USC Dance Company is ‘On the Edge’
By: Frenche` Brewer, Brewer4@mailbox.sc.edu, 803-777-3691
The University of South Carolina Dance Company will have the audience on the edge of its seats when dancers perform works that were created specifically for them in the production “On the Edge” at Drayton Hall Theatre, Feb. 13-16.
Shows are at 7:30 p.m. each evening. Tickets for the concerts are $12 for students, $16 for USC faculty, staff, military and seniors 60 and older and $18 for the general public. Tickets can be purchased in advance at the Koger Center box office, (803) 777-5112, or charged by phone at (803) 251-2222.
The performances were choreographed by professional dance artists Amanda Miller, the former resident choreographer for William Forsythe's Ballet Frankfurt and William Evans, an internationally known choreographer, performer, teacher and movement analyst.
Miller's untitled creation was inspired by the choreographer's improvisation work with the dancers last year.
"We're really trying to give our students these experiences where they begin to understand that choreography isn't always boxed in, where you take it out like a pair of shoes and every time it's the same shoe. As it starts to live, it should be breathing constantly," Miller says.
Guest artist William Evans' work, “Dreamtime,” was created for the dancers when he worked with them last fall. Evans is known for his invention of a modern dance technique that emphasizes total mind-body integration, and that technique has influenced dancers and dance instructors for the past 35 years.
Instructor Diane McGhee Valle, director of USC's dance education track, says that the dance explores movement from crawling to creeping to walking. “The piece is an experience of the power of the natural world…primal, grounded, powerful and full-bodied," Valle says.
The S.C. Dance Company will also perform works created by USC assistant professors Thaddeus Davis and Tanya Wideman-Davis, artistic directors for Wideman/Davis Dance Company. “If Only I...,” the contemporary dance theatre work, which debuted last fall in the “Voices of Choreography concert, rounds out the evening.
“It's beneficial for us to bring in guest artists who will pull the dancers out of their comfort zone, so when they get back to us, they go, 'Wow, I get it.' It reinforces the ideas we've been teaching for the entire time they have been here with us," Davis says.