Loni Landon and Gregory Dolbashian, both natives of New York City, created The Playground as a spontaneous, heartfelt act. Curious to see what would happen if dancers could experience different choreographers without having to save up nickels and dimes, they intuitively called their respective contacts, booked space, and invited the crowds. To their amazement, The Playground was an instant sensation and was immediately picked up by Home4Dance and Manhattan Movement Center. The Playground currently is partnered with The Gibney Dance organization and holds many of its sessions at the newly rennovated 280 Broadway space
Loni Landon,Co-Founder & Artistic Director
Gregory Dolbashian, Co-Founder & Artistic Director
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Loni Landon was born and raised in New York City. Landon received her training from the Juilliard School, School at Jacob’s Pillow, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago Scholarship Program, Dance Theater of Harlem, and NYC High School of Performing Arts.
Upon receiving her BFA in Dance from the Juilliard School in 2005, Landon worked with Aszure Barton on the opening of the Baryshnikov Arts Center. Soon thereafter, Landon joined Ballet Theater Munich from 2005 to 2007 under the direction of Phillip Taylor. From 2007 to 2009, Landon joined Tanz Munich Theater under the direction of Henning Paar. During her time in Munich, she performed works by many premier European choreographers including Jiri Kylian, Stephan Thoss, Rui Horta, Robert North,Tony Rizzi, Cayetano Soto, Mirko Hektor, and Marco Goecke, among others. Landon is currently a dancer at the Metropolitan Opera.
Landon’s original choreography has been performed at the State Theater of Munich, APAP at New York City Center, American College Dance Festival (performed by Snow College Dance Ensemble), SUNY Purchase, Jacob’s Pillow Inside/Out, Dance Gallery Festival at the Ailey Theater in NYC, DanceNOW at Joe's Pub, WestFest, Pushing Progress, HT CHEN’S New Steps Choreography Series, and Dumbo Dance Festival. As a sought after choreographer, her work has been commissioned by Northwest Dance Project, CityDance Ensemble, Ballet X, and the New American Talent Commission from Ballet Austin.
She has been awarded as the 1st Prize Winner of Ballet Austin’s New American Talent Competition, Winner of Northwest Dance Project’s “Pretty Creatives’” Choreography Competition,Winner of the Next Commission from CityDance Ensemble, and 2009 Finalist in the Hannover International Choreography Competition. In October of 2010, Landon was featured with Northwest Dance Project in Dance Magazine.
In 2010, Landon co-founded the Playground (New York City) alongside Gregory Dolbashian.
|Photo Credit: Karime Arabia |
and raised in New York City Gregory made his professional stage debut
at the age of eight with the Glimmerglass Opera Company. Soon after, he
was cast in the Philip Glass/Robert Wilson world tour of Einstein on
the Beach. Gregory received his dance training at the Alvin Ailey
School on a fellowship scholarship and then graduated cum laude from
SUNY Purchase dance conservatory where he studied composition with
Since then he has gone on to dance and choreograph
with a variety of artists, performing with Patrick Corbin, Nelly van
Bommel, Sylvain Emard, and The Chicago Ballet. He was resident
choreographer for both Chicago Ballet’s spring season in 2008 and
CorbinDances in 2007. He was selected as one of four emerging
choreographers in the Springboard Montreal intensive run by Juilliard’s
Alexandra Wells, where he created and premiered his first international
Dolbashian is a recipient of The Bessie Schoenberg Residency at
The Yard, winner of The Pretty Creatives Competition for Northwest Dance
Project, and of The Hubbard Street 2 International Choreographic
Competition. He also placed second in Ballet Austin's New American
Talent competition, and has received commissions from Atlanta Ballet, TU
Dance in Minnesota, CityDance Ensemble in D.C, and was the Resident
Guest Artist at The Hartt School for the Spring 2013 semester under the
direction of Stephen Pier.
He debuted his own company, The DASH
Ensemble, in December 2009 at JOYCE SoHo. The company has gone on to
present works at the Skirball Center, DTW, The Gershwin Hotel, Riverside
Theater, Summer Stage, and The JOYCE Theater. The DASH received the
audience award at NYC’s DanceNOW challenge at Joe’s Pub in 2012. The
DASH also recently premiered “DAYWALKING”, a film at New York's Tribeca
Cinemas in collaboration with fashion film director Charlie Wan. In
addition to his choreography, Gregory, alongside Loni Landon, is the
co-founder of The Playground, a choreographic initiative that was voted
25 to Watch in 2013 by Dance Magazine.
|Photo Credit: Karime Arabia|