It is show week! We premiere portions of dances with Dear Nature tonight at Artspace. (We premiere the entire piece on September 18.)
Rehearsal this week was all about the details: see the dancers in their costumes, practice all the choreography and find any details that need “fixing.” A lot of choreographers and dancers talk about “cleaning” a piece prior to performance, and we do want everything to look precisely how it should, but I really do my best to handle this cleaning as we learn material so incorrect placements or motions do not get stuck into the dancers’ “muscle memory.” So there was not a ton of cleaning to do, just reviewing everything – especially those transition points between sections, those were a bit more shaky in everyone’s bodies.
Also this week I needed to decide which portions of the work we would show on Friday. It sounds like a fairly easy decision, though, it comes harder than you might think. Once the entire work is complete, it can be tough to look at only part of it and have that part feel like a complete work. Naturally there are sections I feel are stronger than others; however, so I started looking at those sections to choose what would be best for our short shows this week.
Other factors came into play, too, in this decision. Because we are performing during First Friday, when hundreds of people will be checking out the artwork in Artspace, I know the gallery will be a bit loud, and you may have people just wandering in and out to see part of each show. The opening section of the work, “Ocean,” I believe is very strong and striking, but I also believe you need a captive audience, sitting comfortably in a quiet space to really tune in to this part of the work. Not having those conditions, that piece will have to wait until the full premiere on September 18.
We still have some great portions to be performed this evening, though! Audience members can expect to see two great trios (one to part of Julia Price’s Sun Kiss and one to Proxy’s The War), as well as a dance to one of Jessica Temple’s poems (2508 Circle Drive). Come check out one of the shows: 7pm, 8pm and 9pm in Gallery 2, Artspace, 201 E Davie St, Raleigh. See you tonight!
(Code f.a.d. Artistic Director)