Robert Moses dances again in ‘RISE’ 

click to enlarge Robert Moses
  • Choreographer Robert Moses presents two world premieres in his troupe’s 19th season program.
Acclaimed San Francisco choreographer Robert Moses hasn’t danced onstage in about a decade. Now, he says, it’s time to see what his older body can do.

“It’s a classic now,” he says. “Performance was a big part of my life for a long time. I’d like to see what’s in there.”

Moses will perform a solo when his dance company, Robert Moses’ Kin, takes to the stage this week in a 19th-season program at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. “RISE” includes the world premieres of “The Slow Rise of a Rigid Man” and “Profligate Iniquities,” as well as a reprisal of the company’s 2013 hit, “NEVABAWARLDAPECE.”

Moses, who serves as artistic director of the company, says most of its work is about people. “The Slow Rise of a Rigid Man,” in which he appears, is a complement to his earlier work “Blood in Time.”

“It’s about the nature of what it is to be a human being — to have failings, to have accomplishments, to want something for someone else and to want something for yourself, ” he says.

In an interview this month, Moses declined to give his age, joking, “I’d like people to come and not worry about me onstage.” At the time, he was still working on “Profligate Iniquities,” which is set to Sephardic music.

“These Sephardic romances are rich and inspiring polyrhythmic gems,” Moses says. He discovered the music — recorded by the Viennese chamber ensemble Accentus Ensemble — while researching other projects.

Moses founded his dance company nearly 20 years ago, and he’s been busy ever since. He has taught throughout the U.S. and currently serves as artist in residence at Stanford University, where he is on the dance faculty. He has received numerous honors, including four Isadora Duncan awards. Over the years, he has choreographed for the San Francisco Opera, Ailey II, Philadanco and many others.

In recent years, Moses says, the company has moved away from elaborate sets. It’s a deliberate aesthetic choice so the audience focuses on the dancers and the experience.

To deepen that connection, Moses is holding post-show discussions with audiences following performances on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

“I want people to walk away having had a full experience,” he says. “I want them to come and I want them to be moved.”


Robert Moses’ Kin: RISE

Where: Lam Research Theater, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 700 Howard St., S.F.

When: 8 p.m. Thursday-Sunday

Tickets: $25 to $45

Contact: (415) 978-2787,

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Cathy Bowman

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