Durham Independent Dance Artists reveals its second season of local indie dance | Arts
Arts
INDY Week's arts blog

Archives | RSS | Follow on

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Durham Independent Dance Artists reveals its second season of local indie dance

Posted by on Wed, Aug 19, 2015 at 1:00 PM

click to enlarge Anja Müller - PHOTO COURTESY OF DIDA
  • photo courtesy of DIDA
  • Anja Müller
After an impressive 2014–15 debut season that significantly raised the profile of local independent dance, Durham Independent Dance Artists returns with an exciting lineup for 2015–16. Running from October to May, the nine shows include six premieres, seven artists not previously seen on DIDA stages and, for the first time, an international guest.

DIDA bundles works by local independent artists into a season that tracks with the academic presenters' schedule, helping them build the surface area required to attract audiences. It paid off with many sold-out houses in the first season—no small feat in a region where indie dance more typically attracts small crowds of family and friends.

For the first season, co-founders Lightsey Darst, Nicola Bullock, Justin Tornow and Leah Wilks assembled a run with a technology-infused, theatrical sensibility and a preference for nontraditional spaces. Now they build on that foundation by trying to offer audiences a more curated season and artists a more robust set of support tools. 

click to enlarge Jessi Knight - PHOTO BY ALEC HIMWICH
  • photo by Alec Himwich
  • Jessi Knight
The season mixes emerging and experienced artists. As knightworks, Durham-based sisters Jessi and Christina Knight premiere Eurydice Descended (Nov. 20 and 21, times and place TBA), their first evening-length work. The myth of Orpheus and Eurydice is no stranger to dance and theater, but the Knights weave in fresh strands of "Haitian funeral imagery, house music and drag culture." And Jasmine Powell's Shadows Chasing Light (April 21 and 22, 8 p.m., PSI Theater), her first full-length performance, blends ensemble movement, music, visual art and the spiritual poetry of Brian Bowers. Killian Manning has been staging dance in the region for decades. She offers Now Boarding … (Feb. 25–28, 8 p.m., Common Ground Theatre), which imagines an airport as "a microcosm of the world."

Two consecutive performances underscore DIDA's close relationship with Saxapahaw arts nonprofit Culture Mill. Berlin's Anja Müller, DIDA’s first international artist, comes by way of a Culture Mill residency. Her solo show, La Mula (Dec. 17 and 18, 8 p.m., The Carrack Modern Art), deploys heavy beats in an assessment of an "entertainment-crazed culture." And Culture Mill co-founders Tommy Noonan and Murielle Elizéon perform What Doesn’t Work at the Carrack (Dec. 19 at 8 p.m. and Dec. 20 at 3 p.m.), where Noonan was last seen performing his athletic duet with Clint Lutes, Brother Brother. Müller joins the couple to create "a symphony of movement without composition."

“One of our favorite things about the independent dance scene in Durham is the way in which people make dance happen everywhere,” Wilks says in a press release. Though many locations are yet to be announced, DIDA will be found in bars, art galleries, warehouse spaces and small theaters—venues more accessible for younger, newer dance audiences than formal halls. Many performances will have site-specific elements.

click to enlarge Murielle Elizéon, Tommy Noonan and Anja Müller - PHOTO BY M. KORBEL
  • photo by M. Korbel
  • Murielle Elizéon, Tommy Noonan and Anja Müller
Wilks, Bullock and Matthew Young premiere their first evening-length work as Department of Improvised Dance, Stations (Oct. 9 and 10, 7 and 9 p.m., 809 Ramseur St.) in an ad hoc space dubbed Durable Durham Warehouse, in honor of its former life as Durable Durham Hosiery. Ginger Wagg’s AndAlwaysWhy (May 6–15, times and place TBA) is an “experiential installation” where audiences are “invited to walk through situations and spaces that evolve over the course of the evening.” Murmurations Dance’s Nicole Dagesse also offers a “site-nomadic performance” in Birthing Bodies (April 29–May 1, times and place TBA), which is informed by the history of homebirth in North Carolina.

