This preview has been provided by Burning Coal Theatre Company.

Burning Coal Theatre Company and NC State Dance Program will present State of Dance, the world premieres of six new dance pieces created by six of the most exciting young, emergent dance makers in North Carolina November 6 – 8, 2014. The works will premiere at Burning Coal Theatre’s Murphey School Auditorium, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, November 6 – 8 at 7:30pm.  All tickets are $10 and are available at the door.

For a month this fall, Burning Coal Theatre Company will turn its Murphey School auditorium over to six emergent dance companies from North Carolina.  Funded in part by grants from the City of Raleigh Arts Commission, the United Arts Council of Wake County & Raleigh and the North Carolina Arts Council, Burning Coal Theatre Company and NC State Dance Program will collaborate to present a month-long series of rehearsals involving six interesting young choreographers in North Carolina.  The work done during that month will culminate in a presentation of work created over the preceding weeks.  The purpose of the festival is to put innovative minds in the local modern dance community under one roof for an extended period of time to create work, to perform, to train, to learn and to teach.


AWW Performance Company was founded in 2012 by artistic director Ashley Walls White and is based in Raleigh N.C.  The company strives to create and present new choreographic works that undertake some philosophical inquiry to arrive at a deeper understanding of the human condition through the choreographic process. Ashley was a member of the NCSU Dance Co. for seven years and has presented work at the American College Dance Festival, and with AWW Performance Co at the Greensboro Fringe Festival, SPARKcon in Raleigh NC, and in independently produced concerts throughout the state.

Black Box Dance Theatre is a Raleigh-based company with expertise in making contemporary dances that are relevant, inspirational, and an engaging way to participate in the world.  Michelle Pearson, 20 year veteran with Liz Lerman Dance Exchange, steps in as Artistic Curator and is joined by a diverse troupe (including a hip hop artist, a ballerina, an engineer, a former elementary school principal, and an Army Veteran/ Wounded Warrior) in bringing excellent dancing to everyday realities. BBDT dancers are Kathryn Auman, Mindy Crawford, Ann Huntley, Alfredo Hurtado, Natalie Morton, Sarah Putterman, Amanda Randall, Justin Tornow, Karen Warr, and Ron West.

The Carol Finley Dance Group works collaboratively under the direction of Carol Kyles Finley to create dances for stage and camera that are theatrical, physical, and visually specific. Created in 2012, the company has performed in New York, Seattle, at NC Dances in Cary and on the NC Dance Festival local and touring stages. Finley’s dance for camera piece “Little Utopia” created for CFDG was screened at the Boulder, CO Sans Souci Cinema Dance Festival in 2013.

Code f.a.d. Company (f.a.d. is an acronym for film—art—dance) is a group of artists committed to combining film, visual art, and dance into precisely designed performance experiences. Founded in 2008 by choreographer, filmmaker, and visual artist Autumn Mist Belk, Code f.a.d.’s mission is to create original movement-based art incorporating a variety of art mediums for the live concert stage, for gallery and installations settings and for the screen. In addition to professional performances, Artistic Director Belk and Code f.a.d. believe in educating our youth in dance and multidisciplinary artwork through lectures, performances, master classes, and residencies for K-12 students and the community. Over the past six seasons, Code f.a.d. Company has performed in 50+ concerts, created three evening-length dance works, completed four dance films, and taught numerous workshops. Belk earned her B.A. in dance and studio art from the University of Alabama and her M.F.A. in dance from the University of Maryland. In addition to leading Code f.a.d. Company, Belk is on faculty at NC State University, where she teaches dance, yoga, gymnastics, and other health and fitness courses.

Assistant Director of the NC State Dance Program and Artistic Director of Panoramic Dance Project, Tara Zaffuto Mullins has a B.A. in Dance from James Madison University and an M.F.A. in Dance from Arizona State University. While at ASU, she received many awards and grants for her research, teaching and choreography including the Faculty Women’s Association Distinguished Masters Degree Candidate Award for her work developing arts programs for homeless youth as well as the First Herberger College of Fine Arts Fellowship. Tara has taught at Henrico Center for the Arts, ASU, Mesa CC, St. Catherine’s School, the University of Virginia and most recently was on faculty at the Academy of Arts and Minds in Miami, FL. She has been a guest artist for Radford, JMU, East Central University, the Opera Theatre of Northern Virginia, the Latin Ballet of Virginia, Dance Arizona Repertory Theatre among other institutions and companies. Through the years, Tara has performed professionally with a variety of dance companies.  After serving as the Educational Programs Director for the Latin Ballet of Virginia, Tara developed her own education and service based Z Mullins Dance Company.  Recently, Tara was featured on State of Things to discuss her creation and development of a civil rights based dance theatre piece, Operation Breadbasket, that Panoramic Dance Project performed at NC State in the spring.  PDP has recently been invited by the Justice Theatre Project to perform Operation Breadbasket as part of the NC Museum of History’s Black History Month 2015 series.

Founded in 2012, Renay Aumiller Dances (RAD) has quickly gained momentum in the North Carolina’s dance community displaying keen wit and fluid physicality. The company is based in Durham, NC, and is comprised of professional dancers from the area known for their technical and creative capacities. RAD seeks to highlight the effects of locality, collaboration, and association in an effort to offer a point of entry into the poignant yet hidden qualities of the human condition.

Since its formation, RAD has been selected to present work at the American Dance Festival, the NC Dance Festival, the Greensboro Fringe Festival, NC Triad Choreography Showcase, and the Carolina Theater’s Dances for Small Spaces. Under the artistic direction of Renay Aumiller, they have presented two evening length works in the past two years, and are preparing for their third full length dance to premiere in June of 2015.

For further information about State of Dance or about Burning Coal Theatre Company, please contact Simmie Kastner, Managing Director, at 919.834.4001 or visit us online at


Burning Coal Theatre Company is one of Raleigh’s intimate, professional theatres.  Burning Coal is an incorporated, non-profit [501 (c) (3)] organization. Burning Coal’s mission is to produce literate, visceral, affecting theatre that is experienced, not simply seen. Burning Coal produces explosive reexaminations of overlooked classic and modern plays, as well as new plays, whose themes and issues are of immediate concern to our audience, using the best local, national and international artists available. We work toward a theatre of high-energy performances and minimalist production values. The emphasis is on literate works that are felt and experienced viscerally, unlike more traditional linear plays, at which audiences are most often asked to observe without participating. Race and gender non-specific casting is an integral component of our perspective, as well as an international viewpoint.