Footnotes Dance Victoria’s subscriber newsletter
ISSUE 52 • FALL 2016 • Jessica Lang Dance + Nutcracker + Studio News
Dance at the Royal
Jessica Lang Dance Mixed repertoire of five contemporary ballet works
November 18 + 19 • Fri + Sat • 7:30 pm Royal Theatre Running Time: 1 hour 30 minutes (incl. 20-minute intermission)
Royal Winnipeg Ballet + Victoria Symphony Nutcracker
December 2 + 3 • Fri + Sat • 7:30 pm December 3 + 4 • Sat + Sun • 2:00 pm Royal Theatre Running Time: 2 hours (incl. 20-minute intermission)
In the Studios
The Company in Jessica Lang’s Thousand Yard Stare. Photo © 2015 Todd Rosenberg Photography
Amber Funk Barton Company 605
, Videos + s o phot fo more in eb w on the
2 Footnotes • Issue 52 • Fall 2016 • Dance Victoria’s 20th Anniversary Season
Dance Victoria Board: President
Vice President René Peloquin Treasurer
Susan Howard Kristen Kitchen Kari McLay Lynda Raino John B. Shields
Staff: Executive Producer
If you’d like to volunteer for Dance Victoria please call 250-595-1829 Studios and Office: 111 – 2750 Quadra Street Victoria, BC V8T 4E8 250-595-1829 DanceVictoria.com for trailers, tickets and more information Footnotes is written by Stephen White and Tracy Smith (unless otherwise noted).
Dance Seen One Person’s Art… BY STEPHEN WHITE
PICTURE THIS: We’re in our seats at New York’s Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center attending the Spring Gala performance of American Ballet Theatre. After a performance of Misty Copeland in The Firebird, one of our tour group members, seated in front of me turns and asks, “Does it ever get any better than this?” “No,” I said. “This is the best of the best.” In May and June, Bill Hamar and I took 26 travellers to New York, London and Paris for 16 nights. It’s a trip we’ve done before. We knew the spots we wanted to hit, the walking tours we wanted to share, the museums… but what we hadn’t been prepared for was the consistently amazing performances we attended: New York City Ballet performing Jerome Robbins’ West Side Story Suite; The Royal Ballet (London) featuring Liam Scarlett’s Frankenstein; Christopher Wheeldon’s A Winter’s Tale; an amazing production of Rigoletto at the Paris Opera; and two Broadway and West End musicals. The real cherry on the cake for me was a performance of Auf Dem Gebirge Hat Man Ein Geschrie Gehort (On a Mountain a Cry Was Heard) in Paris, choreographed by the late Pina Bausch. Before walking to the theatre, I explained to the group that Pina Bausch was a German dance theatre icon from the 1970s who invented “dance theatre”. She was the artistic predecessor for artists like Crystal Pite (Betroffenheit, Dark Matters, Tempest Replica), only Bausch’s narrative was wilder and “‘Nailed it!’ I said to myself as less coherent than Pite’s is. She layered many ideas; some we walked across Pont Neuf dance sections flow organically and shape a state-of-theand behind Notre Dame, world narrative. I told our tour folks that the “best way to arriving at Théâtre de Châtelet appreciate a performance by Bausch was to forget a scant 20 minutes later.” everything and allow yourself to live in the choreographer’s vast imagination for a couple of hours. If you’re able to do this, you’ll have a rich experience.” The group nodded thoughtfully as if they understood what I was asking them to do. “Nailed it!,” I said to myself as we walked across Pont Neuf and behind Notre Dame, arriving at Théâtre de Châtelet a scant 20 minutes later. Once inside, our group was scattered throughout the hall, seated in pairs or small groups of six. There was excitement in the air. The house lights came down and what ensued was certainly a wild ride. The stage floor was covered in mud. Downstage right stood a magnificent man, about 6’4”, wearing nothing but an orange speedo, bathing cap and aviator goggles. He repeatedly pulled a red balloon from his trunks and blew it up until it popped. Dancers ran around the stage perimeter as if nervous to venture into the playing area. They continued running from the back of the house, their shoes clacking on the wooden floor, up over some steps, spilling onto the edge of the stage, pressing their bodies against the walls as they travelled upstage and across the back wall, exiting to return through the hall again minutes later. And then the piece began to unfold…. There were some very tough sections, one in particular mimicking abuse. Then there was whimsy, like when out of nowhere, as the company was running in ever expanding circles around the stage, a 10-piece brass band emerged. A bunch of old guys with music stands, chairs and instruments began playing 16 bars of oom-pah-pah over and over again. Or a forest of Christmas trees, carried onto the stage one-by-one by artists, who stood them in the mud and abandoned them a moment later where they fell and littered the stage. There was so much to see, to feel, to marvel at and to discover. It was such a satisfying evening at the theatre. Bill and I left to stand in front of the theatre, ready to greet our enthusiastic group and walk back to the hotel. Imagine our surprise when only 4 of the original 26 emerged from the crowd. The rest had left at intermission! FN
