Denison Dance Concert Celebrates New Media Lab In Collaborative Works
Posted: December 1, 2003
An evening of dance, live improvised music, projected images, digital sound and interactivity titled "Dance Image Sound" will play at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday (Dec. 4, 5 & 6) in the Doane Dance Studio Theatre. Associate Professor of Dance Sandy Mathern-Smith is the artistic director and choreographer for this 40-minute collaborative work involving faculty and students from the departments of dance, art, music and theatre. The concert is open to the public. Ticket cost is $5 general admission and $2 for students; and tickets may be reserved by calling the Denison Dance Department at 740-587-6712.
Mathern-Smith conceived of this work as a way to bring together the fine arts division of the University in a collaborative performance event that could serve to mark the opening of the new Mulberry House Digital Media Lab, the catalyst being the interdisciplinary interaction urged by the new media possibilities. Working with Mathern-Smith on this concert were: Assistant Professor of Art Alexander Mouton working in digital video; Associate Professor of Theatre Cynthia Turnbull and Assistant Costumer Joyce Merrilees who designed and constructed the costumes; Resident Musician and Assistant Professor of Music Kathleen Pierson who directed the sound; Jeff Gress, a design principal at ArtSpace Design, Ltd., who designed the lighting and is technical director; and Associate Professor and Chair of Music Andrew Glendening who composed computer-generated sound.
At the core of this work is the investigation between the electronic, digital and constructed and the organic, live and humanistic and all of these relative to the human body. Ideas about order and chaos, interconnectivity, interaction, improvisation, and randomness are explored through dance and the accompanying music and visual imagery that is selected in response.
Seven dancers perform in "Dance Image Sound." These are: senior dance majors Cassandra Smith and Kerry Farrell and senior dance minor Kristie Profitt; sophomore dance major Jennifer Guglielmi; and first-year dance majors Sarah Drake, Eleni Grove and Nicole Talbot.
Joining Pierson in performing live improvised music are student musicians Steven Mokris on electric viola and Jared Thompson on saxophone, and computing services staff member Aaron Fuleki on percussion. Glendening has composed a short computer-driven work -- Kinetic Structures I -- for one of the nine sections in this work. It is modeled after an imagined mobile that has eight arms of different sizes; each arm is two-dimensional with a different color on each face. The electronic mobile is flung into motion and then allowed to gradually return to its rest position and, just like a real mobile, Kinetic Structures I is never quite the same each time it is set in motion. The piece was developed using MAX/MSP software.
Mouton has edited multiple short video clips and will select and layer them spontaneously and in response to the music and dance as the work unfolds. Images will be projected on two smaller panels and the larger backdrop. Mokris has created the original soft and hardware that will allow for this live interactive projection. Mouton's images combine the manmade, angular and repetitive with the organic and natural landscape. The costumes by Turnbull and Merrilees reveal the movement of the dancers, integrating ideas of organic flow and alluding to the pixilation of digital imagery.
Each of the nine short sections of this work, ranging from two to eight minutes in length, is meant as a short and complete essay, beginning and ending bluntly and with little or no transition.
Upcoming events on the dance department's calendar include a conference, "Perceiving Gender and Performance," Feb. 19 to 22; a Latin Social Dance Lecture/Demonstration on April 2 and 3; and the Spring Student Choreographer's Concert, April 15 to 17.
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.
For press inquiries:
- Barbara Stambaugh
- Position Title
- Director, Media Relations
- Primary Email
- Business Phone
- (740) 587-8575