Malashock Dance Honors the Music of Songwriter Leonard Cohen

San Diego, CA (PressExposure) April 08, 2009 -- Malashock Dance is proud to announce their first production created to the work of celebrated songwriter, Leonard Cohen, for the world premiere of Shadow of Mercy.

Emerging the same weekend as Leonard Cohen's highly anticipated début at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival and following the San Diego leg of his world tour, Shadow of Mercy will pay reverence to a legend among us. Fifteen years after his last American tour, Cohen is being supported by his fans of yesteryear along with a new following who have come to appreciate his mastery thanks to popularization of his songs through vehicles like American Idol performances, modern day artist recordings and a 2008 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Shadow of Mercy is the brainchild of John Malashock - choreographer and Cohen enthusiast. The exclusive production is a poetic and powerful dance theater performance that blends the dark and humorous lyrics of Leonard Cohen with the dramatic, provocative and deeply human choreography of Malashock. Shadow of Mercy is sure to capture hearts of all ages during this resurgence of Leonard Cohen's music.

Possessing a career-long affinity for Cohen's work, Malashock has dedicated the production of Shadow of Mercy to celebrating Cohen's lyrical mastery. "We both have a deep spiritual longing that, ultimately, finds its voice through our art," says Malashock. "We both use a blend of darkness and humor as well as recurrent themes of the spiritual side of beauty and sexuality in our work. ."

The music behind Shadow of Mercy was chosen from Cohen's repertoire by Malashock due to the emotions the pieces evoked. "For this production I was seeking songs that strongly suggested movement, unique characters or story lines," says Malashock. There were lots of other songs I considered, but found that many of them just didn't 'speak' to me of a way to add something powerful through dance. Several of the songs sound a bit unlikely for dance but, in some ways, those have been the most potent pieces to work with. Ultimately, it is just a very intuitive process to feel which ones have choreographic potential."

The title of the production originates from Cohen's famous song, Sisters of Mercy. The combination of the commanding imagery that 'mercy' suggests and the dark shadowy creations of both artists resulted in the birth of Shadow of Mercy. Click here to listen to the song list of Shadow of Mercy on

Book of Longing: I Can't Make the Hills (Philip Glass with Cohen reciting) First We Take Manhattan Everybody Knows Take this Waltz By the Rivers Dark Famous Blue Raincoat The Gypsy's Wife Tacoma Trailer (instrumental) Story of Isaac (Suzanne Vega cover) Tower of Song In My Secret Life Waiting for the Miracle The Future It Will Be Your Will Closing Time

Shadow of Mercy will have its premiere performances on April 17-19 at the Garfield Theater at the Lawrence Family Jewish Community Center in La Jolla. These will include a student outreach performance for Young Audiences of San Diego, Friday, April 17th at 9:30 a.m. and 8 p.m. discounted sneak peek and social event; Saturday opening night performance April 18th at 8 p.m.; and Sunday twilight performance April 19th at 5 p.m. Tickets for the Saturday and Sunday performances will range from $20 - $32, with $16 tickets available for students. For the Friday sneak peek performances, tickets will range from $18 - $28, with $14 tickets available for students.

For those who are interested in viewing a behind-the-scenes preview or desire the experience of a more intimate exhibition, Malashock Dance will also be organizing an in-studio series on Saturday, March 28th at 7 p.m. and Sunday, March 29th at 5 p.m. The Malashock Dance Studio Series provides an exclusive look at the dancers and the choreographer preparing for their April world premiere performance at Dance Place San Diego, 2650 Truxtun Road, Studio 200. Admission is $10 and includes conversations with the choreographer and the dancers, as well as a post-show reception.

To purchase tickets, see upcoming events, read the Malashock Blog or view previous performances, visit:

• Box Office • Malashock Dance Home • Malashock Blog • Malashock on YouTube

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Press Release Submitted On: April 08, 2009 at 1:19 pm
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