Stephen White photo © Don Craig Photography
Embarking on its 20th season this fall, Dance Victoria, a non-profit charitable society, brings the World’s Best Dance to the Royal Theatre and supports the development of new dance for the international stage from its studios in Quadra Village. DanceVictoria.com
DanceVictoria.com • 3
Welcome (Back) to Dance Victoria! We’re thrilled to celebrate our 20th Anniversary Season and even more thrilled to have you with us this year. At the beginning of each season, we like to remind you of these tips to help maximize your experience with Dance Victoria: 1. Please don’t wear scented products at the theatre. Many of our patrons are sensitive to perfumes or even allergic to the chemicals that make scents. 2. Help us get your name right. If it is spelled incorrectly or something’s wrong with your address, call us or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll correct it. 3. At any time during the year you can buy extra tickets to any show and get the subscriber price (20% off). Just tell the box office you want the “Friend of Subscriber” price. 4. No babes in arms in the theatre. We love them, but they are unpredictable little bundles. Throughout the year we notify our subscribers about studio events such as Rough Cuts, (intimate performances of new works) or updates about casting and pre-show chats for our Dance at the Royal series. To minimize marketing costs and maximize the fees we pay artists, we’d like to tell you about them by email. Take a moment to email us at email@example.com and tell us that you’d like to be included in updates. We will not trade or sell your contact information and you can unsubscribe at any time.
Dancing on the Island The dance scene on Vancouver Island has a rich history. Six local women played a very special part in it and their stories are captured in Dancing on the Island — a publication of Dance Victoria in support of the South Vancouver Island Dance Archives (which are housed at Dance Victoria). Makes a unique gift for the dance enthusiast in your life! It’s a new take on buy local. You can call 250-595-1829 or stop by 2750 Quadra St to get your copy! $26.25 (including tax)
Support for Local Dancers Dance Victoria works to respond to community need. Our local dance makers have told us that their biggest need is studio time — to create, rehearse and even perform. Last season we
Rough Cut with Company 605 Company 605 will be at Dance Victoria Studios on Saturday, November 26 at 5:00 pm with German Jauregui to share a Rough Cut: an informal behind-the-scenes showing of their collaborative work-in-progress. Jauregui is a director, choreographer, dancer and teacher, based in Brussels. Admission is FREE but seating is limited. To RSVP, call 250-595-1829 or email RSVP@dancevictoria.com with the subject line Company 605 Rough Cut.
Pre-Show Chats Presented by
Jessica Lang Dance Join us in the lobby from 6:50 to 7:15 pm for a chat with Jessica Lang, choreographer and artistic director of Jessica Lang Dance. Jessica will discuss the evening’s program and take any questions you may have. RWB’s Nutcracker Join us 45 minutes (1:15 pm for the matinees and 6:45 for the evenings) before the show for Nutcracker Story Time. Professional storyteller Jim Leard will recount the tale of Clara’s magical evening.
Pay Your Age Sponsored by
Pay Your Age is open to anyone aged 12 to 29. New this year — PYA tickets for all shows are on sale now! But hurry. There are only a limited number and they always sell out before show time.
refined our rental policies to create our new Free Studio Access program. Approved projects receive 60 hours of free studio time and an additional 40 hours at only $5/hour. Interested in learning more? Contact Stephen White, firstname.lastname@example.org or 250-595-1829.
4 Footnotes • Issue 52 • Fall 2016 • Dance Victoria’s 20th Anniversary Season
Collaborating with Jessica Lang Dance Victoria Interview with Stephanie Forsythe + Todd MacAllen, Directors and Lead Designers of molo thinking.” Are there any elements of your designs for Lang’s works that were “happy accidents”? Designs that began as “improvisations” and evolved into permanent design elements for her works? While experimenting with cloud softlight, we imagined and modelled them as illuminated tutus. When we presented the concept to Jessica, she loved the idea. These tutus were incorporated into Within the Space I Hold, and then reappeared in Escaping the Weight of Darkness, accompanied by cloud softlight pendants which gracefully soared above or fell to intimate distances with the dancers.
