Thursday, December 27, 2012

Interview with OCDP's Michele Oliva and Francesca Dario

In this interview with Oliva Contemporary Dance Project’s Michele Oliva and Francesca Dario, you can read Michele’s answers as Francesca’s thoughts, Francesca’s words as Michele’s sentiments. The two dancers and co-founders of OCDP have found a cadence of speech that jumps from one person to the next while never losing the flow of a sentence. Together for 10 years, since meeting and falling in love while dancing for an Italian version of ‘So You Think You Can Dance,’ the pair buoy one another emotionally and artistically. There is a care evident between them that starts with translating for one another (throughout this interview, throughout their hectic and almost always English-language interactions) and ends in the dance studio, when they dance a phrase together to show the class how their movement should be done. Always, the class is stunned into wondering smiles, wondering how they can physically do what Michele and Francesca do (and with Francesca’s Complexions-influenced leg extensions and Michele’s super-fast isolations, students might not be able to do what they do). But the movement is transcended by the synchronicity and meshing of the two dancers, whose relationship extends beyond the verbal, beyond the mental, and becomes a blending of bodies, a deep understanding that only the two share.

Both from Italy, Michele and Francesca are passionate artists eager to bring their teaching practice and company OCDP, founded in 2004, to audiences' attention here in New York. Michele started dancing on the streets of Italy as a break-dancer; he was initially on a path to a career in soccer, and later had a successful stint as a DJ clubs. Francesca was classically trained from the age of 6. And yet. A fusion. Their newest work, @MozArt, will be performed in the APAP Conference at Peridance Capezio Center January 12 and 13. You can see the two weekly, when they teach their highly technical contemporary movement at Peridance.
The founders of OCDP sat down with me right before the holidays to talk about their upcoming APAP debut, their company, why they dance.
Peridance Capezio Center: How do you describe yourself?
Michele Oliva: As a dancer, dynamic, expressive with a lot of energy and a hard worker. As a choreographer, I try to experience, to grow. To give space to my dreams and work with my sensation, with the music and my heart.
Francesca Dario: I work hard everyday. I push my body and my mind 100%. I’m not lazy. I love this art and I have all of my life to it, but for me the important thing is that dance must make me feel happy and alive. It is not only a good technique or gymnastics. It is love, passion, art. This is how I feel like a dancer.
P.C.C. Describe your signature move
M.O. My movement is a fusion of technique and dynamics. I love to experience something different every day, and give space to my fantasies. I let the music give me a boost and start to create in space.
F.D. My movement is just my feelings. I grew up with a strong discipline and technique, and when I dance I try to push myself with all of these elements. But one of the most important things is what I feel. Not doing just steps to feel the freedom inside of me when I dance or when I create. 
Peridance Capezio Center: The 3 songs at the top of your playlist
Uoon I by Alva Noto & Ryuichi Sakamoto
Vector Lovers by Piano Dust
Apparat by Silizium 
November Skies by Tomas Barfod
Cello -Suite 6 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Laura by Bat for Lashes  
P.C.C. Your company was founded 2004?
F.D. Yes, we started in Italy in 2004 under the name ‘Pantarie’, but it was just for small projects. Now, we are using the new name, Oliva Contemporary Dance Project.
P.C.C. What do you expect APAP to do for OCDP?
M.O. Show my work. I want the people to see my work.
P.C.C. Have they seen this new piece, @MozArt, before?
F.D. No. It’s a new piece for APAP, and it is co-choreographed.
P.C.C. What’s your choreographic process like?
F.D. Sometimes when we have a lot of work to do, we talk before, “O.K. you do this, I do this,” we say.  But sometimes, like for APAP, I prefer that he starts and then we work together.
M.O. When I choreograph, I listen to the music before. I have the fantasy of the dance in my mind.
P.C.C. You wrote on your website that you ‘merge music and dreams’…
M.O. Yes, and once I see it in my mind, then I ask the dancer (to do it.)
P.C.C. And Francesca can do it all, so anything you dream of is possible...
M.O. It’s true, it’s true. She is my inspiration.
P.C.C. How did you two meet?
F.D. We met ten years ago, on a TV show in Italy like ‘So You Think You Can Dance.” I was a student and he was an assistant choreographer. And then…
M.O. Then love.
P.C.C. Did you start working together artistically right away?
F.D. Yes. From then on, we stay always together.
P.C.C. How has your relationship changed?
F.D. I was always a student. Now, I am almost 50 percent when we work together.
M.O. She worked hard, because in the beginning, it was really hard for her.
F.D. In the beginning, I was a ballet dancer, with a total different style (than Michele). 10 years ago Michele’s work was very hard for me. It felt very fast. The musicality was beautiful. For one month after every class I was crying. But if I love something, I can’t stop.
P.C.C. Where is ‘home’ for you?
M.O. Home is Italy. Home is New York.
F.D. Home is where my love is, and where I can dance, but I miss Italy sometimes.
P.C.C. What is something that you hope to do someday?
M.O. I hope that one day I can do a season at the Joyce Theatre with my company, Oliva Contemporary Dance Project. And I hope that my company grows to be able to work 100%, eight hours each day and with shows around the world!
F.D. I hope that I have the chance to work with great choreographers. I hope that our company grows. I hope that we can work with what we have—passion and respect for this beautiful art. 
This interview has been slightly modified (with consent) for continuity and clarity.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Countdown to APAP Begins!

