Department of Dance presents Fall Dance Fest

Fall Dance Fest 2017 poster
Fall Dance Fest 2017 poster

The Department of Dance is presenting Fall Dance Fest over Homecoming Weekend, showcasing the artistic talents of Radford University faculty and students.

Fall Dance Fest is on Oct. 5 and 6 from 7:30-8:30 p.m. and Oct. 7 from 2-3 p.m., with all shows in Bondurant Auditorium inside Preston Hall. Fall Dance Fest features original work from four choreographers - Department of Dance Interim Chair and Associate Professor Inessa Plekhanova, Assistant Professors Ji-Eun Lee and Amy VanKirk, and Associate Professor Deborah McLaughlin.

Plekhanova’s composition is opening the Fall Dance Fest program and is a traditional classical ballet piece danced on pointe. The piece features eight dancers in the main cast and three understudies.

“The name of the piece is Waltz from ‘Swan Lake,’ originally choreographed by me on the music of P. Tchaikovsky,” Plekhanova said. “This piece is a preview of the upcoming ‘Evening of Ballet,’ which takes place on Nov. 9 and Nov. 11 in Bondurant Auditorium, Preston Hall. This Waltz will be performed again along with other excerpts from classical ballet repertoire.”

The main component of Lee’s composition is apathy.

“Apathy makes a person disappear,” Lee explained. “But I would like to reveal the slightly different concept of apathy. Apathy can sow the seeds of empathy, through one's need to understand its cruelty. The concept of disappearance is also looked at in various ways. Disappearance does not simply mean the state of non-existence. Rather, it is more akin to the process of finding a way to the exit in a maze. Apathy motivates the person to disappear, but at the same time, it offers the possibility of creating completely different identities in new circumstances. This dance piece explores many sides of the concept of apathy."

VanKirk’s piece, “Fragmentation 119.3,” explores the deconstruction and reconstruction of music in order to represent a chaotic and overwhelming sense of existence.

“The music selection for my new work is a mixture of Simon and Garfunkel and Sylvan Esso, two very different artists.” VanKirk said. “By overlapping rhythms in the music and movement the dancers illustrate the multiple thought processes and conflicts in an overwhelmed mind.”

There are seven dancers and three understudies in VanKirk’s piece, and 31 dance students total performing in and helping with the technical aspects of the Fall Dance Fest.

Oct 4, 2017
Max Esterhuizen