DIDA learned one of the perils of being an artist-driven organization when two performers booked their shows on the same weekend in the first season. The curators exert more oversight in the second, making sure shows are evenly spaced on the calendar and keeping them clear of universal distractions such as March Madness.

click to enlarge Murmurations Dance’s Birthing Bodies - PHOTO BY ALLIE MULLIN
  • photo by Allie Mullin
  • Murmurations Dance’s Birthing Bodies
DIDA is also expanding its mission to aid in the professional development of local dance artists. Already offering promotional resources, it plans to add workshops on topics from grant-writing to fundraising and, eventually, production resources for rental or free use by their artists. The first announced workshop (time and place TBA) is the intriguing "Writing for Dancers / Dancing for Writers," which "connects dance artists with critics and future critics, with the aim of improving dance discourse in the Triangle."

DIDA’s first season opened with real.live.people.durham’s showbiz-savvy dance-theater work, it’s not me it’s you, at a sold-out Motorco Music Hall. With its location and content, Anna Barker’s duet with Wilks firmly planted DIDA’s flag in young Durham. Fittingly, DIDA’s 2015–16 season closes with Barker’s second full-length work, Our Feature Presentation (May 27–29, times and place TBA), another duet with Wilks. It promises “full-throated contemporary dance and full-throttle humor”—thrills this duo has already proven able to deliver.

The full schedule is below. More information will soon be available at www.didaseason.com, undergoing maintenance at the time of this posting.


DIDA 2015/16 SEASON:

Season Launch Party
Sept. 18, 6 p.m., Bar Lusconi

The Department of Improvised Dance: Stations
Oct. 9 and 10, 7 and 9 p.m., Durable Durham Warehouse (809 Ramseur St.)

knightworks: Eurydice Descended
Nov. 20 and 21, time and place TBA

Anja Müller: La Mula
December 17 and 18, 8 p.m., The Carrack Modern Art

Tommy Noonan and Murielle Elizéon: What Doesn’t Work
Dec. 19 (8 p.m.) and 20 (3 p.m.), The Carrack Modern Art

Killian Manning/NoForwardingAddress: Now Boarding …
February 25–28, 8 p.m., Common Ground Theatre

Jasmine Powell: Shadows Chasing Light
April 21 and 22, 8 p.m., PSI Theater

Murmurations Dance: Birthing Bodies
April 29–May 1, times and place TBA

Ginger Wagg: AndAlwaysWhy
May 6–15, times and place TBA

real.live.people.durham: Our Feature Presentation
May 27–29, times and place TBA

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Pin It

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Arts



Twitter Activity

Comments

I certainly heard the accents.

by Elizabeth A Margolis on Theater Review: The South Is Hard to Hear in the Opera Version of Charles Frazier's Cold Mountain (Arts)

Nice write up. Love the twists and turns and I hardily agree with the ultimate statement (and Camus since I …

by Perry on As the Durham Bulls Enter the Playoffs, We Wonder: What Exactly Is the Value of a Minor-League Championship? (Arts)

Most Read

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

Most Recent Comments

I certainly heard the accents.

by Elizabeth A Margolis on Theater Review: The South Is Hard to Hear in the Opera Version of Charles Frazier's Cold Mountain (Arts)

Nice write up. Love the twists and turns and I hardily agree with the ultimate statement (and Camus since I …

by Perry on As the Durham Bulls Enter the Playoffs, We Wonder: What Exactly Is the Value of a Minor-League Championship? (Arts)

Just saw this last night. Did Rubin say that being around the Avetts would make life "matter" or just that …

by Drew Rhys on Full Frame: An Avetts Agnostic Finds Some Faith in May It Last: A Portrait of the Avett Brothers (Arts)

She made me a peanut butter and banana sandwichwithout bread. Now that's art.

by Geoff Dunkak on ADF Review: Queering Objects and Decoding the Body in Cherdonna's Clock that Mug or Dusted (Arts)

Maybe the lack of young people in attendance is partly because of the way the NC Gay and Lesbian Film …

by Jonathan H on A Twenty-One-Year-Old Finds a Welcoming Space at the Twenty-Two-Year-Old N.C. Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (Arts)

© 2017 Indy Week • 320 E. Chapel Hill St., Suite 200, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation