Dance: Grupo Corpo, Byham Theater






PITTSBURGH—The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is pleased to present Brazilian dance company Grupo Corpo on Wednesday, January 18 at 8:00 p.m. at the Byham Theater, 101 6th St, Pittsburgh, PA 15222. Among the most renowned companies in the world, twenty-one sensational dancers fuse Afro-Brazilian forms like samba, bossa nova, and capoeira with classical technique and modern dance. Their program will consist of performances from their repertoire including Suíte Branca and Dança Sinfônica. This presentation is a part of the Pittsburgh Dance Council’s 2017–18 season.

Costumed in white while seamlessly moving across a stunning white landscape with a glacier-like backdrop panel, Grupo Corpo is on a blank slate and begins writing a new story in Suíte Branca. When the first guitar chords are struck and the silhouette of a ballerina dances through the air, a hint of mystery enters the scene. The aridity of an eerily white landscape underlines the enigmatic atmosphere. The Suíte Branca features signature scenography by Paulo Pederneiras, costumes by Freusa Zechmeister and lighting by Paulo and Gabriel Pederneiras. It also marked the debut of two new professionals with the company: young choreographer Cassi Abranches from São Paulo, and musician Samuel Rosa from Minas Gerais.

Dança Sinfônica celebrates the company’s rich history of more than 40 years by celebrating the best works from their repertoire. The score is a masterpiece symphony created especially for the company by Marco Antônio Guimarães and recorded by the 90-member Philharmonic Orchestra of Minas Gerais, Brazil. Dança Sinfônica, which is a celebration of Grupo Corpo’s four decades in business, was created based on the concept of memories. The theme, proposed by artistic director and scenographer Paulo Pederneiras, sees Rodrigo Pederneiras bring back his best representations of a whole vocabulary of movements, written over 34 years of residence as the company’s choreographer.  It is a recreation of his memories that use all the emotion accumulated over decades of deconstructing shape and form to develop a near synthesis of all his writing.

The set reflects these memories. Photographs gathered and selected by set designer Paulo Pederneiras reflect the daily lives of the artistic and technical team members – Grupo Corpo dancers, ballet masters, producers, teachers, set designers, and lighting and costume technicians. The revisited memories appear in the music, as well. The score follows the idea of a puzzle of memories. It presents a set of themes interspersed with the unique sound of the Uakti, with many of them evoking memorable sections of previous pieces. There is a considerable poetic license taken, along with quotes, overlays, subversions, and transcreations that Guimarães incorporates into the 42-minute score.

Tickets for Grupo Corpo at the Byham Theater currently start at $10* and are available at these Pittsburgh Cultural Trust official ticket sources:, by calling 412-456-4800 or in person at Theater Square Box Office, 655 Penn Avenue. Tickets for groups of 10+ are available online at or call 412-471-6930.
*All ticket prices are subject to change.

For more information, visit

Grupo Corpo
Brazil as a whole, with all its cultural diversity, can see itself in Grupo Corpo, the dance company founded in 1975 in Belo Horizonte. In a world where the speed of information is producing an increasingly homogeneous landscape, Grupo Corpo stands out for having developed a signature style of their own. House Choreographer Rodrigo Pederneiras is one of the few choreographers able to mix classic ballet and folk dances and then set bodies in motion that push the limits of technical rigor, while Artistic Director Paulo Pederneiras is able to transform choreography into a dance artwork. The balanced cast of dancers, stars in their own right, fine-tune each other with exquisite precision. When one sees Grupo Corpo dance on stage it is as if all questions concerning the transit between nature and culture are being fully answered. All facets of Brazil, past and future, erudite and popular, foreign influence and local color, and the urban and the suburban, come to being as art.

Pittsburgh Dance Council
The Pittsburgh Dance Council joined Pittsburgh Cultural Trust as a programming division in 2002.  The mission of Pittsburgh Dance Council is to bring the best contemporary dance companies from around the world to the Cultural District.  Each season, Pittsburgh Dance Council presents diverse, world-class contemporary works, including U.S. and world premieres.

Pittsburgh Cultural Trust
The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has overseen one of Pittsburgh’s most historic transformations: turning a seedy red-light district into a magnet destination for arts lovers, residents, visitors, and business owners.  Founded in 1984, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a non-profit arts organization whose mission is the cultural and economic revitalization of a 14-block arts and entertainment/residential neighborhood called the Cultural District. The District is one of the country’s largest land masses “curated” by a single nonprofit arts organization.  A major catalytic force in the city, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a unique model of how public-private partnerships can reinvent a city with authenticity, innovation and creativity.  Using the arts as an economic catalyst, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has holistically created a world-renowned Cultural District that is revitalizing the city, improving the regional economy and enhancing Pittsburgh’s quality of life.  Thanks to the support of foundations, corporations, government agencies and thousands of private citizens, the Cultural Trust stands as a national model of urban redevelopment through the arts.

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