18 days 13ish hours and who knows how many minutes! APAP is on the way!

You absolutely can't miss our line up, to be performed at the Salvatore Capezio Theater at Peridance
January 12 & 13, 2013

Watch a preview of the performance here

Pas de Xia | Xia Hua
ACB Dance | Alison Cook Beatty
Bennyroyce Dance Productions | Bennyroyce Royon
Buglisi Dance Theatre | Jacqulyn Buglisi
Kellie Hodges & Dancers | Kellie Hodges
BARE Dance Company | Mike Esperanza
The TOC Project | Lara Tinari
Derek Mitchell Dance | Derek Mitchell
Mystic Ballet | Goran Subotic
Whim W'Him | Olivier Wevers
Peridance Contemporary Dance Company | Igal Perry
R.E.D. | Rhapsody James
Houston Metropolitan Dance Company | Marlana Doyle
Xhale Dance Company | Michael Susten
Nicholas Andre Dance | Nick Ross
Nai Ni Chen Dance Company | Nai Ni Chen
Korhan Basaran and Artists | Korhan Basaran
Mystic Ballet | Goran Subotic
Oliva Contemporary Dance Project | Michele Oliva
NatalieInMotion | Natalie Deryn Johnson
Artists in Motion | Shameka Blake

Spread out over two days and 4 performances, these artists are 'can't miss'! 

For information on how to purchase tickets, and how to make the most of your APAP experience (an event that upends New York for a full weekend) go to our website.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

An Interview with Yesid Lopez, PCDC Company Member

Here is an interview with Yesid Lopez, who proves to be quite the wordsmith. Read his beautiful thoughts about dancing, get to know the ballet/ salsa/ Tai Chi/ hip hop dancer/ choreographer.

And if you don't know what to get Yesid for Christmas this year, this might help (hint: the words "chocolate" and "pound cake" appear more than once in this interview).

Photo by Danielle Rutherford


Yesid Lopez is originally from Colombia where he began his dance training in ballet. He received a scholarship from The School at Jacob´s Pillow in the jazz program in 2004 and 2006. Yesid has performed in Colombia, UK, Cuba, USA as a dancer and choreographer in latin, jazz and contemporary ballet styles and South Korea as a choreographer-featured dancer with Hanwha Resort in Sokcho City. In 2006, Yesid moved to New York where he received a full scholarship from STEPS on Broadway and was selected to be a member of the Steps Repertory Ensemble 2006-2008. As a choreographer Yesid has performed in different venues in the New York City Area and has received reviews in publications like Attitude The Dancers' Magazine, Ballet-Dance Magazine, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin and Dance Spirit. He has danced with Ballet Hispanico, works as a Ballroom Instructor and choreographer at Dance Times Square and DeMa Dance Company as a Co-Artistic Director and resident choreographer. This is Yesid first season with Peridance Contemporary Dance Company.

