The UAA Department of Theatre and Dance proudly presents its acclaimed Dance Ensemble in Concert, showcasing the seven-member company performing original choreography by visiting guest artist Marianne Kim, Department of Theatre and Dance faculty member Leslie Ward, and other local choreographers.
Interdisciplinary artist Kim premieres "The Perfect Human V2" an absurdist choreographic piece inspired by the neo-expressionistic dance of Japanese Butoh. Kim has been produced throughout the United States and abroad while being critically lauded for her work in Butoh and highly visual multi-media performance pieces. Her most recent interdisciplinary works have been presented by Collision Symposium at the University of Victoria, Man.In.fest International Experimental Theatre Festival in Romania, DeBalie Center for Culture and Politics in Amsterdam and Kinesthetic Kino in San Francisco. In addition to being an assistant professor at Arizona State University's Interdisciplinary Arts and Performance Department, she was recently assistant director and performer for choreographer David Rousseve's performance project Saudade.
Becky Kendall, director of Momentum Dance Collective, in collaboration with Dance Ensemble alumni and current Momentum company members Beth Daly and Irene Castillo, meander through journeys of love in "This Path." With music by post-rock band This Will Destroy You, the three women's physical movement embodies their strengths and vulnerabilities as they search to dig deeper and get messier, while reaching for something richer.
Dance Ensemble member Ryan Nixon has choreographed a solo that features his unique and passionate movement aesthetic. "Burdens" is inspired by the functions of daily life while being supported by the haunting and evolving rhythms of Radiohead. Nixon's solo reinterprets a regimented and repetitive schedule of movement actions that continually and abruptly propels him forward, whether he is ready or not.
In her latest work "Orphan," UAA Dance Program faculty Leslie Kimiko Ward explores the ties that bind us to one another, the families we are born into and the ones we create. Drawing inspiration from Romani and carnival cultures, her grandparents' wartime internment, and her life in Prague, Ward crafts a rich journey for dancers and audience alike. Melancholy accordion strains from local musicians like In the Belfry, whom Ward describes as "the band I always wanted to find in my grandmother's attic," together with the bathtub gin vocal stylings of Madeleine Peyroux, victrola-worthy monologues from Nitin Sawhney, neo-Victorian steam punk fashion, and 75 feet of sailing rope provide a lush setting for Ward's stylistically human choreography.
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