Skip to main content

Diavolo: Existencia

30 Years After the Northridge Earthquake

Original Score Written and Performed by Thana Alexa & Antonio Sanchez
Produced By The Soraya, Thor Steingraber Artistic and Executive Director

Fri Jan 19 | 8PM

This event has passed

Event details

Gravity betrays you and the ground beneath your feet is no longer reliable. Then what happens next? That’s the inspiration for Existencia, a new piece created by Diavolo | Architecture in Motion. Produced and commissioned by The Soraya, this special event brings to bear the company’s athleticism and unique brand of spectacle, as well as its humanity and grace. Joining the dancers onstage are drummer Antonio Sánchez and vocalist Thana Alexa. The jazz duo creates a new score and soundscape in collaboration with Diavolo, also inspired by the personal impacts of earthquakes on their families in Mexico City and Croatia.

In January, 1994, California State University Northridge experienced what has been called the worst natural disaster ever to hit a university campus in the United States. What followed next was an extraordinary act of perseverance. Within two weeks, classes resumed in trailers and outdoor locations. Months later, degrees were conferred, and a little more than a decade later, the campus was restored, an even better version than it was prior to the earthquake.

In 1994, Diavolo | Architecture in Motion had set up shop in Northridge, established by a recent CalArts graduate, Jacques Heim. The company was inspired to meet the moment with daring and innovative works that celebrate the human spirit. In 2011, when The Soraya’s doors first opened, it would become the cultural heart of the vast region, and Diavolo would find a regular home there.

In 2023, Diavolo and The Soraya join forces again for the world premiere of Existencia. This new work is a reflection on how a community resets and evolves in the face of disaster. Far more than the destruction is the resilience, humility, and selflessness born from facing the unknown and wrestling with mortality.

This event has passed

Ticket prices

$39-$129

Book tickets

Diavolo: Existencia

30 Years After the Northridge Earthquake

Original Score Written and Performed by Thana Alexa & Antonio Sanchez
Produced By The Soraya, Thor Steingraber Artistic and Executive Director

Fri Jan 19 | 8PM

This event has passed

MEDIA

About the Artist

Jacques Heim, Founder and Artistic Director

DIAVOLO | Architecture in Motion®, the renowned Los Angeles-based dance company, was founded in 1992 by Artistic Director Jacques Heim, an inquisitive guy who combined his academic background in theater, film, and dance with a passion for architecture.  Thanks to Heim and his talented crew of dancers, designers and engineers, the Company, for more than 25 years, has been applauded internationally for its ability to display surprising movement against a backdrop of elaborately designed space, all while entertaining audiences with what is, in fact, a new art form.

His skill in creating work that entertains is central to Heim’s artistic vision, one that combines elements of contemporary dance with martial arts, acrobatics, gymnastics, and hip-hop.  Throughout the years, the Company has captivated audiences in 250 cities and 14 countries and has performed to sold out audiences throughout the U.S.  International touring has included stops in Germany, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Holland, Austria, Italy, Spain, Australia, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Columbia and Chile.  DIAVOLO has also appeared at select corporate events and for special advertising and promotional engagements.

In 2017, DIAVOLO enjoyed an especially extraordinary season, highlighted by Heim’s creation of five new pieces for Season 12 of NBC’s hit series “America’s Got Talent.”  One of the Top 10 contestants to reach the show’s finale at Hollywood’s Dolby Theater, the Company was seen by over 90 million television viewers.

Through The DIAVOLO Institute, the Company also provides educational and outreach programs for people of all ages and abilities as it seeks to share the power of dance as a means of social impact. Two such programs are T.R.U.S.T., an initiative tailored for schools that explores the necessity of teamwork; and The Veteran’s Project, a four-month workshop using movement as medicine, that DIAVOLO has replicated in cities across the U.S.

