COLEctive Collaboration

photo by William Frederking

On the last weekend in January, The Dance COLEctive (TDC), currently in its 14th season, will present a concert at the Ruth Page Center for the Arts entitled, “Meet Me There“.   The performance is comprised of three works:  two world premieres and a returning work by Shirley Mordine.  The concert title comes from the process of converging the works and bringing them together from different directions.

Taking Hold” is a work for eight dancers created by Artistic Director, Margi Cole which takes a look at the hobby of collecting. It takies a peek in to what and why we hold on to things and/or people and when/why do we let go.   A wide range of questions confront the dancers:  What do we collect?  Why?  How?  Do you share your interest with others?  How does it make you feel?  How would you feel if you suddenly had to part with your collection?  This last question can evoke very different responses.  Cole cites two examples of things she has collected:  Beanie Babies and Fiestaware.  Both are stored away, but one is a fun hobby from her youth and the other carries familial and generational attachments.  The dancers also looks at the collecting or creating of relationships.  After journaling on some of these prompts, the dancers started creating duets and trios at random, then layered the movement by adding relationships.  This was a new way of working for Cole.  She adds, “this is not a finished work”, but will be continually evolving.

IMe” is another world premiere and a collaboration between Cole and Jeff Hancock (Associate Director, Same Planet Different World Dance Theater).  A co-collaboration, or a “co-co” as they like to call it. “I’m loving the co-co!” says Cole.  The partnership provides insightful feedback from two very different backgrounds.  “IMe” explores self-possession, self-promotion and personal reflection in today’s all-access, electronic society.  How do you identify yourself in a public forum (Facebook, Twitter, Match.com) or do you allow the forum to identify you?  While revealing yourself, are you being narcissistic and an exhibitionist or a voyeur?  What are the boundaries?  TDC performed an except at The Other Dance Festival last fall.  After working on it, a smaller, more focused piece has emerged.  For a fun and meaningful twist, the dancers will be wearing t-shirts with their avatars printed on them.

TDC will also be performing a reconstruction of Shirley Mordine’s “Three Women“.  Originally set in 1974, Mordine (founder of the Dance Center at Columbia College and Artistic Director of Mordine & Company Dance Theater) explored the different life stages of women, from childhood to maturity.  Cole, who quickly came back from a knee injury in 2008 to perform at Mordine & Co’s 40th anniversary gala, is dancing Ms. Mordine’s original role.  “I think it’s important to still put myself out there,” says Cole, finding herself at a place of humility.  “The group of dancers I have are lovely, serious and smart.  I’m proud and lucky to be working with them.”

“Meet Me There” – January 28-31, 2010 at 8pm

Ruth Page Center for the Arts

1016 N Dearborn, Chicago

General Admission:  $22

Student & Seniors:  $18

For tickets, go to:  www.dancecolective.com

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