Charleston Gaillard Center Presents

Complexions Contemporary Ballet
STAR DUST: From Bach to David Bowie

No upcoming perfomances found for this event.

“This was simply one of the most exciting performances I’ve seen on the dance series, less a rock ballet than a rock concert…”

– The Washington Post

“Companies like Complexions are game-changing: they’re forging a path for what ballet can be instead of what it historically has been.” 

– The Guardian

Founders Dwight Rhoden and Desmond Richardson, armed with a rich Alvin Ailey lineage and a cadre of 18 spectacular dancers, have re-envisioned ballet through technical precision, athletic prowess, and sheer passion. Their blockbuster hit, STAR DUST: From Bach to David Bowie, honoring two musical icons, has rocked the dance world and will make your spirits soar! 


HISSY FITS (excerpt)






STAR DUST A Ballet Tribute to David Bowie

*Subject to change.

HISSY FITS (excerpt)

Choreography: Dwight Rhoden
Music: Johann Sebastian Bach
Lighting Design: Michael Korsch
Costume Design: Christine Darch
Performed by: The Company


Choreography by: Dwight Rhoden
Music: Vivaldi (The Four Seasons – Summer)
Lighting Design: Michael Korsch
Costumes Design: DRSquared
Performed by: Christian Burse and Marissa Mattingly

CHOKE is originally a duet for two men that highlights opposing qualities, and competitive energies.


Choreography: Dwight Rhoden
Assistant Choreographer: Desmond Richardson
Music: J.S. Bach
Lighting Design: Michael Korsch
Costume Design: Christine Darch
Performed by: The Company

In 8 movements.

Endgame/Love One is ultimately about love and survival, infinite possibilities, closed chapters, and next steps. A collection of stories, moods and fascinations.


Choreography: Dwight Rhoden
Music: Ludwig van Beethoven
Lighting Design: Michael Korsch
Costume Design: Christine Darch
Performed by: Jillian Davis

Snatched Back from the Edges (WORK IT OUT excerpt)

Choreography: Dwight Rhoden
Music: Tye Tribbett
Lighting Design: Michael Korsch
Costume Design: Christine Darch
Sound Design: Corey Folta
Performed by: The Company

SNATCHED BACK FROM THE EDGES is meant to be a chronicle of the indelible human spirit, in the eye of a storm. Much of this work was conceived & created at the height of the pandemic, with the additional challenges of gun violence, racial inequity, and social struggles at the forefront of our daily lives. It is inspired by the pain, tenacity, and advocacy for change – that inner strength that continues to propel the world forward – through it all.

STAR DUST A Ballet Tribute to David Bowie

Choreography: Dwight Rhoden
Music: David Bowie
Lighting Design: Michael Korsch
Costumes Design: Christine Darch
Performed by: The Company

I. LAZARUS (Blackstar album 2016)

II. CHANGES (Hunky Dory album 1971)

III. LIFE ON MARS (Hunky Dory album 1971)

IV. SPACE ODDITY (Space Oddity album 1969)

V. 1984 (Diamond Dogs album 1974)

VI. HEROES (Heroes album 1977) Sung by Peter Gabriel

VII.  MODERN LOVE (Let’s Dance album 1983)

VIII.  ROCK AND ROLL SUICIDE (The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and The Spiders from Mars album 1972)

IX. YOUNG AMERICANS (Young Americans album 1975) The Company


STAR DUST is the first installment of a full evening length Ballet tribute to the genre bending innovation of one of the prolific Rock Stars of our time – DAVID BOWIE.  This Ballet takes an array of his hits and lays a visual imprint, inspired by his unique personas and his restless invention artistically – to create a Rock Opera style production in his honor.  With Bowie’s 40+ year career and 25 albums that stretch across musical borders – STAR DUST pays homage to the iconic and Chameleonic spirit of what can only be described as… BOWIE.