What did Jessica Lang bring to the meeting when you began your discussion for the design elements of Lines Cubed? Jessica brought us the concept of animating Piet Mondrian’s paintings and enlivening his bold line and colour through her dancers. She believed that molo’s designs had the potential to complement the concept. With the addition of softblocks, the performance could move the paintings off the canvas and into an even more immersive, three-dimensional experience by turning Mondrian’s grids into a flexible framework. Describe the set elements you designed for Lines Cubed that assist with bringing Piet Mondrian’s neoplasticism to life? What are they made of? The softblocks used in Lines Cubed are made from 50% recycled, 50% new long fibre kraft paper, and have been dyed black with a bamboo charcoal ink. As the performance continues, several customdyed softblocks appear, mirroring Mondrian’s investigations of primary colours much as the dancers’ costuming does. Their internal honeycomb geometry allows them to bend, flex, expand and contract with a fluidity and grace deserving of the talented dancers interacting with them. How do the dancers of Jessica Lang Dance interact with your designs in Lines Cubed? And for Within the Space I Hold? For Lines Cubed, the dancers gradually manipulate and change the grid formed by the softblocks, creating a shifting landscape of line and colour. In the case of Within the Space I Hold, physical interaction with the dancers is even more pronounced, with a modified version of our cloud softlight being worn as an illuminated tutu. I read that molo encourages “a way of working that leads to happy accidents and discoveries, inspiring design improvisation and original
What do you like most about working with Lang? Due to the nature of our products, we see our designs as building blocks for our clients or collaborators’ imagination. Once it is in their hands, they continue the design process. Working with Lang is a wonderful example of that, and she continues to see creative and beautiful uses for the designs. The casual grace of the rigging system devised for the cloud softlights in Escaping the Weight of Darkness was a very satisfying thing for us to experience and witness. How different/similar is your work creating designs for Lang’s works compared to your other design projects? Our work is still very much the same. It addresses issues of space making and creating designs which can adapt to multiple purposes — concepts which have always been at the heart of molo. Do you travel to be on-location when Lang is creating a new work? Do you collaborate online, in person or a combination of both? It has been an ongoing collaboration since our first encounter. When we have ideas for each other, we share them however we can, and they develop from there. How does being an architect inform your process for designing set pieces for stage productions like Lang’s choreography? Design thinking is a way of looking further ahead, and bringing a mass of intangible elements together in a comprehensive way. Architecture school made us realize that everything is a matter of scale — from a museum, to a person, to a teacup. In the same way, the performance itself takes on very different scales, from the delicate movements of a single dancer to the fluidity of the entire company. How one set piece sits, or how a dancer interacts with it, is an important part of the whole and is carefully considered. Where are the sets constructed for Lang’s works? Here in our Vancouver workshop. The pieces that we create for Lang are 99% air and only 1% material. Using an internal honeycomb structure, they flex, expand and contract with ease. When collapsed, they flatpack for shipping and travel to wherever Jessica and her dancers perform. FN
Lines Cubed. Jessica Lang Dance. Photo © Takao Komaru
How did your design collaboration with Jessica Lang Dance begin? molo’s work with Jessica Lang began in 2011 when she was commissioned to create a new work for the Birmingham Royal Ballet. Discovering molo products while doing research, she reached out to us and instigated what has become a successful and continued collaboration.
DanceVictoria.com • 5
Royal Winnipeg Ballet’s Nutcracker. Photo © Vince Pahkala
Royal Winnipeg Ballet’s Nutcracker Royal Winnipeg Ballet’s 2014 performance of Nutcracker remains the top-grossing production of all time for Dance Victoria. If you don’t have your tickets for this magical production, call the Box Office today! Subscribers enjoy a discount on regular price tickets. We are very excited to have the RWB back for their Canadian You will see children of all ages themed classic! Where else can and abilities in our Nutcracker you see dancers playing a audiences. The noise level and hockey game on a frozen pond enthusiasm may be higher and RCMP officers in battle than you are accustomed to in with the Rat King? The the theatre, but that is what gorgeous costumes and sets of makes these performances this production make this special. Thank you in advance production memorable. Adrian for your patience! Chamberlain of The Times Colonist, said the production is “…the most visually stunning Nutcracker I’ve ever seen…it’s worth catching the RWB’s Nutcracker, one of the most memorable to visit our city.” FN
KerryLynn Turner is teaching this year’s large Nutcracker ensemble of local children. A former dancer with Ballet BC, KerryLynn’s creative teaching style has been instrumental to the success of Victoria Academy of Ballet’s Post Secondary Bridge Program. KerryLynn has begun putting the party boys, party girls, Mounties, mice, reindeer, polar bears and angels (whew!!!) through the paces so they are ready for the big show in December.
