Contemporary Dance Style Featured In Denison's 'Six Points of View' Concert
Posted: April 10, 2006
The Denison University dance department will present "Six Points of View," an evening of contemporary dance pieces by six choreographers at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday (April 20, 21, & 22) in the Doane Dance Performance Space. Tickets are $8 general admission and $4 for senior citizens, students and children.
Student choreographers Erin Davidson, Sarah Drake, Jennifer Guglielmi and Abeje Maolud-Sneed, choreographer and Associate Professor Sandra Mathern-Smith, and guest artist Headlong Dance Theater all present original works in the contemporary dance style. Ticket reservations may be made at the web site www.denison.edu/dance/performances/ticketreservations or by calling 740-587-5718.
Headlong Dance Theater co-directors David Brick, Amy Smith, and Andrew Simonet have created an original work for eight Denison students who were selected by audition. At the tail end of winter break in January, they undertook the challenge of a workshop, sourcing and setting material on these students. The result isSince I've Been Gone. Seniors Jennifer Guglielmi, Kathryn Hotler, and Abeje Maolud-Sneed, juniors Erin Davidson and Sarah Drake, and sophomores Sarah Page, Tasmin Pepin-Perry and Katie Sparks spent a week in Philadelphia completely immersed in Headlong-topia. What came out of the experience is a work centered on the often confusing, but humorous lives of Denison students. Performed to the music of Queen, Kelly Clarkson, and Sufjan Stevens, the 25-minute dance incorporates movements developed by the performers and arranged and manipulated by Headlong.
InNine Accounts of Fact or Fiction, Mathern-Smith further investigates the notion of narrative - the linking of events in a sequence that plays out a story - and how we construct it over time and through movement. This duet work is choreographed for two advanced dancers, dance majors Sarah Drake and Jennifer Guglielmi taking advantage of their skills as performers and improvisors. Presented are nine distinct events placed in discrete locations on the stage space -- the order of the events revealing an underlying narrative available to and relying upon the imagination of the viewer.
Taking inspiration from old films, well-known masterworks of art, and everyday interactions, this work is meant to string together the disparate, as a means of inventing a sense of dream-like narrative. Spoken text, written by Mathern-Smith and the performers, is an important component of the work, serving to link image with idea. Senior theater major Dani Lebens brings her dramatic skills, contributing the spoken word as accompaniment. Resident Musician Brian Casey, also contributing spoken text, composed and performs the original score for this work, utilizing piano, percussion, shruti box and manipulated/recorded sound.
InThe Dining Rooms, junior Drake places recognizable gestures from the everyday into the context of a dance piece. The use of the unordinary/ordinary first began with an idea of a simple, sweet, and intimate waltz that was a little unusual. This waltz became the inspiration for the dance - the distortion of everyday movements, everyday places and unusual events. Performing are senior Guglielmi, juniors Laura Berger, Kerri Grinnage and Lesley Lighthiser, and first-year student Megan Castranio.
Student choreographer Erin Davidson has created a piece inspired by sorority life among young women seeking a friendship bond that is not only linked at the surface, but is deeper and longer lasting. Davidson, a mathematics and dance double major, began this work as an investigation into the relationships among her six female cast members, half of whom are members of a sorority. These Denison dancers - Gugliemi, Berger, Castranio, Diana Dixon, Elizabeth Kennedy and Christine Mince - illustrate their own individuality within a cohesive group through repetitive gestures and movement phrases. It is performed in silence to reflect the internal bond of the performers.
Drawing greatly from student choreographer Maolud-Sneed's experiences,Headwrapsis a collection of the cultural expressions, emotions, and mutual spirituality shared amongst communities of African American women. Maolud-Sneed hopes to illustrate the healing and hurting, the forgiving and comforting, and the praying and giving praise to one another that takes place within circles of women; the strong bond between sisters, mothers, daughters, and girlfriends.Headwrapsdraws its inspiration from the art of head-wrapping. For some, head-wrapping is a fashion statement, intended to express individuality. For others, it is a symbol of African peoples' heritage -- a connection to the African diaspora. Headwraps serve as a reminder of the strong communal bonds shared within the African communities and those of the African diaspora.
Senior dance major Jennifer Guglielmi presents an excerpt from her evening-length workEyes, Ears, and Mouth Open, created in completion of her senior honors research project.Eyes, Ears, and Mouth Openis a contemporary dance piece that investigates the experience of being an adolescent girl. She uses sounds, text, and images from popular books, music and movies about teenage girls (including Judy Blume'sAre You There God? It's Me Margaretand Alanis Morissette'sJagged Little Pill) as the framework for her piece. The five student performers ofEyes, Ears, and Mouth Open(Guglielmi, Brittany Jackson '09, Lighthiser , Page, and Pepin-Perry) perform spoken text and movement from these sources in a way that isolates, reveals, and magnifies the issues of adolescence, offering new interpretations of that which is already familiar.
Parking for this event is available in the Burke Fine Arts parking lot off of Cherry Street and Broadway.
CALENDAR LISTING: Denison University, Granville -- Spring Dance Concert "Six Points of View"; 8 p.m., Thursday, Friday and Saturday (April 20, 21 & 22), Doane Dance Performance Space (231 W. College St.). Tickets are $8 general admission, $4 senior citizens, students and children. Tickets may be reserved at the web site (www.denison.edu/dance/performances/ticketreservations) or by calling 740-587-5718.
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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