Velocity Presents THE MIDSUMMER
Velocity Dance Center and the gray are thrilled to announce the world premiere of The Midsummer, running Oct 19-21 at Velocity's Founder's Theater. The gray is a brand new dance company in Seattle, and for its inaugural piece, artistic director and choreographer Beth Terwilleger has curated a stellar artistic team that features dancers from Seattle gems Whim W'him, Evoke Productions, The Three Yells, and Coriolis Dance among others. A veritable feminist powerhouse, this female-choreographed experimental ballet work is also scored with original music by the critically acclaimed cellist and composer Julia Kent.
"Julia Kent wrenches swirling, atmospheric symphonies from a cello, her hard-working loop pedal, and an always-mesmerising arsenal of intimate field recordings." -Village Voice
Terwilleger recently comes to Seattle after a long and illustrious career with Ballet Austin in Texas. Her extensive resume includes performing works by George Balanchine (Suzanne Farrell Ballet), Nicolo Fonte (Oregon Ballet Theater), Dominic Walsh (Dominic Walsh Dance Theater), KT Nelson (ODC), Robert Dekkers (Post:Ballet), and more.
The Midsummer blends contemporary ballet choreography with theatrical storytelling to bring to life Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, taking the audience on a journey into the minds and hearts of the four central lovers. But don't come expecting an old rehash of Shakespeare's classic: in the woods beyond the reach of society's pressures and expectations, The Midsummer's four main characters enter into a shadowy and haunted ground where they confront their darkest impulses and desires.
THE GRAY, founded by Beth Terwilleger in 2018, aims to cultivate empathy through dance and movement arts. Its work grounds the elevated language of contemporary ballet in the immediacy and earnestness of storytelling to create a more equitable and immersive relationship between dancers and audience, and to mobilize dance as a catalyst for connecting with others across identities and experiences of difference. the gray's dances draw energy and high emotional intensity of literature and narrative, infusing movement with visceral, psychological potency.
Performance Dates + Times:
Thursday, OCT 19; 8PM
Friday, OCT 20; 8PM
Saturday, OCT 21; 8PM
Location: Velocity; 1621 12th Ave, Seattle
Tickets: $20 advance ($25 at the door); $17 MVP members; $15 under 25 (w/ ID); $50 Patron
Open Rehearsal for Press
Friday October 12, 12:30-1:30PM
Velocity; 1621 12th Ave, Seattle
BETH TERWILLEGER (choreographer) is a local choreographer, creating and producing dance works in Seattle, Washington through her company, The Gray. Beth has spent her career in the dance world working primarily in Austin, TX with Ballet Austin and freelancing in both San Francisco and London. She has developed, produced, and directed accessible art performances in both Austin and London and hopes to continue to grow her work and research in Seattle with the creation of her company, the gray. Beth's choreographic passions lie in the creation of emotional storytelling pieces and in-depth character development with the focus on connecting and speaking with the audience. https://www.bethterwilleger.com/
JULIA KENT (composer) is a Canadian-born, New York City-based Julia Kent found her own voice with her solo debut, Delay, an exploration of the private emotional worlds that exist within the disjunctions and disorientations of travel, hailed for its "lovely, melancholy" compositions, full of "aching romanticism...rich melodicism, and detailed arrangements." Since then, she has released four records, including Asperities in 2015, produced under the Leaf Label. Last Day in July, and Green and Grey, both of which were met with critical acclaim. In addition to her solo albums, Julia Kent has composed a number of original film scores, as well as music for theatre and dance performances. She has toured throughout Europe and North America, including appearances at Primavera Sound in Barcelona, the Donau festival in Austria, Meltdown in London, the Unsound festival in New York City, Reeperbahn in Hamburg, CTM in Berlin, and Mutek in Montreal.
