Time Lapse Dance Stages POLAR RHYTHMS: DANCE AND MUSIC OF ICE at Speyer Hall Today
Global warming meets dance in "POLAR RHYTHMS: DANCE AND MUSIC OF ICE," a program presented by choreographer Jody Sperling and her company Time Lapse Dance with the Performance Project at University Settlement, Speyer Hall, beginning today, June 2 and continuing through June 4, 2016.
Alaskan-born composer Matthew Burtner, a specialist in the music of ice, comes to NYC to play live for the four-performance run.
The Arctic ice sheet is melting -- and fast. We've already lost 80% of the volume of Arctic sea ice and this winter's low extent shows the trend is accelerating. This loss has profound consequences for the global climate system, wildlife, ocean health, the world's fisheries, resource exploitation and humanity's capacity for survival.
What's one way to drive that message home? Answer: with powerfully moving and beautiful art. Featured on the covers of Dance Teacher and Origin Magazine (in the Top 100 Creatives), Sperling has forged a dance style that conjures up the dynamism and fragility of the polar environment.
IF YOU GO:
Polar Rhythms: Dance and Music of Ice
Thursday, June 2 at 8pm
Performance, followed by talkback with Burtner and Sperling.
Friday, June 3 at 8pm
Performance, followed by panel on the Arctic, climate and the arts.
Saturday, June 4 at 2pm
Performance, followed by children's workshop
Saturday June 4 from 5-6:30pm
Impacts Hour, curated by Human Impacts Institute (free)
Saturday, June 4 at 7pm
Speyer Hall | University Settlement | 184 Eldridge Street
Online Sales: polarrhythms.bpt.me
Phone Sales: 800.838.3006
ABOUT THE PROGRAM:
Global warming meets dance in a program inspired by Jody Sperling's experience dancing on the melting Arctic icecap. Sperling, who participated in a polar science mission as a choreographer-in-residence aboard an icebreaker, transports the stunning icescape to the stage with her dance company of six dancers. They are joined by Alaskan-born composer Matthew Burtner, a specialist in the music of snow and ice, who will perform his chilling music live.
The program features a new evolution of Sperling and Burtner's collaboration Ice Cycle. Danced by six women, the piece gels in crystalline formations, as it explores the dynamic interplay of ice and water. Video projections from Sperling's voyage play upon the dancers white silk costumes transforming their undulating surfaces into icy fractals. Other moments in the piece suggest the unfolding of an eternal horizon and the shimmering manifestation of an aurora.
Visual artists Amy-Claire Huestis and Omar Zubair, who fuse hand-manipulated magic-lantern media with video feedback projections, join Sperling and Burtner for the occasion piece Visions of Ice, a spontaneous light, image, movement and music installation evoking terrestrial ice formations as well as interstellar ones.
The Time Lapse Dancers will also perform a revival of the company's signature climate-themed work Turbulence (2011), which distills patterns of air disturbance into kinetic sculptural forms.
The Polar Rhythms performances will serve as a springboard throughout the weekend for conversations about the Arctic, climate change and climate solutions. The opening night performance on June 2 will be followed by a discussion with Sperling and Burtner on their experiences working in the Arctic and the changes happening there.
The Friday June 3 performance will be followed by a panel discussion moderated by Sperling with playwright Chantal Bilodeau, author of The Arctic Cycle series of plays, and Arctic scientist Allan Frei, Professor of Geography at Hunter College and expert on the impact of climate change on the NYC water supply.
Following the Saturday 2pm matinee, Time Lapse Dance will lead a free workshop for children of all ages combining dance and the science of fluid dynamics.
Saturday from 5-6:30pm the public is invited to "Impacts Hour," curated by Human Impacts Institute. A roster of climate solutions innovators share short presentations on concrete ways to get involved with climate activism now. Doors open at 5pm for a climate mingle, with presentations from 5:45-6:15pm, followed by further networking opportunities.
Time Lapse Dance ensemble of six women dancers are Jenny Campbell, Carly Cerasuolo, Lior Daniel, Alejandra Dominguez, Halley Gerstel and Krissy Tate. Costumes are by Mary Jo Mecca and lighting is designed by Bessie-Award winning designer David Ferri.
Jody Sperling (Artistic Director/Choreographer) is a dancer-choreographer based in New York City. She has created more than 40 works and has performed and taught in the US, Bahrain, Canada, France, India, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Nigeria, Russia, Scotland and north of the Arctic Circle. In 2014, Sperling participated in a polar science mission to the Arctic as the first choreographer-in-residence aboard a US Coast Guard icebreaker. During the expedition, she danced on the polar ice cap a dozen times and made the award-winning dance film Ice Floe. For Time Lapse Dance, Sperling has forged a unique style inspired by modern dance pioneer Loïe Fuller. Internationally regarded as the leading exponent of Fuller's genre, she has taken the idiom into innovative directions. Sperling is the choreographer, creative consultant and dance coach for the forthcoming French feature film La Danseuse which is based on Fuller's life and will be featured at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival.
Matthew Burtner (Composer), a specialist in concert chamber music and interactive new media, has composed many works that explore the unique acoustical environment of the Arctic. Burtner spent his childhood in the far north of Alaska and this profoundly shaped his musical language. He is the leading expert on the eco-acoustics of snow and ice, and has worked extensively with systems of climatology applied to music. Burtner has received numerous international awards, accolades and commissions, including recently, a commission from the US State Department for the occasion of President Obama's visit to Alaska.
Amy-Claire Huestis (Visual Artist) makes a space to encounter the mysterious and to suspend a state of wonder in her interdisciplinary practice of expanded painting, light, and experimental media. One of her unique projects is to pioneer the re-invention of the magic lantern projector. She brings the device and its form forward with the contemporary technology of plasma light and with her own painted and shadow-cut light pictures.
Omar Zubair (Visual Artist) is utilizing skills developed and continually honed through art practice, scientific experimentation, and trans-ethnographic participation. He has been focusing on expanding the scope of reality by creating a process of bringing back artifacts from the dream place, catalysing the growth of new sensory organs via confocal synaesthetics, and building placetimes & languages from which multi-species groups can come together into temporary superorganisms.
The Performance Project offers local young artists and professionally emerging artists opportunities to connect, create and publicly present new work. We hear the call to mentor, encourage, and diversify our art makers, leaders, educators and students. Our aim is to encourage greater participation in the live arts and to help cultivate richly diverse creative communities.
University Settlement is one of New York's most dynamic social justice institutions with deep roots on the Lower East Side. Each year University Settlement's diverse programs assist over 30,000 low-income and at-risk people to build better lives for themselves and their families. With an impressive legacy as the first settlement house in the United States, University Settlement has been an incubator for progressive ideas for 130 years, offering pioneering programs in mental health, early childhood education, literacy, arts education, and adolescent development that set the standard. Building on the strength of this experience, University Settlement now provides services at 31 locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn. To learn more, visit www.universitysettlement.org.