Anticipating an exciting future of continuing to impact audiences throughout the globe, DIAVOLO looks forward to touring new work; expanding its Board; undertaking more corporate and customized commercial assignments; and reaching out to even more adventurous souls who want to join DIAVOLO on this marvelous journey.

About Antonio Sanchez and Thana Alexa

Antonio Sanchez: Born in Mexico City, four-time GRAMMY© Award-winner Antonio Sánchez began playing the drums at age five and performed professionally in his early teens in Mexico’s rock, jazz, and Latin scenes. He pursued a degree in classical piano at the National Conservatory in Mexico and in 1993

enrolled in Berklee College of Music and New England Conservatory, where he graduated Magna Cum Laude in Jazz Studies.

Since moving to New York City in 1999, Sánchez has become one of the most sought-after drummers on the international jazz scene. Following 18 years and nine albums as one of the most revered collaborators with guitarist/composer Pat Metheny, he also has recorded and performed with many other most prominent artists like Chick Corea, Gary Burton, Michael Brecker, Charlie Haden and Toots Thielmans.

In 2014 Sánchez’s popularity soared when he scored Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) which fetched four Academy awards (including best picture) and for which Sánchez won a GRAMMY© award. Additional film and tv projects include EPIX network’s Get Shorty and Hippopotamus among others. With more than a dozen recordings as a leader or co-leader, Sánchez’s recent projects include the acclaimed epic The Meridian Suite and the star studded Three Times Three. He turned his upset over social injustice into a tribute to every immigrant’s journey in his epic musical statement Lines in the Sand.

Sánchez is the recipient of four GRAMMYS©, three Echo Awards, Golden Globe and BAFTA nominations and has been thrice named Modern Drummer’s “Jazz Drummer of the Year.” He has been the covers of DownBeat, JazzTimes, JAZZIZ, Modern Drummer, Drum! and Musico Pro — among others. Sánchez’s new album SHIFT (Bad Hombre Vol. II) on Warner Music features Sánchez playing virtually every instrument on the album — in addition to being its producer. SHIFT features Trent Reznor, Dave Mathews, Kimbra, Ana Tijoux, Meshell Ndegeocello and more.

 

Thana Alexa: Surprising is the word that perhaps best describes GRAMMY©-nominated vocalist and composer, Thana Alexa, an extraordinarily creative force in music. Her two-time GRAMMY©-nominated album ONA (self-release, March 2020) was inspired by the cross generational and cross-cultural stories of the Croatian women in her family and evolved into an exploration of the experiences of contemporary women everywhere. Her desire to create more female-focused projects has only grown from there, including her trio’s 2022 self-titled album SONICA, an album fully engineered, mixed and produced by Alexa, released via Outside In Music together with GRAMMY©-nominated artist Nicole Zuraitis and first-call bassist, Julia Adamy.

One of Alexa’s most important and ongoing collaborations has been with her husband, four-time GRAMMY©-winner Antonio Sanchez. Together they have recorded more than six albums with each other’s respective groups, in addition to projects by other artists. After years of collaboration, they have teamed up to compose an original score for DIAVOLO: Existencia, a piece in which the drums, voice and physical movement are highlighted as the three most important forms of human expression to communicate the process of destruction, devastation, and community rebuilding.

During the 2020 Coronavirus lockdown, Alexa made headlines as a co-founder of what Rolling Stone called the first “virtual jazz festival” and fundraising initiative of the pandemic, Live From Our Living Rooms, which contracted over 120 artists, raised over $140,000, and helped facilitate grants to over 100 US based musicians in need.

Post pandemic, Alexa co-founded and is the artistic director of the Ponta Lopud Jazz Festival in Croatia, which seeks to connect the wealth of musicianship from the Balkans with some of the most well-known jazz artists from the U.S. and around the world.

