Known for its appearance on Season 8 of America's Got Talent, Catapult presents an evening of imaginative shadow dance/theatre works which tell stories and showcase the magic of shadow illusions at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 25, at the John Legend Theater at The Dome, 700 S. Limestone St., Springfield as the 2018-2019 Wittenberg Series continues.
A collaborative shadow dance company dedicated to challenging the creative landscape, Catapult has been making waves among the dance community since its founding in 2008 by director Adam Battelstein.
Dancers work behind a screen to create an imaginative theatrical art form that combines dance, storytelling, and sculpture. Consisting of hundreds of shape transformations, Catapult’s shows delight, surprise, and move audiences through engaging, humorous, and emotional stories that showcase the magic of shadow illusion. The company’s fame lies in its ability to transform human bodies into a series of stunning silhouette images – from a mountain to an elephant to a helicopter – as the story unfolds.
Millions of viewers watched Catapult perform on Season 8 of America’s Got Talent, where the company advanced straight to the quarterfinals, earned standing ovations from all four judges, and competed at both the semi-finals and finals of the hit TV show. Despite a loss in the final competition, Catapult’s performances brought instant fame and a flood of requests for tours and charity work.
Among the most talented in the world, the dancers who comprise Catapult have backgrounds in dance, theatre, and improv and have appeared on Broadway, at the Met, and on stages and at film festivals around the world.
Before founding Catapult, Battelstein spent 19 years with the world-renowned dance company Pilobolus and has traveled the globe as a performer and director. His dance career includes performances at Carnegie Hall, the 2007 Academy Awards, and on The Oprah Winfrey Show.
In addition to performing a tour schedule with stops in Israel, Belgium, and across the continental United States, Catapult creates short films, music videos, and television commercials to help companies and nonprofits tell their stories and grow their brands. Clients include UPS, Girl Scouts of America, YMCA, Goodwill Industries, Abbot Pharmaceuticals, and Bridgestone Tires.
Now in its 36th year, the Wittenberg Series brings distinguished lecturers and performing artists of national and international prominence to the Wittenberg campus and Springfield community. To make special arrangements, request a Series poster, or become a friend of the Wittenberg Series, contact Lisa Watson at WatsonL4@wittenberg.edu. All Wittenberg Series events are free and open to the public. Doors open 30 minutes prior to the beginning of each lecture or performance. Below are further details related to this year’s Series.
2018-2019 Wittenberg Series Events:
- Sunday, Oct. 28: Festival Choral Eucharist for Reformation Service, 7:30 p.m. in Weaver Chapel (music begins at 7 p.m.), featuring The Rev. Dr. Craig Alan Satterlee, Bishop of the North/West Lower Michigan Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
- Wednesday, Nov. 7: Fred R. Leventhal Family Lecture, 7:30 p.m., Weaver Chapel featuring Seth M. Siegel, New York Times best-selling author of Let There Be Water: Israel’s Solution to a Water-Starved World. Q & A, 4 p.m., Bayley Auditorium.
- Friday, Dec. 7: Lessons and Carols, 7:30 p.m. (pre-service music begins at 7 p.m.), Weaver Chapel.
- Monday, Jan. 21, 2019: Martin Luther King Jr. Convocation, 11:15 a.m., Weaver Chapel, featuring Adam Foss, criminal justice reform advocate. Q & A, 2:45 p.m., 105 Joseph C. Shouvlin Center for Lifelong Learning.
- Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2019: Vocal concert featuring South African a cappella group Ladysmith Black Mambazo, 7:30 p.m., Weaver Chapel.
- Wednesday, March 13, 2019: William A. Kinnison Endowed Lecture in History, 7:30 p.m., Bayley Auditorium, featuring Pulitzer Prize-winning author Elizabeth Fenn on “Sacagawea’s Capture and the History of the Early West.”
- Wednesday, March 27, 2019: IBM Endowed Lecture in the Sciences, 7:30 p.m., Bayley Auditorium, featuring John Dovidio, author, Yale psychology professor, and leading researcher on aversive racism. Colloquium, 4 p.m., Bayley Auditorium.
For more information on the Wittenberg Series, click here.