Peridance Capezio Center A list of your favorite things (as many things as you can think of!)
Yesid Lopez Dance, mixed martial arts, movies, video games, gadgets, editing, choreographing, hugging, writing (wrote a book to someone very special), music, eating (especially chocolate chip pound cake), traveling... Dreaming

P.C.C. What is your first memory of performing?
Y.L. I was running across an Elementary School patio wearing a mask and a cape. I think I was 6 years old.

P.C.C. What is your favorite snack?
Y.L. Chocolate chip pound cake

P.C.C. What song is 'most played' on your ipod?
Y.L. The 4 seasons of Vivaldi I Allegro Non Molto (Winter).

P.C.C. Where do you go/what do you do in New York when you have a day off?

Y.L. I usually don't have a lot of time off. I am always doing some work. If I get some time off during the week, I would go for a walk to Central Park in the fall or eat some Colombian food in Queens. Maybe Rockaway Park Beach or a Latin concert at Jones Beach in the summer.

P.C.C. Do you have any favorite quotes/ words that you live by?
Y.L. "The brave one is not the one who doesn't have fear but the one who knows how to confront it"

P.C.C. What is your favorite thing about Peridance Contemporary Dance Company?
Y.L. Its soul. Full of the senses of all those relentless explorers of the unknown but sublime. Full of the beauty of limbs and sweat climbing through notes and unforgettable sounds with many hearts in one beat...

P.C.C. Do you have any experiences of the Nutcracker that you'd like to share?
Y.L. My first Nutcracker as a choreographer. With the Hostos Symphony Orchestra on stage at the Hostos Community Center in the Bronx, 2007. You can watch some of the dances at

P.C.C. What's your favorite Nutcracker moment?
Y.L. The Waltz of the Flowers. It takes me back to one of the most beautiful moments in my life.

And on that vague and alluring note, this interview will end. But see Yesid and the company perform in our upcoming PCDC season! This March! More details on our website.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Your choreography on a NY Stage! Apply today!

Apply to the Student Showcase!

Presented at the Salvatore Capezio Theater at Peridance, the bi-yearly Faculty and Student Showcases demonstrate the artistry and talent of Peridance Capezio Center's faculty and students, within a vast array of choreographic styles. From Ballet and Contemporary movement to African, Salsa and Hip-Hop! These performances are a major highlight at Peridance, known for their exciting, diverse, and high-caliber quality.

Submissions deadline for the February Showcases is December 15th.

Peridance Student Showcase
Sunday, February 10th, 2013 at 6:00pm

Visit our website for more information

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Did you read Dance Informa this month?

Check out Dance Informa's recently published article, the first publication to highlight Peridance Capezio Center's 30th anniversary in 2013!

We can't wait to share all of our 30th anniversary celebration news with you. Until then, read this article by dancer/performer/writer/biomechanist Leigh Schanfein.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Dance in Madrid - Baila en Madrid

For our spanish speaking dancers!
Centenares de bailarines de más de una veintena de nacionalidades se congregarán esta Navidad en Madrid con motivo del taller World Dance Movement Spain, una iniciativa que pretende conectar distintas culturas a través de la danza y conceder ayudas para la formación artística.
Este evento, que tiene como antecede un taller similar en la ciudad italiana de Puglia, ha comenzado hoy en el Conservatorio Superior de Danza María de Ávila de Madrid las audiciones para conceder a 10 bailarines españoles una ayuda económica para la matrícula del taller.
Del 29 de diciembre al 6 de enero, la programación de World Dance Movement Spain contará con talleres impartidos por coreógrafos de "prestigio internacional" que, una vez finalizado el evento, otorgarán becas a los mejores bailarines del evento.
La cuantía de estas ayudas asciende a 70.000 dólares (unos 54.000 euros) y están destinadas a la formación artística en escuelas como "Complexions Contemporary Ballet" "Peridance Capezio Center" o el "Broadway Dance Center", ubicadas en Nueva York.

¡y mas!

Marioneta Digital

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The Nutcracker: a Contemporary Look

For the 3rd year, Igal Perry's "The Nutcracker: a Contemporary Look" will be performed at our Salvatore Capezio Theater!

Rehearsals fill our studios, from LaJon Dantzler's hip hop choreography to the stunning work by Igal Perry on the Peridance Contemporary Dance Company.