Help us bring low income families and kids to Nutcracker. $65 from you brings disadvantaged kids to Nutcracker! For many kids, Nutcracker is their first experience of a professional dance performance, and their first experience hearing a live orchestra. To help make a dream come true for local children, call us at 250-595-1829 or visit DanceVictoria.com and click “Support Us.” The kids will love you for it! All donors are recognized in the Nutcracker program.
6 Footnotes • Issue 52 • Fall 2016 • Dance Victoria’s 20th Anniversary Season
Dance Victoria Hosted Tours Join Us in Spain in Spring 2018 Travel Partner
Dance Victoria’s Trips Coordinator Bill Hamar crafts amazing itineraries that are very popular with our subscribers and their friends. Our tours to Scandinavia and San Francisco in May/June 2017 are already SOLD OUT. Bill is now working on a 16 day, four-city tour of Spain in spring 2018 (Madrid, Seville, Grenada and Jerez de la Fronterra). This was a very popular tour when it was first offered in 2012. Mixing fiery flamenco performances with walking tours in historic districts, the Alhambra, the Prado Museum….
Spain is likely to sell out quickly, so to ensure you’re on the list to receive the itinerary in advance to the scheduled “on sale” date contact Bill at 250-595-1803 or email@example.com. These tours are fundraising events for Dance Victoria Society. A charitable tax receipt for a portion of the tour price is provided to each traveller.
Dance Victoria presents
A Choreographic Lab with Wen Wei Wang July 17 to 30, 2017 Dance Victoria Studios For many years, with assistance from the Canada Council and the private sector, Dance Victoria has offered creation and technical residencies to companies like battery opera performance, Wen Wei Dance, Kidd Pivot, Toronto Dance Theatre, Ballet BC, the 605 Collective, and others. In 2017, Dance Victoria is launching an ambitious new annual program. Working across communities in Vancouver and Victoria, Dance Victoria will host a choreographic lab for three emerging West Coast choreographers and six dancers under the artistic direction of Wen Wei Wang. The lab will extend over a two-week period in July 2017. Each day will begin with a 1.5-hour technique class and then Wang will give each choreographer a task, two dancers and a studio to begin generating dance material. At the end of each day, the new pieces will be shown to one another and you (you’re invited) with the opportunity for discussion. Stay tuned for more information on this exciting creative opportunity.
Business Cards Rack Cards & Post Cards Newsletters & Calendars Brochures & Flyers
609 Dunedin St., Victoria BC V8T 2L7 250-590-2998 www.fastracprinting.com
DanceVictoria.com • 7
Culture. Conversations. Cocktails. Sponsored by
For 30 to 45 year olds, Night Moves is an evening of dance at the theatre, and entry into an exclusive after-party of culture, conversations and cocktails at a unique location. • • • •
Experience exhilarating dance at a discounted price Meet the dancers from each of the companies Sample inventive cocktails and appetizers while listening to great music Socialize in a new downtown venue after every Saturday show
Dance Victoria has benefitted from the support of the region’s private sector to bring the best dance to Victoria. Thank you to both our returning and new sponsors. We welcome the following new sponsors this year: • Cardino Shoes • Carreiro The Studio • Cascadia Architects Inc.
Limited Night Moves memberships are available. Get yours early: we sold out in 2016! • Cascadia Liquor Single Night Moves tickets available through the Royal/McPherson Box Offices with proof of age I.D. Like us on Facebook.com: /nightmovesvictoria
• Charelli’s Cheese Shop, Delicatessen and Catering • Chateau Victoria • Julie Rust – Newport Realty • Parkside Hotel & Spa A big thanks to these folks and of course, to our returning sponsors.
