REVIEW: An Evening of Dance

Dancelucent 2012 was held by the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance on February 3 and it was held at the Power Center for the Performing Arts. The evening began with a piece called “Been a Long Time” which was very rock and roll and it included music by artists like Led Zeppelin and Frank Zappa. The piece was choreographed by Bill DeYoung and it was an experimentation of interactions between all of the dancers. There was a plot to the piece that could be interpreted by the audience and the dancers featured were confident and able to create emotions individually as well as through interactions with other dancers.  The seven movements of “Been a Long Time” each had a purpose and led smoothly into the next and the different songs used were of similar style.

The second piece was called “Forest Through the Trees,” was a repetitious, but diverse dance that was narrated by a woman portraying Gertrude Stein. The Making of Americans by Gertrude Stein was read during the dance and the choreography followed the narration of the piece. There was an amazing video that accompanied the dancers by Peter Sparling and it made the perception of the piece altered in that there were so many different elements happening at once. The colors of the video were interesting and the dancers were featured in the video. Dancelucent gave the world premiere of this piece.

“Lightmotifs” also had its world premiere at Dancelucent. It was choreographed by Robin Wilson, who is an associate professor at the University of Michigan. This piece had a lighter feel to it and began with a very cute slumber party scene. At one point, there were some bicyclists riding around on stage! The final part of “Lightmotifs” had a gospel feeling to it and the costumes were vibrant and had great movement. The whole piece was very uplifting and was overall bright and cheery.

The final part of Dancelucent was Dance #1, which was based around a piece composed by Philip Glass. Lucinda Childs, who was involved in Einstein on the Beach with Philip Glass, choreographed Dance #1. As it was composed by Philip Glass, the dance featured elements of iteration. There were subtle changes with the music and it was fun to get lost in the piece but at the same time notice the changes every once in a while. Overall, the piece was interesting because it changed my perception of time and gave me an insight into the subtleties of Lucinda’s choreography.

Dancelucent was a diverse and beautiful event that displayed the great talent of the University of Michigan’s School of Dance through modern dance. The choreography was exceptional and it was great to see that our School of Dance does high quality work.

2 thoughts to “REVIEW: An Evening of Dance”

  1. I wish I’d known about the performance of ‘Forest Through the Trees’ and that The Making of Americans by Gertrude Stein was read during the dance. I’m a visual artist living in Australia
    and have hand-copied the entire book on A2 pages. Each sheet consists of three layers, also have a video documenting one particular sheet. It would have made a perfect back-drop for the dance. 50 of the 91 works are on show in Washington DC @ The Bing Stanford Gallery till March in “Insight & Identity – Contemporary Artists Seeing Gertrude Stein. Good to see so many ‘Steinens’ around the world and her 138th birthday was only two days ago.

  2. Wow! That sounds amazing. It was a great performance and I am sure that the people who designed it would love to hear your ideas.

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