Balinese to Classical Ballet Showcased In Denison Dance Department Concert
Posted: November 9, 2001
The Denison Dance Department will present its Faculty Concert for the autumn semester at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday (Nov. 15 - 17) and a matinee at 2 p.m. on Saturday (Nov. 17) in the Doane Dance Center. Works to be presented range from classical ballet and Balinese classical dance, both in a very modern context, to contemporary choreography and a reconstructed avant-garde work from the 1960s. Tickets are $5 per person general admission or $2 for seniors and students and reservations can be made by calling the dance department at (740) 587-6712.
"Sugar Plum Fairy Pas de Deux" is a work originally choreographed by Marius Petipa in 1895 and restaged by Robert Cole, an instructor at Denison. Set to Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker, the traditional pas de deux was meant to be viewed from the front on a proscenium stage. Cole's innovative choreography is designed to face an audience on both sides of the stage; steps that would ordinarily be relatively invisible when viewed from the front are quite conspicuous when viewed from behind. Dancing in the work are: sophomore Allison Cartmell; and seniors Sarah Enterline and Chris Million.
"Such is Life," is a contemporary ballet work by Robert and Lisa Cole that explores the recurring passages of life. Set to Pieces of Africa by the Kronos Quartet, it will be danced by: first-year student Elizabeth McNamara; sophomores Allison Cartmell, Leah Lombardo and Megan Cherry; junior Emily Stenken; and senior Sarah Enterline.
"Opening the Veil: Legong Kraton," set to Indonesian gamelan music, is a Balinese classical dance form which has been part of the curricula taught by World Dance Assistant Professor Susan M. Bauer this semester. The music is by Banjar Teges of Bali. While on a Fulbright grant, Bauer studied with Ibu Mukelan, master Balinese teacher and the oldest living teacher of Legong in Bali. "One of the most renowned and best loved forms of Balinese dance, this classical female form of dance portrays celestial nymphs performing an elegant dance to inspire the worlds of 'sekala' (the tangible world of humans) and the 'niskala' (the intangible world of spirit) alike," Bauer says. In this performance, six Denison dancers enact the role of the Chondong, the opening solo that serves to open the veil between these two worlds. Performing are: first-year students Megan Hebert, Abaja Maolud-Sneed and Marisa Wikramanayabe; and seniors Kimberly Nelson, Emily Rybinski and Kate Souci.
Streaming" was choreographed by Associate Professor Sandy Mathern-Smith to music by Loop Guru which has been mixed by Kathleen Pierson, resident musician, and sophomore Silvino Andrade. A work for eight dancers it is a collage of ideas, musical loops and movement dynamics which incorporates movement influenced by Balinese traditional dance into the contemporary choreography. While acknowledging a respect for the many dance forms that exist in the world, it explores the non-traditional arrangement of audience to performer and accesses spatial designs revealed by the performance space. Performing the work are: sophomores Kerry Farrell, Theresa Lashway and Cassandra Smith; junior Jessamyn Schmidt; and seniors Lyndsey Cortese, Carleen Healy, Ellie Shardlow and Ilana Silverstein.
"Chair/Pillow Mix," set to music by Ike and Tina Turner, was one section of a piece called 'Continuous Project: Altered Daily" choreographed in 1969 by Yvonne Rainer. It is being reconstructed and presented by Gill Wright Miller, associate professor and chair of the dance department at Denison. Accompanying the dance simultaneously is the text of a lecture Rainer wrote in 1966 about "Trio A," another section of "Continuous Project." The entire work first appeared in the summer session at Connecticut College when that site served as the forerunner of the American Dance Festival. The piece was performed in the gym, in the round, where it consisted of several pieces running simultaneously. The audience was free to move around and see any dance from any available space, including sitting among the dancers.
Miller is rehearsing the dancers from the notation score of the "Chair/Pillow" section which was adjusted and corrected by Pat Catterson, one of the original dancers from that era. Miller also has selected and executed the additional pieces which will run simultaneously in an effort to emulate but not reproduce the original work. Performers in this work are: first-year student Katie Bair; junior Gretchen Moul; and seniors Carleen Healy, Kimberly Nelson, Yana Pegues, Emily Rybinski, Ilana Silverstein, Laura Spencer, and Micah Trapp.
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.
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