The famous Ronald K. Brown introduced his exalted dance theatre, Evidence, the year of 1985. Ever since the theatre exploded onto the scene, it’s been one of the leading dance companies around the world.
Prior to Brown’s theatre, there was no dance company performing earthy and original movements. From the reggae music, spirituals, to the blues and rock music that is enchanting as much as the dance moves are. This style of dance derives heavily from West Africa, with a medley of contemporary urban club dance moves used as well; Brown is known and respected for merging contemporary with such dance styles like crouched stance, loose and thrusting movements, and akimbo- which is very striking.
Brown, the Brooklyn native, founded Evidence in 1985 and soon collaborated with the likes of composer and designer Omotayo Wunmi Olaiya, the late writer Craig G. Harris, director Ernie McClintock from the Jazz Actors Theater, choreographers Patricia Hoffbauer and Rokiya Kone, and composers Robert Een, Oliver Lake, Bernadette Speech, David Simons, and Don Meissner.
In addition to Brown’s first-class collaborators, he’s won a voluminous number of awards and fellowships, including a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in Choreography, a National Endowment for the Arts Choreographer’s Fellowship, a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in choreography, a New York Dance and Performance Award, a Black Theater Alliance Award, the American Dance Festival Humphrey/Weidman/Limón Award, and fellowships from the Edward and Sally van Lier Fund.
Not only has Brown worked alongside such legends as those previously mentioned, but his brilliance has led him to be crowned Def Dance Jam Workshop Mentor of the Year in 2000, and in 2003 Brown was awarded the Black Theatre Award, named AUDELCO, for his amazing choreography for Crowns. Crowns, which was the off-Broadway production that was originally produced and presented by the McCarter Theater in 2003, was an original that was a hit that resonated with people from all over. Apparently that magnificent production wasn’t the only hot ticket in town, but just three years later Brown was awarded The United States Artists Rose Fellowship; he was of only four choreographers of 50 other amazing and gifted artists to receive the inaugural award.
Ronald K. Brown, a legend and a phenomenal individual who always exceeds expectations. In an industry where so many people are willing to break their necks to break into and stay there, Brown is a leader who still is the very reason why so many are fascinated by the art form. His work, commitment, and innovative techniques has molded an entire industry, and his work will continue to motivate entirely new generations to come.