This contemporary Nutcracker, conceived and choreographed by Artistic Director Igal Perry, pushes the boundaries of the holiday favorite audiences know and love. The Nutcracker is set to excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s original score, with an eclectic range of dance styles, live musical accompaniment and stunning visual effects, to create an intriguing new perspective on this classic, that is sure to delight audiences of all ages. 

Tickets are on sale, and going fast! Purchase yours online

Friday, November 16, 2012

PCDC's Nikki Holck!

Nikki Holck was born in Honolulu, Hawaii where she received her initial dance training.  She continued her studies on scholarship at the North Carolina School of the Arts.  Nikki graduated from Canada’s National Ballet School, where she also completed the Post Secondary Program.  Upon graduation, Nikki joined the National Ballet of Canada under the direction of Karen Kain.  Nikki has had the opportunity to perform a wide range of classical and contemporary choreography, including works by Igal Perry, William Forsythe, Jiri Kylian, James Kudelka, and Korhan Basaran.

 photo by Kokyat


Peridance Capezio Center What did you do over the summer?
Nikki Holck I performed and danced in NY.  Went to the beach, took long bike rides, enjoyed time with friends. Went home to Hawaii, enjoyed the sun and the long days.  

P.C.C What is your first memory of performing?

N.H. Being onstage with my dance studio in Hawaii and performing a dance inspired by Cat in the Hat in an orange unitard and white tail.  

P.C.C What is your favorite snack?

N.H. Kashi cereal and almond milk.

P.C.C What songs are 'most played' on your ipod?


"Picturesof You" by The Cure
"Pitseleh" by Elliott Smith
"Halfa Person" by The Smiths

P.C.C What do you do in New York when you have a day off?

N.H. Days off are rare, but when I get a chance I like to sit by the Hudson River while I write and drink coffee.  

P.C.C Do you have any favorite quotes/ words that you live by?


If the heart had a thought it would stop -clarice lispector

Things were somehow so good that they were in danger of becoming very bad because what is fully mature is very close to rotting -Clarice Lispector

What might have been and what has been
Point to one end, which is always present
- TS Eliot

P.C.C your favorite things

N.H. my journal, good wine, dancing in the rain, the beach at night, family, coffee, friends, the unknown, the tide, the ocean, horizon, challenges, music, thunderstorms, imperfections, art 

P.C.C What is your favorite thing about Peridance Contemporary Dance Company? 

N.H. Our tight knit group and the opportunity to be so intimately involved in the creative process on a daily basis.  A nurturing environment that helps foster and develop young artists.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

PCDC highlighted on Union Square's Blog!

As we count down the days and each moment brings us closer to our Benefit and Auction Event on Saturday night, we can't hold back from sharing with you each development that will make this event even more extravagant and exciting!

New auction items come in every day.
Tables and drinks are starting to be delivered.
Rehearsals fill our studios as PCDC and the Peridance Youth Ensemble practice excerpts from classic works and try out new choreography as well.

And....Union Square's blog has started promoting the event as well! It's going to be an extravanganza in the Union Square community!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Meet Noelle Kayser!


Noelle Kayser began her intensive dance training at the Atlanta Ballet’s Pre-Professional Division under the direction of Sharon Story. During her time at the Atlanta Ballet, she had the privilege of performing alongside the company in works by Lauri Stallings and Artistic Director John McFall. Noelle also performed site-specific works with Lauri Stallings’ Glo. Upon graduation, Noelle spent a year at SUNY Purchase, after which she moved to Chicago to become a Scholarship Student with the Lou Conte Dance Studio at Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. As a scholarship student, Noelle participated in workshops by Victor Quijada, Sammar Haddad King, Terri Marling, and Taryn Kaschock Russell. Noelle joined Luna Negra Dancer Theater as an apprentice under the direction of Gustavo Ramirez Sansano in the fall of 2011. Since, she has performed Sansano’s work alongside the company both nationally and internationally. This is her first year with PCDC.


Peridance Capezio Center What did you do over the summer?
Noelle Kayser Over the summer I participated in The Movement Invention Project and continued rehearsals with Luna Negra Dance Theater. Apart from dancing, I visited my family and friends in Atlanta.

P.C.C What is your first memory of performing?
N.K. It was a recital at Decatur City Dance back in Georgia. I performed a jazz dance to a track from the movie Moulin Rouge. I was very excited about my bejeweled crop top.

