Houston Contemporary Dance Company Presents The House

December 12th, 2023
1302 Houston Ave, #300
Houston, TX 77007
(713) 804-6646


Contact: Marlana Doyle, (713) 804-6646 ext 3, marlana@houstoncontemporary.org


Photos by Lawrence Knox

FEBRUARY 8-10TH, 2024 5PM; 7PM;
TICKETS: $35-50

Houston, TX – Houston Contemporary Dance Company will present our 1st ever immersive dance piece titled The House, which takes place on February 8th, 9th and 10th, 2024 at 5PM; 7PM and 9PM to continue our 5th Season. Presented at the historic Heights Ironworks, Guest Choreographer, Nao Kusuzaki will create and explore the juxtaposition of Houston native, Barbra Jordan and acclaimed author, Harper Lee where the audience becomes part of an intimate gathering, immersed in the atmosphere of the guest house- where the two guests are staying- with each room holding its own secrets and stories.

The House is funded in part by the Houston Arts Alliance through the City of Houston, Texas Commission on the Arts, Mid America Arts Alliance and Dance Source Houston. We would also like to Thank Bob Boblitt, Bobbie Nau, Shirley and Brian Colona, Remington and Sarah Tonar, Bank of Texas, Amegy Bank, USI and Jackson Walker for their support this Season.

Read more about the Guest Choreographer, Nao Kusuzaki below:

Nao Kusuzaki is dance educator, dancer, choreographer, and mom to 2 girls. Originally from Japan, she began her ballet lessons at 3 years old, then continued her studies starting at ten in the U.S. with The Washington School of Ballet and Boston Ballet School. Her professional career started with Boston Ballet in 2001. In 2004 she joined Houston Ballet, and was promoted to Soloist in 2009. She has danced numerous leading roles in both classical and contemporary repertoire. Some of her featured roles include: The Sugarplum Fairy and The Snow Queen in The Nutcracker, Nikiya in La Bayadere, Madame Butterfly in Madame Butterfly, Lilac Fairy in Sleeping Beauty, Odette and Odile in Swan Lake, Jiri Kylian’s Petite Mort, Sinfonietta, and Falling Angels, Stanton Welch’s Tu-Tu, William Forsythe’s In the Middle Somewhat Elevated, Twyla Tharp’s In the Upper Room, Christopher Wheeldon’s Rush, and Mark Morris’s Pacific. In 2019, she was invited to stage Swan Lake and perform Odette/Odile with Victoria Ballet Theater. In addition to her role as a dance artist, Nao collaborates with the community, producing Dance for Hope, a benefit Concert in response to Japan Earthquake of 2011, co-creating TSURU with Asia Society Texas in 2015, and directing/dancing in The 45th Anniversary Ballet Performance celebrating Houston and Chiba Sister City Relations, which premiered in July 22, 2017. In November, 2017, she revived TSURU at the Miller Outdoor Theater, Houston, TX, where Nao was commended by the Consulate General, Japan. In 2023, Nao was choreographer and artistic director for the work commissioned by Asia Society Texas, GENJI, which premiered to sold out shows. Her original works have also been selected for the Regional Dance America Southwest Festival 2020 and 2023. Nao is passionate about sharing her knowledge and experience to the next generation of dancers, and is a certified GYROTONIC® instructor since 2008. Using its movement methodology, she guides dancers to increase their range of motion, joint stability, and strength safely and holistically.


Houston Contemporary aims to lead and innovate performing arts in Houston by drawing upon the director’s long tradition of inclusiveness and diversity within all facets of the organization. HCDC sets itself apart by employing high caliber performing and choreographic artists from across the country. In setting high technical and artistic standards, HCDC is currently the only contemporary repertory company to provide Houston audiences with opportunities to view works created by some of America’s most exciting dancemakers that speak to and are representative of the full spectrum of Houston’s diverse populace, while supporting talented Texas based artists as well.

Marlana Doyle, Founding Artistic and Executive Director, is originally from Massachusetts and graduated from Point Park University in 2001 with a BA in Dance. Marlana is the former Artistic Director of Met Dance, where she held various positions for seventeen years. Under her direction, Marlana’s vision and leadership catapulted the company to new levels of excellence and growth while holding tightly to the company’s long tradition of diversity and versatility in its dancers, choreographers, collaborators, and content.Marlana is the President & CEO of the Institute of Contemporary Dance which houses Houston Contemporary professional concert dance company and HC2, a youth training company. Marlana is a member of Dance Source Houston, International Association of Blacks in Dance, Texans in the Arts and Dance USA, spending 2009-2012 as an emerging leader at Dance USA. She was awarded the Dance USA Leadership Mentee Fellowship for the institute of training in 2012 and was a mentor for the same program in 2019. She served for three years as a Dance USA Board of Trustee member and served as the Artistic Director Council Chair. Marlana has also serving on the Performing Arts Houston’s Educational Committee, San Jacinto College Dance Advisory Board and the Leadership Committee for Arts Connect. As a performer, Marlana has danced and generated roles in a range of works by renowned choreographers and artists. Marlana is also a guest teacher and an award-winning choreographer for her many students in Houston and throughout the United States. She has choreographed for the City of Houston, Levi’s and Walmart, Mercury Ensemble, Apollo Chamber Players, Houston Chamber Choir, Houston Symphony, TUTS, Loop38, Kinetic Ensemble, ROCO, University of Houston, Sam Houston State University, Lamar University, RICE University and University of St. Thomas. She lives in Sugar Land, TX with her husband Ben and her two adorable daughters Olivia and Evie.

For more information about Houston Contemporary Dance Company and how to purchase tickets, please see below:

Houston City Book Article

Dance Dish Article

Houston Contemporary Promo Video

Houston Chronicle Article Houstonia Article


Who: Houston Contemporary Dance Company
What: The House
When: February 8th, 9th and 10th, 2024
Times: 5PM; 7PM and 9PM
Where: Heights Ironworks
*Tickets are on sale at: https://www.houstoncontemporary.org/the-house
Why: To be an innovative non-profit repertory dance company transforming how Houston experiences dance as an art form that moves, unites, and inspires.
Contact: Marlana Doyle (Founder & Artistic Director) marlana@houstoncontemporary.org

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