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Dance Perspectives

May 21, 2015

In an idiosyncratic dance piece inspired by Geoffrey Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, individual solos are knit together by a traveling group; another work takes a lighthearted look at contemporary ballet. These pieces are among the Dance Ensemble’s presentation of “Perspectives,” a spring concert taking place on May 28th, 29th and 30th at 8:00pm in the Mandell Theater (33rd & Chestnut Streets). Click to purchase tickets. The Dance Ensemble’s spring concert mines a myriad of personal perspectives in pieces choreographed by seven students as well as Dance faculty member Valerie Ifill, and two guest artists, including 2014 Ellen Forman Award-winner Beau Hancock, and well-known Philadelphia dancer Meredith Rainey, a former principal with the Pennsylvania ballet.

Hancock’s piece, In the Companye of Sundry Folk, takes its name from a line in the Prologue to Geoffrey Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. Mr. Rainey will present two pieces in the concert, including a solo work featuring Drexel senior Cara Slemmer, who Rainey first saw dance three years ago and has been waiting since then to have her dance this piece, entitled Caged. The second piece is a group work, Willy Nilly, danced to a live performance of a piano piece by Bach with accompanist Noah Farber.

The concert also includes the presentation of the 2015 Ellen Forman Award, which honors the memory of Ellen Forman and her contributions to the dance community as a dancer, choreographer and educator. The Award is given annually to a local choreographer to set an original or reconstructed work for the Drexel University Dance Ensemble. This year’s recipient will be dance artist Shaness Kemp, a current company member of Kariamu & Company and Eleone Dance Theatre.