About BANDALOOP & Amelia Rudolph

Amelia Rudolph focuses on art’s transformational and restorative nature to initiate a shift of perspective and ignite a sense of possibility.  A director, choreographer, and performer, she is best known as the founder of the dance company BANDALOOP, whose trailblazing fusion of postmodern movement, rock climbing technology, and a spirit of adventure is world-renowned. Seen by millions in various formats, including film, commercial, and social media, her work has been presented on Great Performances/PBS, the David Letterman show, 20/20, Good Morning America, the film America’s Heart and Soul, and CBS Sunday Morning, among others. It has also been featured in many national publications, including the Smithsonian Magazine, LIFE, and The New York Times Magazine.

The foundational influence of mountain climbing and unconventional use of gravity distinguish her choreography, which plays out in site-responsive dances in natural and built environments. Her work celebrates the human spirit and often focuses on environmental stewardship and social justice. Amelia holds bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Comparative Religion from Swarthmore College and the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, and in 2021, was awarded an honorary doctorate from 17, Instituto de Estudios Críticos, Mexico City. She has received over forty grants, fellowships, and commissions, is a recent CORO fellow, and serves on several boards in the field of the performing arts. To learn more, click here.

An innovator in vertical performance, BANDALOOP seamlessly weaves dynamic physicality, intricate choreography and climbing technology to turn the dance floor on its side, honoring nature, community, and the human spirit through perspective-bending dance. Founded by Amelia Rudolph in 1991 and now under the artistic direction of Melecio Estrella, BANDALOOP re-imagines dance, activates public spaces, and inspires wonder and imagination in audiences around the world. The company trains dancers and youth at their home studios in West Oakland and on tour and has performed for millions of people in over 300 cities in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, the Americas, and Asia. As creative and technical experts in vertical expressions steeped in its culture of safety, BANDALOOP is sought after by institutional, civic, and corporate partners like Disney and IMAX to design unparalleled experiences for stages and screens. Upcoming BANDALOOP collaborations include vertical movement and staging for REDWOOD, a new musical conceived by Tina Landau and Idina Menzel, premiering at La Jolla Playhouse in February 2024.

Related Articles

Director Selects - Where Were You On January 17, 1994?
Director Selects: Diavolo: Existencia 30 Years After the Northridge Earthquake featuring Thana Alexa and Antonio Sanchez Wed Jan 17 | 8PM and Fri Jan 29 | 8PM

Director Selects - Where Were You On January 17, 1994?

Noted Jazz Duo Antonio Sanchez and Thana Alexa, Bring Original Music to DIAVOLO and The Soraya’s “Existencia”

Noted Jazz Duo Antonio Sanchez and Thana Alexa, Bring Original Music to DIAVOLO and The Soraya’s “Existencia”

Director Selects: Diavolo | Architecture in Motion commemorates 30 years since the Northridge Earthquake
Diavolo EXISTENCIA 30 years after the Northridge Earthquake featuring Thana Alexa and Antonio Sanchez Wed Jan 17 | 8pm Fri Jan 19 | 8pm THE SORAYA

Director Selects: Diavolo | Architecture in Motion commemorates 30 years since the Northridge Earthquake

Director Selects: "Existencia," an exploration of human resilience

Director Selects: "Existencia," an exploration of human resilience

Northridge Quake 30 Years Later, Honored Through Art

Northridge Quake 30 Years Later, Honored Through Art

Director Selects: The launch of the Jolene Koester Music & Arts Education Endowment

Director Selects: The launch of the Jolene Koester Music & Arts Education Endowment

“This hybrid of movement and apparatus is unlike anything you will see anywhere. Founder and Artistic Director Jacques Heim has imagined and brought to life a world unto itself.” – LA Dance Chronicle

Upcoming Events

Culture Clash May the 40th Be With You

Culture Clash May the 40th Be With You

Sat May 4 | 8PM
Pacific Jazz Orchestra with Aaron Tveit

Pacific Jazz Orchestra with Aaron Tveit

Sat May 11 | 8PM

Get Ahead of the Crowd.

Sign up below to be the first to find out about upcoming concerts, on sale dates, and presales.

Join the mailing list