Canada’s Chrystal Dance Prize Supported by
Canada’s Richest Prize for International Collaboration Dance Victoria is a leader in the development and support for dance artists in Canada. Its two Chrystal Dance Prizes have been developed to advance the careers of dance artists living in western Canada (MB, SK, AB, BC, YK). A committee of dance professionals considers: • Proposals from independent dance artists working with an international
Annual General Meeting partner on a new work (deadline: Nov 15) • Applications from dancers completing their training at a recognized international dance institution (deadline: mid-March). The prize can include a two-week residency at Dance Victoria Studios and a potential presentation in an upcoming Dance Victoria season. To learn more, visit DanceVictoria.com
List Your Property with Recently, Dance Victoria Executive Producer Stephen White sold a property with the assistance of DFH Realtor Anny Schaefer. Schaeffer is one of the DFH realtors that donate 10% of their commission to Dance Victoria when a patron mentions Dance Victoria as a referral. If you are in the market to buy or sell, we would love you to call DFH at 250-477-7291 and and ask for agents Anny Schaefer, Dorothee Friese and Terry Moore, Peter Crichton or Rosemary Tullet.
Sunday, January 15, 2017 • 7:00 pm Dance Victoria Studios (Milne Studio) 2750 Quadra Street Join us as we celebrate a successful year and discuss our future plans. If you have donated $100 or more to the Society since July 1, 2015, you are a member in good standing. If you’re unsure of your status, call us at 250-595-1829 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Memberships will be available at the meeting. The meeting will be followed by a reception. RSVP: RSVP@dancevictoria.com
Diane Duruisseau and Thomas Weber. Photo © Tom Overton. Ziyian Kwan and Noam Gagnon in The Mars Hotel. Photo © David Cooper. BalletBoyz in Life. Photo © Hugo Glendinning. The Company in Alonzo King’s Sand. Phtoo © Chris Hardy. The Company in Les Grands Ballets Canadiens‘ Minus One. Photo © John Hall.
8 Footnotes • Issue 52 • Fall 2016 • Dance Victoria’s 20th Anniversary Season
Dance Victoria presents
Cherish – Celebrate Dance Victoria’s 20th Anniversary Saturday, February 25 • 7:30 pm ONE NIGHT ONLY • Tickets: $75 Dance Victoria Studios (2750 Quadra) NOW ON SALE! Limited seating Phone 250-595-1829 or visit dancevictoria.com/studios/cherish2017 Ballroom Blitz and Bling! Dance Victoria has teamed up with revered local ballroom instructor Wanda Kivitt and the Victoria Ballroom Dance Society to create an unforgettable evening of glamour and glitz. Join us for a celebratory cocktail in the lobbies at Dance Victoria. Peruse an array of silent auction items, refill your glass then take your seats under the mirror ball in the beautiful ballroom, watch Victoria’s most talented ballroom and Latin dancers and feast on delicacies from Charelli’s Cheese Shop and Delicatessen. Proceeds support Dance Victoria’s community programs.
Next DANCE DAYS It’ll Move You January 20 to 29, 2017 In studios all over town Ten days of free dance classes in all kinds of styles. The complete guide to free classes, workshops, studio showings and performances will be available online at DanceVictoria.com, Jan. 9 or pick up a printed guide at any Serious Coffee location on Southern Vancouver Island.
Dance at the Royal Subscribers can buy additional tickets to Dance Victoria any time of the year and save 20%.
BALLETBOYZ® January 20 + 21 • 7:30 pm Royal Theatre Life: Rabbit & Fiction
ALONZO KING LINES BALLET THE MARS HOTEL January 27 + 28 • 7:30 pm TICKETS NOW ON SALE Metro Studio Theatre $25 (+ $3.50 admin fee) Tickets: 250-386-6121 or DanceVictoria.com Performed live by the trio Handmade Blade (Peggy Lee, cello; Aram Bajakian, guitar; JP Carter, trumpet), The Mars Hotel unravels the word “love” through a series of vignettes. Off-kilter episodes keep us off-balance and throw us offcourse in this humourous, witty, modern work.
March 10 + 11 • 7:30 pm Royal Theatre Shostakovich & Sand
LES GRANDS BALLETS CANADIENS DE MONTRÉAL April 7 + 8 • 7:30 pm Royal Theatre Minus One
Dance Victoria's Footnotes 52 features Jessica Lang Dance "Mixed repertoire of five contemporary ballet works" Royal Winnipeg Ballet & Victo...
Published on Nov 15, 2016
Dance Victoria's Footnotes 52 features Jessica Lang Dance "Mixed repertoire of five contemporary ballet works" Royal Winnipeg Ballet & Victo...