As venues slowly begin to reopen after more than 18 months of Covid, the Richard and Karen Carpenter Performing Arts Center in Long Beach has just announced its 2021-2022 performance season. As always, the Carpenter Center is offering a wide range of performing artists and companies and tickets are now on sale for the fall performances.

This year’s season includes three dance performances. One returning company that always sells out the Carpenter Center is the fabulous Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo (January 29 & 30, 2022). Another Los Angeles favorite is A.I.M. by Kyle Abraham ( February 5, 2022 at 8pm) presenting An Untitled Love and also making a return visit is MOMIX (April 30, 2022 at 8pm) presenting its new production titled Alice choreographed by Artistic Director Moses Pendleton. Alice is described as “a stunning reimagining of Lewis Carroll’s novel.”

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo - Photo courtesy of The Carpente Center

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo – Photo courtesy of The Carpente Center

The all-male comedy ballet company Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, known fondly as The Trocks, was founded in 1974 in the wake of the Stonewall Riots. It’s early performances took place in New York City on a small stage owned by LGBTQ rights organization known as the West Side Discussion Group. That group was an offshoot of one of the first LGBTQ rights groups in the US, known as the Mattachine Society. PBS’s American Masters portrayed the story of The Trocks in the documentary Ballerina Boys ( ) which premiered June 4, 2021. The company is famous for its satirical portrayals of ballet classics Don Quixote, Giselle Act II, Harlequin, The Nutcracker, Swan Lake and many others. The current Artistic Director is Tory Dobrin and the Ballet Master is Raffaele Morra, both former dancers with The Trocks.

A.I.M - An Untitled Love - dancer Catherine Ellis Kirk - Photo by Carrie Schneider

A.I.M – An Untitled Love – dancer Catherine Ellis Kirk – Photo by Carrie Schneider

On the A.I.M. by Kyle Abraham website it states that the company’s mission is “to create a body of dance-based work that is galvanized by Black culture and history”. Among his awards, Kyle Abraham is a 2018 Princess Grace Statue Award recipient, a 2013 MacArthur Fellow, and a 2016 Doris Duke recipient. Although his company is based in New York, Abraham is currently serving as a visiting professor in residence at the Glorya Kaufman School of Dance at the University of Southern California (USC). Among the companies that have premiered work by Abraham are Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Paul Taylor American Modern Dance Company, and American Ballet Theatre.

MOMIX - Alice - Photo courtesy of The Carpenter Center

MOMIX – Alice – Photo courtesy of The Carpenter Center

MOMIX is a company of dancer-illusionists founded and directed by Moses Pendleton who was also one of the founders of Pilobolus at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire in 1971. One is told to expect the unexpected with MOMIX and that it will transport you into “a surreal and fantasy world. At the Carpenter Center in (Month), that will be the world of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland.

The Carpenter’s fall season will include An evening with jazz composer and musician Branford Marsalis and his quartet (Sat, Nov 6, 2021 at 8pm); a cabaret of jazz standards, Broadway showstoppers, and classic anthems performed by Storm Large ( Saturday, December 10 & 11, 2021 at 8pm); An Evening with Paula Poundstone, the brilliant comedian ( Saturday, December 11, 2021 at 8pm), and for the holidays Damien Sneed in Joy to the World: A Christmas Musical Journey, A celebration of gospel, jazz and classical holiday favorites, from Joy to the World to Handel’s Messiah (Sunday, December 12, 2021 at 2pm); and David Benoit’s Christmas Tribute to Charlie Brown featuring Courtney Fortune (Saturday, December 18, 2021 at 8pm).

Paula Poundstone - Photo by Shannon Greer Branford Marsalis Quartet Storm Large - Photo by Laura Domela Damien Sneed 06-David-Burnham 09-Allen-Harris-1 Anne Lamott - Photo by James Hall David Benoit 05-Courtney-Fortune Igudesman and Joo
Igudesman and Joo - Photo courtesy of The Carpenter Center

The 2022 Season will feature singer David Burnham celebrating Tom Jones (January 19-20, 2022 at 7pm); vocalist and guitarist Allan Harris and his quartet share spirited, soul-drenched songs from his latest album, Kate’s Soulfood (March 2-3, 2022 at 7pm); an evening of comedy with author Anne Lamott (April 23, 2022 at 8pm); and the return of the comedic classical duo Igudesman & Joo bringing their inspired zaniness and inventive energy in a show titled Play it Again (May 15, 2022 at 2pm).

The Richard and Karen Carpenter Performing Arts Center is located on the lower campus of California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) at 6200 E Atherton St, Long Beach, CA 90815. Tickets are now on sale for the 2021 season HERE.


To celebrate The Carpenter Center’s reopening and its fall performances, it is offering patron discounts when you purchase tickets to multiple fall events. Use coupon code PICK3FALL at checkout to save 5% when you buy tickets to 3 fall shows or use code PICK5FALL to save 10% when you buy tickets to all five of our fall performances.

This offer cannot be combined with other offers or modified after purchase. Valid at time of online purchase only. Programming subject to change.

For more information please visit The Richard and Karen Carpenter Performing Arts Center website HERE.

Written by Jeff Slayton for LA Dance Chronicle.

Featured image: A.I.M by Kyle Abraham – Dancers Tamisha Guy, Kayla Farrish – Photo courtesy of The Carpenter Center