Fall Concert Features Variety of Dance Styles
A variety of dances, from a theatrical modern piece dedicated to
Holocaust victims to an energetic ballet that salutes American parades,
will highlight the Alma College Dance Company’s annual fall concert.
“Dance is a very powerful and emotional art form,” says Carol Fike, associate professor of dance and theatre at Alma. “Watching it live creates a greater kinesthetic effect than watching it on the television. You feel it more in your gut; you are living the dance and the story behind it with the person onstage.”
The performances take place at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 9 and Saturday, Nov. 10th and 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 11 in the Remick Heritage Center at Alma College. Tickets are $10 for adults and free for Alma College staff, students, and youth 18 and under. Seating is reserved. Call (989) 463-7304 for ticket information.
concert opens with “Nacht Und Nebel (Night and Fog),” choreographed by
Fike and dance major Tara Roberts ’09 to the music of Samuel Barber.
This modern piece is dedicated to all those lost in concentration camps
due to Hitler’s Nacht Und Nebel decree.
“Tara Robert’s theatrical and expressive dancing captures the tragic experiences of one entering a concentration camp and eventually disappearing from the world, into the night and fog,” says Fike. “This is a very powerful, very emotional solo piece that brings to light the horrible event that took place not too long ago.”
The concert continues with the premiere of “Passages,” choreographed by Associate Professor of Dance Thomas Morris to the music of Maurice Ravel. A small ensemble of dancers performs this ballet in dedication to the inspirational forces of Gay Delange and Dixie Durr, dance instructors at the University of Michigan and Michigan State University, respectively.
Concluding the first half of the concert is “Moments Ago,” an interpretative modern piece choreographed by Fike and dancers to a Kenny G. score. “Moments Ago” was first performed at Alma seven years ago and has since been made longer with added dancers.
“This macabre, mysterious and emotionally charged piece is being done again because the issues that the dance addresses—such as war, violence, government scandal and other problems—continue to plague the youth, government and nation today without many signs of positive change,” says Fike.
second half of the concert features the company’s premiere of
“Americana,” which Morris has choreographed after George Balanchine’s
so-called “Americana” ballets, notably “Stars and Stripes.” With music
of John Philip Sousa leading dancers through six Battalions, the piece
is a lively and exciting tribute to American parades. Its various
movements feature a variety of ensembles, including soloist ballerina
Jane McDonald ’08, guest dancers joining company members, and the
entire company in the final Battalion.
“This ballet follows in the stylistically stunning, engaging, and energetic tradition of both our ‘Main Street’ celebrations and Balanchine’s Americana repertoire,” says Morris.
“There is a good deal which can and does appeal to a lot of people when they attend a dance concert,” says Morris. “In ballet, there is much, much more than ‘The Nutcracker.’ On this particular program there will be one ballet Americana, which is way out of the range of what people will expect!”
The Alma College Dance Company consists of 22 student dancers. Though some choose to major in dance exclusively, “the dancers don’t have to be a dance major to get in,” says Fike.
“We acknowledge the liberal arts and appreciate how students in diverse programs contribute a variety of new and interesting ideas and perspectives to the dances,” she adds.
In addition to the three concert performances, the Alma College Dance Company will present a demonstration to local fifth graders at 10 a.m. Friday, Nov. 9 in the Remick Heritage Center. The presentation will include a question-and-answer session and a sneak peak at the fall concert.
Posted: Thu, November 1st, 2007 at 1:19PM