“To Lula With Love,” created and choreographed by Christopher Huggins, and an homage to growing up in Los Angeles, by Tommie Waheed Evans, recently graced the stage at The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. The show presented some of the most iconic dancers and choreographers our city proudly offers, including Tommie Waheed Evans; Lula Washington; Christopher Huggins; Esie Mensah; and Rennie Harris. Founder/Artistic Director Lula Washington’s brilliant work, “Fragments” was one of the standout pieces of the collaboration, revealing “a reaction to the chaotic times we live in,” eliciting a proactive empowerment amongst the audience. Artist/dancer Rennie Harris gives voice to “Reign,” a compelling fusion of joyous gospel meets hip-hop. Each piece reveals the incredible art maker that Lula is, and how her choreographic expression has informed countless dancers and influenced the aesthetic of decades of dance. Brava to the genius of Washington’s piece, entitled “King,” excerpts from the movement, a chronological journey through the life, struggles, and triumphs of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. during the critical time of the civil rights movement. This part of the show is clearly an emotional biopic account of King’s
highlights of his life in a vivid, larger than life display of talent. History and current events come to life center stage, amidst a simple set, as each piece tells a thousand stories. With articulate body movements and vivid facial expressions, each dancer tells a mellifluous story in his/her unique style and voice. Another repertoire included “Zoya,” a bold Afro-fusion work about self discovery by Esie Mensah. Part gesture, part dance, this piece brings destiny and personal strength to its highest potential. This period of history is a lot to pack into one single performance. This company, co-founded by Lula and Erwin Washington, is quite a tour-de-force and achievement in the art of dance.