Calendar of Events
The greater Champaign County area is a hotbed for fun, local events you can't find anywhere else in the region. From music festivals, to exhibition openings, to cultural events, there's always something going on.
Please note, masks are required in all indoor spaces regardless of vaccination status and encouraged in outdoor spaces where social distancing isn't possible.
Spectrum Dance Theater: Strange Fruit
Krannert Center for the Performing Arts
500 S. Goodwin Ave.
Urbana, Illinois 61801
Under the visionary artistic leadership of Donald Byrd, Spectrum Dance Theater has become the preeminent modern dance company of the Pacific Northwest and has garnered praise worldwide. Byrd’s body of work is varied and impressive, spanning more than four decades pushing the boundaries of movement and message. The work may be purely an aesthetic experience for an audience to absorb his ambitious dance vocabulary, or it may wrap itself around a compelling civic issue, encouraging a community to examine ideas and attitudes that may impact lives long after the dancing has stopped.
Strange Fruit draws its title from the 1937 poem and song of the same name by Abel Meeropol that was made famous by the great jazz singer Billie Holiday. The lyrics are an extended metaphor linking a tree’s fruit with lynching victims. The impetus for this work is the employment of lynching as a tool of racial terrorism during the Jim Crow Era. For this dance/theatre work, the facts of lynching act as a springboard into a highly personal interior space and state of mind. Strange Fruit tracks Byrd’s feelings as a response to lynching and plays out as a series of dance/theatre vignettes. The piece is abstract but informed by the reality of these brutal acts of terrorism. Byrd and members of the company will participate in a Talkback discussion with audience members after the performance.