UK Happenings

Bale Boone Symposium presents an 'Evening with Bill T. Jones'

Bill T. Jones
Bill T. Jones is recognized for his contributions as a dancer and choreographer.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 1, 2022) — Bill T. Jones, artistic director of New York Live Arts and artistic director/co-founder of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, will headline the University of Kentucky Gaines Center for the Humanities 2022 Bale Boone Symposium. The event will also include performances by Blackbird Dance Theatre and UK's Department of Theatre and Dance. The event will take place both in-person and via livestream 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13, in Haggin Theatre at Transylvania University. 

Jones is recognized for his contributions as a dancer and choreographer. Renowned for provocative performances that blend an eclectic mix of modern and traditional dance, Jones creates works that challenge us to confront tough subjects and inspire us to greater heights.

Jones has received major honors ranging from a 1994 MacArthur “Genius” Award to Kennedy Center Honors in 2010. Jones was honored with the 2014 Doris Duke Award, recognized as Officier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government in 2010, inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2009 and named “An Irreplaceable Dance Treasure” by the Dance Heritage Coalition in 2000. He is a two-time Tony Award recipient for Best Choreography for "Fela!" and "Spring Awakening" and received an Obie Award for the off-Broadway run of "Spring Awakening." His choreography for the off-Broadway production of "The Seven" earned him a 2006 Lucille Lortel Award.

“I first saw Bill T. Jones on stage more than 20 years ago when I attended a performance of the Bill T. Jones/Arne Zane Dance Company as a student," Gaines Center Director Melynda Price said. "It was the first time I had seen an internationally renowned dance company with bodies of different sizes shapes and colors. I later learned that this was the physical manifestation of Jones’ intentional efforts in dance and society to fight against any worldview grounded in exclusion, oppression or stereotypes. We are thrilled to bring this important voice in the world of dance and activism to our campus alongside members of our local dance community who share similar commitments to excellence and equity. “

This is a free, ticketed-only event open to the public. Tickets are available through EventBrite here.

Through the Bale Boone Symposium, the Gaines Center promotes dialogue, intellectual exploration and partnerships among campus, Bluegrass and Commonwealth communities by sponsoring an array of public humanities and arts events. These events are a testament to the influence and memory of Joy Bale Boone and George Street Boone, who were committed to the betterment of the humanities. The Bale Boone Symposium is supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

For more information on the event, contact Gaines Center Associate Director Chelsea Brislin at

Founded in 1984 by a generous gift from John and Joan Gaines, the Gaines Center for the Humanities functions as a laboratory for imaginative and innovative education on UK's campus. The center is devoted to cultivating an appreciation of the humanities in its students and faculty. The Gaines Center embraces varied paths of knowledge and particularly strives to integrate creative work with traditional academic learning.

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