arts   |   theater

'The 2019 Winter Dance Concert: Making Spaces' will feature ballet, Beach Boys


Ryan Galloway and Shannon Kazan perform the piece Minor Bodies on Jan. 16, 2014, for the IU Contemporary Dance Theatre's Winter Dance Concert. The production ran at Ruth N. Halls Theatre.  IDS file photo

The phrases “Good Game, Yo!” and “Gender is a Concept” are not commonly associated with each other. At IU’s Winter Dance Concert, they are the names of dance routines.

“The 2019 Winter Dance Concert: Making Spaces” runs Feb. 8-10 at the Ruth N. Halls Theatre. Tickets start at $10 for students.

Amanda Hoover, a senior double majoring in contemporary dance and cinema and media production, said “Making Spaces” is a versatile show.

“When people think of dance, they think of ballerinas,” Hoover said. “They put their hands on their head and spin around. This concert ranges from house hip-hop routines to traditional contemporary dance. We have Afro-modern pieces. It’s really all over the place.”

Renowned dancer and choreographer Twyla Tharp created her piece, “Deuce Coupe,” with Beach Boys music, marking the ballet as the first ever written that blended modern and traditional dance techniques. Hoover said about ten different Beach Boys songs will play during the 30-minute performance.

Tharp created the piece in 1973. Hoover said dance and movement styles were much different then than they are now.

“It was really interesting to try to embody what dancers were doing in the past,” Hoover said. “A lot of it is experimental improvisation, which is something I’ve never been able to do on a proscenium stage at Indiana University.”

“Home”, by choreographer Rennie Harris, pulls from black dance aesthetic, such as house and hip-hop. The African American Dance Company is collaborating for the first time with Contemporary Dance on the piece.

“Nachthexen,” or “Night Witches,” is the a routine interested in the personal stories of the dancers as well as current events. The name refers to the World War II-era German nickname for Soviet Air Force pilots and features an all-female cast.

“Diva Redux,” based on the 1981 cult film “Diva,” features voguing, a style of modern dance that evolved predominantly out of the black, gay community in Harlem in the ‘70s and ‘80s.

“I’ve never seen voguing done at a contemporary dance concert,” said Jaylen Ray, a junior in contemporary dance. “Bringing in that new movement genre is a whole new exciting realm of possibilities for what dance represents and who dance represents.”

“Good Game, Yo!” uses sections where dancers play football or use basketballs to create movement.

“‘Good Game, Yo!’ is bringing in all types of sports and the rawness of masculinity that also has some voguing in it, to paint a picture of how we exist as people,” Ray said.

Ray said whether you’re a Bloomington local or from the heart of New York City, you’ll be able to see and find yourself in this concert.

“This is the furthest we’ve stepped out of the box,” Ray said. “Coming to this concert will literally open your mind to so many ways of thinking, moving, existing.”

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