Creative Work, Dance, El Anatsui, Finding Place, Guest Dancers

Rehearsals 4 & 5: More of the Same

rehearsal image
The next couple rehearsals (one with just the company dancers and one with our full cast) really consisted of the same type of work we had been doing the previous week – working on the opening of the piece with gesture material and setting that middle “big movement section.” So, this week felt as if not much progress happened, though, not only could this be expected at almost the mid-way point in our process, if you look closely we really DID make a lot of progress.

The opening and the middle sections were both completed this week, meaning time-wise we are about halfway done with the choreography. The opening really looks very meaningful and the middle is quite “dance-y” and satisfying to watch, but without our story sections in the mix yet (and without the video!), it is difficult to make any sense out of what you are seeing. Of course, in my mind I can see how it is going to work together and make sense… I hope I’m right.

During this week I also collected more stories from all our dancers, and they are so wonderful I wish we could use them all! Perhaps we will keep working on this piece after the NCMA show, work all the stories (and maybe more) into the performance, and end up with an evening-length work about our community. Some really great thoughts from within the stories:

“I was obsessed with [my first pair of ice skates]. Rental skates are in general very unattractive and are usually blue or brown in color. I was so excited to have my very own pair of white skates, and the day we brought them home I just stared at them. I examined the all the contours of the shape of the skate and I was in awe of their pristine condition.”

“On April 1, 2004, my family and I went to the Cleveland Indians home opener. I remember that it was raining and freezing, but I was so happy to be there! (We drank a lot of hot chocolate during the game.) I remember sitting directly in front of first base and that we were so close that I felt like I could lean forward and be able to touch the base.”

“As a child I always dreamed of becoming a painter. I loved the ability a painter has to take a completely blank and lifeless canvas and bring such a vivid portrayal of emotion to an on-looker’s attention. … No one sees the world like an artist. [Art] has allowed me to develop and appreciate the world in all its grandeur. No other place is as simplistically complex or completely simple as this world.”

What has captured my attention the most are the brilliantly clear images created by the dancers’ memories. The above are all from stories that we actually are not using in Finding Place – at least not yet, so stay tuned for some sneak peeks at the stories you’ll hear on July 7! In the meantime, enjoy a bit of our “big movement” middle section:

(Code f.a.d. Artistic Director)


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