UMBRELLA Takes Pole Dancing To A New Level At The Viper Room

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UMBRELLA Takes Pole Dancing To A New Level At The Viper Room

Taking pole dancing to a whole new level, Kelly Maglia Vertical Theatre is pleased to present "Umbrella: A Pole Play," combining elements of bordello and Broadway, circus and concert, pole and dialogue - all packed into a story.

"Umbrella" will be one-night only, at 8 p.m. Sunday, April 4 at The Viper Room 8852 W. Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood. Free pole dance lessons will follow.

Maglia - pole dancer, musician, playwright, dancer and gymnast - has taken a dance form that has traditionally been associated with strippers and has developed an artistic piece that includes text, story and original music, all revolving around a pole.

"I've never heard of anyone doing anything like this," Maglia, of West Hollywood, says.
"I'm beyond passionate about his," she adds. "On a personal level, it's been a way to combine all of my talents and interests. The other reason I'm excited about this is I find live theater is sometimes stuffy and distances itself from the audience.

"With this piece, I have combined the playfulness of the erotic with the seriousness of theater."
Maglia started pole dancing two years ago and has been publicly performing the form for six months.

"When I started pole dancing in 2008, I immediately realized the theatrical and symbolic potential of a pole," she says. "What the pole does is allow you to move in the air, but you also have the ground."

In her performances, Maglia has taken a balletic approach to the pole, but "Umbrella" combines ballet with contemporary dance. Inspired by a darker and more ironic take on Rihanna's hit song of the same name, "Umbrella" follows a woman who seeks validation, security, and sexual self-definition from others and comes to the realization that these must always come from within, she says.

The piece is directed by Jamie Virostko and features dancers Lar Hovsepian, Jennifer Kim, Midori Murata, and Adrienne Strauss and actors Hannah Crum and Ana Persun. Original music is composed by Alex Williamson, and the musicians are Ariela Marin, Axel Enoc and Williamson. Costumes are by Maglia.

Maglia, who has studied voice, acting, dance and playwriting in New York, won a British Marshall Scholarship to study theater in London. She received her bachelor's degree in music and theater from the University of California at Irvine and a bachelor's in English from Goldsmiths College at the University of London.

She is the co-founder (with her sister) and owner of her own dance costume company, Triple Threat Dancewear (www.triplethreatdancewear.com).

Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. For tickets call (310) 962-9784 or go to www.brownpapertickets.com/event/103990.

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