About Complexions Contemporary Ballet 
Complexions was founded in 1994 by Master Choreographer Dwight Rhoden and the legendary Desmond Richardson with a singular approach to reinventing dance through a groundbreaking mix of methods, styles, and cultures. Today, Complexions represents one of the most recognized and respected performing arts brands in the World. Having presented an entirely new and exciting vision of human movement on 5-continents, over 20-countries, to over 20-million television viewers, and to well over 300,000 people in live audiences, Complexions is poised to continue its mission of bringing unity to the world one dance at a time. 

Support for this program is made possible by generous donors who have committed time and resources to the Charleston Gaillard Center’s Dance Initiative.

With support from:

Please note: Row DD will be the front row for this performance.


The Charleston Gaillard Center’s Education & Community Program is pleased to announce student and teacher tickets are available for this performance. Limited availability. Limited to two tickets per person with valid student/teacher ID.

Tickets available in advance: Tickets are $20 (plus applicable fees). Orange Seats on Seating Map. Ticket purchasers must pick up their tickets at Will Call the night of the performance. NOTE: Please make sure to select Student/Teacher when purchasing tickets to receive your discount.

Day of Rush: Tickets are $25 (plus applicable fees). Available two hours prior to show time, best available.

Click here to sign up for our education emails, including those regarding our student and teacher ticket program.


Complexions Contemporary Ballet
Master Class & Mock Audition
January 26, 2023
Intermediate & Advanced Dancers (13 years and older only)

$30 Registration Fee. Register today.

Please join the Charleston Gaillard Community and Education Program for a ninety-minute master class and mock audition with Complexions Contemporary Ballet. Led by co-founder and co-artistic director, Desmond Richardson, and Associate Artistic Director and Rehearsal Director, Meg Paul, and including company dancer, Jillian Davis, intermediate and advanced students will learn a variety of Complexions Contemporary Ballet’s exercises including center, adagio, across the floor combinations, jumps and turns.

The master class will also include a mock audition where students will have the opportunity to experience the process of an audition and learn what goes into the process.

Students should wear form-fitting clothing, socks or ballet slippers (socks should be black or flesh tone).

Please arrive at the Gaillard Center to check in at 4:30pm. Check-in will be located on the second floor of the Gaillard in front of the performance hall doors.

About Desmond Richardson, Co-Founder, Co-Artistic Director

Desmond Richardson was the first African-American principal dancer of American Ballet Theatre, and is hailed by The New York Times as one of the greatest dancers of his time. Nominated for a Tony Award for his role in the original Broadway cast of Fosse and deemed a standout in the Tony-Award winning production After Midnight, Richardson is highly esteemed by the concert dance and American theater community. He appeared in Twyla Tharp’s Broadway production Movin’ Out, and had his singing debut in Burt Bacharach’s and Hal David’s The Look Of Love, choreographed by Ann Reinking and Scott Ellis.

Richardson has appeared on celebrated stages across the world, namely The Metropolitan Opera, The Kennedy Center, Paris Opera, The Bolshoi Theatre, The Mariinsky Theatre, The State Kremlin Palace, Teatro Massimo, and Teatro alla Scala. He has been a member and invited guest of prestigious companies including Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Frankfurt Ballet, Royal Swedish Opera Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Washington Ballet, and San Francisco Ballet, to name a few.

Richardson, a Young Arts Finalist and Presidential Scholar, has received numerous awards including the Dance Magazine Award, Capezio Award, Ailey Apex Award, L.A. Ovation Award, Bessie Award, YoungArts Alumni Award, and most recently the Roosevelt “Rosey” Thompson Award presented by the Presidential Scholars Foundation.  In the spring of 2109, Richardson received an honorary doctorate degree from The University of North Carolina School of the Arts in recognition of his extensive contributions to the field of dance.

Richardson has been a celebrity guest performer and choreographer for productions across media such as the American Music Awards, the Academy Awards, City Center’s Encores! series, Italy’s AMICI, and international franchises of So You Think You Can Dance. Richardson has been featured by famed artists such as Michael Jackson, Prince, Madonna, Elton John, and Aretha Franklin, and he appears in celebrated films such as the Oscar-Award winning Chicago, Julie Taymor’s Across the Universe, and the recent independent film, Fall to Rise. He has worked with fashion icon, Tom Ford, Chic’s Nile Rodgers, and recently contributed to Grammy-Award winning Jill Scott’s video Back Together, which features dancers from COMPLEXIONS.

