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Fredonia Dance Ensemble offers seven new works with annual concert
Monday, February 09, 2015

Fredonia Dance Ensemble offers seven new works with annual concert

Seven new works choreographed by faculty members and guest artists will be featured when the Fredonia Dance Ensemble presents its annual concert from May 1 to 3 in Marvel Theatre.

Performances are slated for 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 1 and Saturday, May 2, and 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 3. The event is presented by the Department of Theatre and Dance as part of the Walter Gloor Mainstage Series.

The annual showcase is produced by Helen Myers, director of Dance at Fredonia. The concert features modern, classical, traditional and abstract dance. The Fredonia Dance Ensemble, comprised of 31 dancers from 14 different majors, is the top dance ensemble on campus.

Featured work by faculty includes:

• “Pilgrimage,” a new piece by Ms. Myers, based on the famous pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela, Spain. Set to the earliest example of polyphonic music in the western world, this 12th century music is perhaps the oldest music ever presented at Fredonia. Dr. Gerald Gray will conduct the Fredonia Chamber Choir, performing live for the concert.

• “Orion I,” choreographed by dance faculty member Sam Kenney. The fast-paced explosive work continues her exploration of Philip Glass’ music for the “Orion” series. Taking a journey through the music of Australia, Ms. Kenney “explores the dynamic movements of the galaxy.”

• “We Got ’Em,” a new comedic romp set to commercial advertising music. The humorous piece explores the world of retail sales in the early-to-mid 20th century. It was created by dance faculty member Angelika Summerton.

• “Collecting Gravity,” by Terry Beck, a Western New York-based choreographer. It is described as a “beautiful work of dance-theatre incorporating large scenic elements.” Beck has performed worldwide as a dancer/choreographer with his Philadelphia-based dance/theatre company Terry Beck Troupe. He has won numerous awards for dance and choreography including The Edinburgh Festival’s Critics Award for Dance and the Rockefeller Foundation’s New Artist Award.

The ensemble will perform three pieces choreographed by guest artists, including:

• “Cash or Check,” a work by Jon Lehrer that is described as a “jaw-dropping athletic spectacle.” Lehrer has choreographed for dance companies around the world including Thodos Dance Chicago, Instruments of Movement, Momenta Dance Theatre, Louisiana Dance Theatre, Le Jazz Groupe from Monterrey, Mexico and Kannon Dance of St. Petersburg, Russia. He teaches master classes throughout the U.S. and around the world and has been on the faculty of the Jazz Dance World Congress, Dance Masters of America, Dance Teacher Summer Conference, Chicago National Association of Dance Masters, Chicago Dance Connection and Chautauqua Institution.

• “Threshold,” by Rosy Simas, a contemporary Native American artist from Minneapolis. She created the new work specifically for the Fredonia Dance Ensemble and staged it during a week-long residency in September 2014. Simas’ work has been presented in Montréal, Vancouver, California, Wisconsin and New York. She was a 2013 recipient of a Native Arts and Cultures Foundation Dance Fellowship and a McNight Next Step Grant and was recently honored with a residency award at the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts in Santa Fe, N.M.

• “Drop, Post & Beam,” a contemporary ballet with a twist that is choreographed by Kerry Ann Ring, a dance faculty member at the University of Buffalo. Ring has performed as a company member with the Nevada Dance Theatre, Delta Festival Ballet, the Santa Fe Opera, Bill Evans Dance Company and Molissa Fenley and Dancers. Three of her choreographic works have been chosen for the American College Dance Festival’s Gala Performance. She teaches ballet and modern dance technique at the University at Buffalo.

Tickets are available through the Fredonia Ticket Office in the Williams Center, by phone at 673-3501 and online at fredonia.edu/tickets.

The event is part of the 2014-15 Lake Shore Savings Season at Rockefeller Arts Center.

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