February 9, 2016

Program in Dance presents International Dance Platform: Contemporary Dance in Turkey, Poland, Canada

Four-day series of informal performances, a panel discussion, and master classes around the premiere of Rebecca Lazier’s new work “There Might be Others”

The Lewis Center for the Arts’ Program in Dance at Princeton University will present International Dance Platform: Contemporary Dance in Turkey, Poland, Canada, which brings seven international dancer-choreographers to Princeton for a series of master classes, a panel discussion, and informal performances. The series leads up to the New York Live Arts premiere of faculty member Rebecca Lazier’s new work “There Might Be Others.”

Jakob Wittchen for Art Stations Foundation by Grażyna Kulczyk

Jakob Wittchen for Art Stations Foundation by Grażyna Kulczyk

The events of the International Dance Platform will take place at various times between Saturday, February 27 and Tuesday, March 1 at 185 Nassau Street and New South on the Princeton campus and are presented in collaboration with Princeton’s Institute for International and Regional Studies and Program in Canadian Studies.

The Platform’s aim is to bring international perspectives to the study and practice of dance at Princeton. Students will have the opportunity to learn about the various ecologies of dance in each country—which, according to organizer and Program in Dance Senior Lecturer Rebecca Lazier, are “wildly different.” “My hope is to not only expose students to new approaches to dance,” says Lazier, “but also provide the chance for them to become part of larger conversations in dance that span the borders of culture, nation, and discipline.”

On Saturday, February 27, two master classes will be held: “Spinning Around the Heart: Sufi Whirling” with Turkish artist Tan Temel from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m.; and “Contact Improvisation” with Canadian artist Sara Coffin of Mocean Dance from 2:15 to 4:00 p.m., both classes in the Patricia and Ward Hagan ’48 Dance Studio at 185 Nassau Street.

tan temel

Dancer/Choreographer Tan Temel of Turkey

On Sunday, February 28 at 5:00 p.m., an open rehearsal of Lazier’s new work “There Might Be Others” will be presented by the international guest artists, dancers from the New York Live Arts premiere cast, and ten Princeton students who are seniors in the Program in Dance in the Hagan Dance Studio.

On Monday, February 29, a lunchtime panel, “Politics of Artistic Production: Turkey, Poland and Canada,” will be presented from 12:00 to 1:30 p.m. Independent artists from each country will discuss how their work evolved in the social, political, cultural, and economic conditions of their homelands. The panel, moderated by Lazier, will examine how dance is transmitted through education and production in each country and share how choreographers train, produce, and support themselves in shifting landscapes.

Later on Monday, from 4:30 to 6:20 p.m., Polish dance artist Ramona Nagabczynska will present a master class on “The Art of Stealing (Badly)” in the New South Dance Studio. From 7:30 to 9:20 p.m. Canadian dance artist Rhonda Baker of Mocean Dance will present a master class on “Contemporary Technique with Influences from Axis Syllabus and Gaga Technique” in the Hagan Dance Studio.

On Tuesday, March 1, from 4:30 to 6:20 p.m., Polish dance artist Jan Lorys will present a master class on “Partnering and Fighting Monkey Practice” in the Hagan Dance Studio.

sara coffin

Canadian dance artist and co-artistic director of Mocean Dance Sara Coffin

The Platform event will conclude the evening of March 1 with a showing of international guest choreographer work by Tan Temel, Sara Coffin, Pawel Sakawicz, and Ramona Nagabczynska from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. in the James M. Stewart ’32 Theater at 185 Nassau Street.

The panel, open rehearsal and showing are free and open to the public. The master classes are open to Princeton University students to participate and the public to observe. Reservations are not required for any of the events.

Lazier’s new work, “There Might Be Others,” is inspired by Terry Riley’s In C and work builds on the tradition of open scores, where performers compose in real-time based on a predetermined array of content to stage negotiation. Lazier developed the score during residencies in Poland, Turkey, Canada, and New York. A company of professional dancers will premiere the work at New York Live Arts on March 16 through 19. The music for the premiere has been composed by Princeton Department of Music faculty member Dan Trueman in collaboration with Sō Percussion, the Edward T. Cone Ensemble-in-Residence at Princeton, and Mobius Percussion. This past summer the dancers, Lazier, and Trueman joined Sō Percussion’s Summer Institute at Princeton, SōSi, for a residency to create the work. Trueman and Lazier have also been collaborating with Naomi Leonard, Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Princeton, to further their research in group decision-making and collective motion. With post-doctoral researchers Kayhan Özcimder and Biswadip Dey, Leonard acts as a dramaturge to help Lazier, Trueman and the cast of “There Might Be Others” push their investigations of collective composition beyond their initial impulses. Leonard, Özcimder, and Dey have authored a paper, “Investigating Group Behavior in Dance: An Evolutionary Dynamics Approach.”

Lazier taught the score to ten senior certificate dance students who will perform a unique, condensed version of the piece as part of Under Pressure, their senior dance thesis concert in Berlind Theatre at McCarter Theater Center on March 25 and 26. Throughout the rehearsal process Princeton students have had the opportunity to rehearse with the New York cast and the international guests on campus and in New York City.

In addition to the support provided by the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies and the Program in Canadian Studies, the platform event is being funded in part by the Özyegin University in Turkey; Yildiz Technic University in Turkey; The Province of Nova Scotia’s Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage in Canada; Mocean Dance; and as part of the Campus Project. The Campus Project aims at fostering lasting relations between Poland and selected American academic institutions that span theater, music, visual arts, film, literature, architecture and the social sciences. As well as initiating workshops, study visits, concerts, lectures, conferences and exhibitions, the Campus Project supports the initiatives of its partner universities: MIT, Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Columbia, the University of Michigan, University of Illinois at Chicago, Emerson College Boston and L.A., Bard College, Barnard College, the New School New York, Brandeis University, UCLA, USC and CalArts. The Campus Project was launched in 2012 by the Adam Mickiewicz Institute, a national cultural institution aiming to strengthen Polish cultural impact and to enrich international cultural exchange. The Campus Project and all other activities of the Institute are carried out under the flagship brand

For more information on this event and full biographies on each visiting artist, visit the event page.

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