Monday, February 16, 2015

UNCSA graduating dancers show Pluck

University of North Carolina School of the Arts
dance students perform a work by Kimberly Bartosik.
All photos by Peter Mueller

Students of the 2015 graduating contemporary dance class of University of North Carolina School of the Arts are excitedly preparing to perform next month at New York's Ailey Citigroup Theater-The Joan Weill Center for Dance. UNCSA's annual Pluck Project opens opportunities for students to jump-start careers by forging connections to established choreographers and other professionals in the field. This year, in addition to student-created solos, the culminating presentation features an ensemble piece by noted New York dance artist Kimberly Bartosik.

"The students financed the entire trip themselves through grassroots fundraising to pay for theater rental, transportation and more," Bartosik says, marveling at their ingenuity and commitment. "They're even responsible for rehearsing my piece in my absence--without any faculty oversight. And many of them haven't ever been to New York!"

Developing The Palpable Space in Between with UNCSA students stretched her practice.

"I created the piece when I spent a semester at UNCSA--my alma mater--in fall 2013," she says. "It totally changed my perception about what was possible with young dancers and led to a much deeper exploration of form than I had ever experienced. I experimented with ideas I normally censor from my professional work but which, I felt, had a place here--unison movement, uncomplicated beauty. It was really invigorating, and I'm still learning from it."

The Palpable Space in Between, Bartosik says, connects to her concerns about the violence in our culture.

"These kids were so young that I couldn't ask them to take the same emotional risks that I ask of my professional performers. However, they went far and deep and totally got it."

See The Palpable Space in Between at a free presentation on Monday, March 9, 7pm at Ailey Citigroup Theater-The Joan Weill Center for Dance. Reservations are recommended and can be made by email to Show your support with a tax-deductible donations here.

The Pluck Project Class of 2015

Graham Cole
Javier Colon
David Ferguson
William Fowler
Margaret Jones
Shyanne Ramsey
Bailey Reese
Shelby Ring
Nick Rodriques
Casey Sauls
Kellyn Thornburg

Ailey Citigroup Theater-The Joan Weill Center for Dance
405 West 55th Street (at 9th Avenue), Manhattan

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