premiere dance publication. Roni is a multi-year recipient of choreography fellowships from The Pew Charitable Trusts, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the Philadelphia College of Performing Arts. The company remains on the roster of Pennsylvania Performing Arts on Tour (a program developed and funded by The Heinz Endowments; the William Penn Foundation; the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency; and The Pew Charitable Trusts; and administered by Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation).
Opened in 1993, the Koresh School of Dance has remained dedicated to its goal of being a dance training center for the Philadelphia community. With two studios in the heart of Center City, the location offers over 60 weekly classes to both children and adults, whether they are beginners or professional. During a typical week, approximately 650 dance students pass through the studio doors. The school offers a wide variety of movement instruction including modern, jazz, ballet, pointe, hip hop and tap, among others.
In the fall of 2008, the Koresh Youth Ensemble was formed to give serious, young dancers more intensive training and greater performance opportunities. Under the direction of Melissa Rector, assistant artistic director of Koresh Dance Company, members have the opportunity to work with teachers from various disciplines of dance and to learn company repertory. They typically perform during the company's home seasons at the Suzanne Roberts Theatre, as well as at Koresh Artist Showcases throughout the year.
Koresh Dance Company is also committed to community outreach, while in Philadelphia and on tour. Touring activities include performance discussions, residencies, master classes and lecture/demonstrations. At home, Koresh Kids Dance brings arts education to underserved children in our community as instructors teach free dance classes to students in Philadelphia schools. This program provides invaluable tools that children can use in all aspects of their lives. Another element of our community outreach programming is the Koresh Artist Showcase. The showcases present work by local choreographers alongside Koresh Dance Company, giving artists in the community the opportunity to perform their work at no cost and to connect with a wider audience.