MELISSA SANDERSON (dancer) is a choreographer, performer, improvisor, and educator. Her work has been supported through the World Dance Alliance Global Summit in Newfoundland, Canada, WDA's International Young Choreographers Project in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, Austin Dance Festival, Texas Dance Improvisational Festival, BOOST Dance Festival, and Full Tilt. Sanderson has recently danced with Jordan Fuchs Company, Coriolis Dance, and General Magic. She holds a B.F.A. in Dance (2010) from San Diego State University and a M.F.A. in Dance (2014) from Texas Woman's University and teaches as Adjunct Faculty at Bellevue College, Eastfield College, and Tarrant County College.
JIM KENT (dancer) is originally from Minnesota and Hawai'i. He holds a BFA in Dance from Cornish College of the Arts and has performed in Seattle for the last 12 years, working and touring with Scott/Powell Performance, Mark Haim, zoe | juniper, Dayna Hanson and Saint Genet. He is currently in his 9th season with Whim W'Him and plays piano for Diverse Harmony, Seattle's queer-straight youth chorus.
Leah Russell (dancer) received her BFA in acting from Cornish College of the Arts in 2013 but since then, has directed her passion and focus towards dance. With an insatiable fascination for movement, she explores a wide range of disciplines from contemporary and modern dance, to hip hop, capoeira and tai chi. This year, she had appeared in The Winter Bridge Project, Converge Dance Festival, and CLEAR. As an actor, Leah has performed in Shakespeare's version of a Midsummer's Night Dream three times previously and is thrilled to dive into a dark interpretation of the story from a dance perspective.
SUMAYA MULLA-CARILLO (dancer) is a dancer, writer and arts administrator. She is a recent graduate of Cornish College with her BFA in Dance, and she is currently dancing for Seattle based artists The Three Yells, Alice Gosti, Molly Scott, and Beth Terwilliger. She is excited to be dancing in this new work!
CORBIN HALL (dancer) hails from Collinsville, Illinois, and graduated from Webster University with his BA in Dance, in the spring of 2016. While there, he learned and worked with such artists as Beckah Reed, Michael Uthoff, Maggi Dueker, Monica Newsom, and Alicia Graf Mack. Corbin has thrived in his versatility, studying ballet, jazz, modern, capoeira, Thai Classical Dance, aerial, breakdancing, and hip hop. Corbin moved to Seattle in January, 2017 to pursue dance performance and choreographic opportunities.
THE GRAY was founeded with the mission to cultivate empathy through art. Artistic director Beth Terwilleger draws inspiration from minds that are different from hers and strives to connect with others through dance and movement. the gray is a research company with experimentation and risk at its core, driven by the aim to develop a new relationship between the public and dance. The goal for Terwillger and her company is always to play, learn, and evolve.
Velocity is Seattle's forward-thinking laboratory and essential incubator for artists, new dance works, critical conversations, community, and teachers. A national nexus for dance, Velocity is recognized as a leader in a new dance development in the US and is instrumental in making Seattle a destination city with one of the most active dance communities in the nation. With artist-led classes and workshops daily, performances weekly; two annual festivals, the Seattle Festival of Dance Improvisation and Strictly Seattle; year-round subsidized studio and theater rentals; and ongoing humanities programs that activate thoughtful conversations; Velocity is a portal for those new to dance and an important community resources. Velocity is Seattle's only dedicated contemporary dance venue where groundbreaking work and disciplined practice coexist.
Home to hundreds of independent dance artists and renowned for producing innovative, cutting-edge work, Velocity's artist development programs have fostered the early work and careers of Cherdonna, Zoe Scofield, Dani Tirrell, Kate Wallich, Danielle Agami, Alice Gosti, Kim Lusk, Coleman Pester and 100s more; and was the first to bring to Seattle the work of art stars Tere O'Connor, Miguel Gutierrez, Anouk van Dijk, Bebe Miller, Deborah Hay, Ralph Lemon, Faye Driscoll, Monica Bill Barnes and many more.
Velocity also supports YC2 in partnership with Studio Kate Wallich, a platform for young dance professionals entering the working field to exercise artistic agency while receiving consistent contracted training, rehearsal and performance opportunities.
Velocity advances contemporary dance and movement-based art by fostering the creative explorations or artists and audiences through an invested commitment to education, creation, performance, inquiry, community participation, and inter/national exchange.