P.C.C What is your favorite snack?

N.K. Starfruit. It is the mother of all froyo only found in Chicago. I know the employees of Starfruit by name in two different locations. I'm a regular.

P.C.C What songs are 'most played' on your ipod? 
"What's My Name" ft. Drake by Rihanna
"Roman Holiday" by Nicki Minaj
"Do It Like A Dude" by Jessie J.

P.C.C Where do you go/what do you do in New York when you have a day off? 
N.K. I've never lived in NYC before, so I don't know yet :)

P.C.C Do you have any favorite quotes/ words that you live by?
N.K. "Humanity does not ask us to be happy. It merely asks us to be brilliant on its behalf." - Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card.

P.C.C Your favorite things are...
N.K. Friends. Family. Collard greens.

P.C.C What do you like best about Peridance Contemporary Dance Company so far? 
N.K. The positivity I feel from the other dancers and the artistic staff.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Meet Christopher Bloom!

Christopher Bloom is from Middletown, VA where he started training at the Vostrikov's Academy of Ballet at the age of 15. Christopher trained as a scholarship student at the Ballet and Contemporary Dance Programs in the School at Jacob's Pillow under Anna-Marie Holmes and Milton Myers. He holds a B.F.A. from The Ailey/Fordham BFA Dance program where he had the opportunity to perform works by Sidra Bell, Francesca Harper, Camille A. Brown, Jennifer Muller, Paul Taylor and Alvin Ailey. He has performed professionally with 360º Dance Company, Thang Dao Dance Company, VonUssar DanceWorks, Parsons Dance and with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. This is his first season with PCDC.

See some amazing photos/videos/other stuff on his website



Peridance Capezio Center What did you do over the summer?

Christopher Bloom It was my first summer after college so after moving to my new apartment I worked with several companies. I was privileged to go to Steamboat Springs CO with the Thang Dao Dance Company to perform in the annual Perry-Mansfield New Works Festival. After that I joined VON USSAR danceworks for their Summer Stage performances.

P.C.C What is your first memory of performing?

C.B. My first performance was with my old band, According to Hoyle, when I was 12 years old. We played NYE 2002 for our debut. I was the youngest person in the band and was so nervous to get onstage with them that I threw up before the show. As it turned out we were a huge local hit and we sold out of all the copies of our demo.

P.C.C What is your favorite snack?

C.B. Potato chips

P.C.C What songs are 'most played' on your ipod?

C.B. I actually don't use an iPod but I think it would probably be "Boy With A Coin" by Iron and Wine, "Dust Bowl Dance" by Mumford and Sons, "Skinny Love" by Bon Iver and "Blacken the Cursed Sun" by Lamb of God (metal gets me pumped).

P.C.C Where do you go/what do you do in New York when you have a day off?

C.B. Usually I go to the gym and then go to a new NYC park. I love walking around and seeing what there is to see. It is also nice to see a blade of grass from time to time. Lately I have been so busy that my rare days off are spent doing laundry, grocery shopping and writing all the emails that I had been putting off for lack of time.

P.C.C Do you have any favorite quotes/ words that you live by?

C.B. Personal motto
"The only thing in the world that matters is your life and what you do with it"
"Citius, Altius, Fortius".


"All evil is ignorance" Plato
"Man is the measure of all things" Plato
"A man's worth is no greater than his ambitions" Marcus Aurelius
"Love is value" Ayn Rand

P.C.C A list of your favorite things (as many things as you can think of!)

C.B. Steak, Bacon, Peaches, Coffee, Dark Chocolate, Sweet Potatoes, Beer, Dance, History books, reading in general. learning, conversing (intelligently), spending time with my family and girlfriend, working out, the sun, dressing well (when I can manage it), living in NYC, leaving NYC, Returning to NYC,  Music, playing music, playing soccer, Seeing a great dance show, Watching movies and certain TV shows

P.C.C What is your favorite thing about Peridance Contemporary Dance Company?