Internationally and domestically, he is a master teacher for dance programs such as the New York’s All Stars Project, YoungArts Miami, United Way, The Pulse, NYCDA, and ASH. He served as co-creative director and choreographer with David Monn for the Park Avenue Armory Gala Masquerade. Richardson is currently guest artist in residence at USC’s Glorya Kaufman School of Dance and is the visiting adjunct professor of dance at Southern Methodist University.

About Meg Paul, Associate Artistic Director/Director Complexions Academy

Meg Paul brings a wealth of significant professional experience in classical and contemporary ballet and Broadway performance, choreography, and teaching artistry. Her career spans four decades and encompasses a wide range of national and international experience in performance, choreography, directing, teaching, program development, community engagement, and arts management.

Paul has worked closely with important dance pioneers in the field and has performed master works from the repertoire and artistic direction of Gerald Arpino, Robert Joffrey, Twyla Tharp and Dwight Rhoden, to works by Petipa, Ashton, Nijinsky, Massine, Balanchine, Forsythe, and Alonzo King. She was a principal dancer with The Joffrey Ballet/NYC and has extensive national and international touring credits. Paul performed both leading roles and served on the creative team and as dance captain for Twyla Tharp’s Tony award-winning Broadway musical, Movin’ Out. Her awards include The Princess Grace Award, winner of The International Dance Competition of the Americas, Detroit Renaissance Hero Award, Sue Nine Endowment for Faculty Achievement Award, Wayne State University’s College of Fine, Performing, and Communication Arts Teaching Award, and the Copperfoot Award.

Co-founder of World Arts Inc., Paul’s New York City-based performing arts agency celebrated a decade of representing and producing tours for national and international companies including Nacho Duato’s Compania Nacional De Danza, Les Ballets De Monte Carlo, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Les Grand Ballets Canadian, Dance Cuba, Les Ballets Africains, Washington Ballet, The Joffrey Ballet, and more.

Paul was Director of Dance at the Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts, curating and directing National City Stars of Ballet and Broadway for three seasons.  National City Stars of Ballet and Broadway engaged hundreds of local performers and pre-professionals to train and perform with ballet and Broadway professionals. For her work on National City Stars of Ballet and Broadway, Paul was honored as a recipient of the Detroit Renaissance Hero Award by the Detroit Free Press. During her tenure, she curated, directed, and produced Music Hall’s annual 313 Choreography Expo highlighting Detroit’s creative impact with other major cities. 313 Choreography Expo served as an incubator and career launchpad for many local Detroit artists and companies while fostering artistic collaborations, dance education, and community engagement.

From 2010-2022, Paul served in many roles at Wayne State University’s Maggie Allesee Department of Theatre and Dance, including Associate Professor of Teaching, Recruitment Coordinator for Dance, and Director of Dance (2018-2022). Paul curated and directed the Complexions Detroit Summer Intensive at Wayne State University for nine seasons.

Currently, Paul serves as Rehearsal Director for Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Academy Director for Complexions Contemporary Ballet Academy, and ballet faculty for Adrenaline, Revive and National Dance Conventions. Paul teaches masterclasses worldwide.

Paul is certified in Vinyasa Yoga, Progressing Ballet Technique, Youth Protection Advocates in Dance, and Dance Equity Association.

About Jillian Davis, Dancer

Jillian Davis (Dancer) from Kutztown, PA and began her ballet training at the age of 3. She studied with Risa Kaplowitz and Susan Jaffe at Princeton Dance and Theater Studio in Princeton, NJ. Jillian attended San Francisco Ballet, School of American Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet and LINES Ballet programs. Jillian has been a company member with Complexions since 2014. She has been part of Dwight Rhoden world premieres including Headspace, Strum, Gutter Glitter, Star Dust, Bach 25, Woke, Love Rocks, and a world-premiere solo, Elegy. She has also performed installation works by Desmond Richardson and an excerpt of Approximate Sonata by William Forsthye. Along with being a dancer with Complexions, Jillian is part of the core faculty for Complexions Dance Academy.