Photos by Johanna Austin
Drexel Dance Ensemble and FreshDance join forces for our first ever dance on video production. The film presents dance works that are inventive, explorative, and passionate. Choreographers for Drexel Dance Ensemble include Albert Quesada, Ali Willingham, Ellen Forman Award winner Gabrielle Revlock, and dance faculty Miriam Giguere and Sandra Parks. FreshDance performs works by dance faculty Valerie Ifill and Caroline O’Brien, and alumni Alexandra Lodise and Kathryn Schweingruber. Choreographers have collaborated with internationally recognized video artists Jorge Cousineau, Tori Lawrence, and Brittany Fishel to create this exciting digital event. Choreography for the Camera!
Film Coming Spring 2021!
Inside the Process
What our artists and students have to say:
“The process is not to go into the rehearsals, ask them to execute exactly what I have imagined. The process is about shaping the work with them, and it is always so exciting to see how the students approach the ideas. I might be biased, but I think the dancers from Drexel Dance are not only lovely dancers and technicians, but they are also sincere human beings who are empathetic and honest. The process with these dancers always brings out the most honest work, which is completely satisfying.”
– Sandra Parks, Choreographer, Dance Program Director
“It has been an interesting process in terms of gaining insight into other choreographer's approaches and methods. I have enjoyed talking with the three choreographers about their ideas. [For Valerie Ifill’s work,] I have enjoyed working with Val and her students and talking to them about image design and composition as they filmed themselves in their home environments with their phone cameras and a gimbal.”
– Tori Lawrence, Film Artist
“I am learning so much about teamwork from the rehearsal process. Zoom rehearsals have been so challenging and they have really pushed us all as artists to use our space appropriately and to step out of our comfort zone to create something moving in such unprecedented times. This rehearsal process, while different from any that I have experienced before, has been so rewarding for me to see myself and my peers grow as time went on. This process has really brightened my spirits during a time when so much of life is so uncertain.”
– Kara Moran, Dancer
“In many ways this has been a very isolating time so it's especially important to me that we've nonetheless been able to form a close-knit community that is very positive and supportive, and when so many parts of life this year have been cancelled or just postponed, I'm just glad that we're all dancing together in whatever capacity we can.”
– Grace Fisher, Dancer
About the Drexel Dance Ensemble
The Drexel Dance Ensemble is a professional caliber dance company presenting two fully produced concerts each year using the Mandell Theater. Students participating in the 50-member ensemble are given the opportunity to explore their artistry through working with professional choreographers, both faculty and guests artists. Additionally, students are selected to create original works on their peers and develop their emerging choreographic voices. The diversity of choreographic talent promises a show with dimension and unique perspectives on contemporary and classical dance forms. All dance works are created with the support of a staff of theater professionals, including a lighting designer, and costume designers creating original costumes for each piece. Entrance into this company is open to any dancers beyond their freshman year by audition twice yearly.
Our Core Values
We strive to provide a safe environment where students can be imaginative, explorative, challenged, surrounded by pluralistic ideas, and guided to achieve artistic and technical goals. We value hard work, working as a team, and the communal spirit it takes to achieve a fully produced dance performance. This home – and place of artistry – will serve the students. This is a place for dancers to learn, expand, unite, and be.
Our Creative Team
Dance Ensemble & FreshDance Director: Olive Prince
Producer: Megan Tomey
Assistant Directors: Mary Stickney & Caroline O’Brien