C.B. There are a lot of reasons that I already am excited about the company. The first is Igal. I have known him for a couple of years now and I think it will be fantastic to work with/for him. Secondly, I am excited to be in the Peridance space every day. The facility is wonderful and has so much openness and energy. The thing I am most excited about is the variety of work we will have in our rep. There aren't that many repertory companies our there in comparison to how many companies there are that are based around the work of a single choreographer. The chance to broaden my skills and perform work by men and women like Igal Perry, Ohad Naharin, Enzo Celli and Sidra Bell is hugely exciting for me.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Meet Micah Savin!


Micah Savin began training at the age of 17 in Carlsbad, California. He has received training from Muriel Maffre, Maurya Kerr, Augusta Moore, and Edouard Kouzmitch and trained at the Edge Performing Arts Center. He was accepted to California Institute of the Arts, where he refined his dancing to focus primarily on modern, contemporary, and ballet styles. He recently graduated from the Alonzo King Lines Ballet Training Program. Micah has performed works by artists including with Greg Dawson, James Wallace, Laura Bernasconi, Carmen Rozestraten, Amanda Miller, LeeWei Chao, Sunny Chen, and Nathan Trice.


Peridance Capezio Center What did you do over the summer?
Micah Savin I found myself traveling around the USA teaching Ballet. It has been so great to see so many of friends opening successful studios, and pursuing their love of teaching. While traveling, I took a risk and decided to move to New York City. Within a month, I was offered a job with Peridance. I was thrilled!

P.C.C What is your first memory of performing?
M.S I have been a performer my entire life! As a child, I would dress up in my sister's tutus and become the infamous Miss Michelle. Miss Michelle happened to be my first dance teacher.

P.C.C What is your favorite snack?
M.S Cider donuts dipped in tapioca pudding! It is absolute heaven.

P.C.C What songs are 'most played' on your ipod?
M.S "Blue Bicycle" by Hauschka, "You Oughta Know"by Alanis Morissette, "Our Song"by The XX.

P.C.C Where do you go/what do you do in New York when you have a day off?
M.S This past Summer, I found myself doing yoga in Central or Prospect Park. I feel like I can escape the world there. I am an admirer of rooftop adventures. On the colder days there isn't a better thing in the world than a nice bowl of Ramen.

P.C.C Do you have any favorite quotes/ words that you live by?
M.S “Live! Live the wonderful life that is in you! Let nothing be lost upon you. Be always searching for new sensations. Be afraid of nothing.” - The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

“Prejudices, it is well known, are most difficult to eradicate from the heart whose soil has never been loosened or fertilised by education: they grow there, firm as weeds among stones.” Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” -Ernest Hemingway

P.C.C A list of your favorite things (as many things as you can think of)!
M.S Foggy mornings. Books in bed. Saturday morning cartoons. Funky friends. Cup of JOE. Anime. My Mom. John Varvatos. Fattening pastries. Iron&Wine. Pregnant women in Lululemon. Silent cackles. Smiling.

P.C.C What is your favorite thing about Peridance Contemporary Dance Company?
M.S Every morning I am so excited to work with such a patient and passionate man as Igal. He inspires me to push myself, while at the same time acknowledge the talent and beauty I possess. Coming into this company I admire the unique artistic voices of the company members. Igal's perception of beauty is one of his strongest attributes as an Artistic Director.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Meet the Dancers of PCDC!

Today is the first day of rehearsals for Peridance Contemporary Dance Company's
2012-2013 Season!

Meet the dancers, including 8 new faces! 

Christopher Bloom         
Joanna DeFelice            
Stefan Dolbashian          
Nikki Holck                    
Noelle Kayser                 
Youngsil Kim                  
Leigh Lijoi
Yesid Lopez
Madison McPhail
Justin Mock
Midori Nonaka
Micah Savin
Zach Thomas
Eila Valls

You can read their bios on the PCDC website!

The Periblog will post weekly interviews with the dancers, highlighting one performer each week. Read these posts to find out whose favorite food is bacon, and whose favorite songs are "Blue Bicycle" by Hauschka, "You Oughta Know" by Alanis Morissette and "Our Song" by The XX.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Today is a Procrastinator's BEST DAY EVER!

The deadline to apply to be a part of Peridance's APAP Showcases on January 12th and 13th, 2013 has been extended to October 15th, 2012!

Following its successful 2012 APAP debut, Peridance Capezio Center is proud to once again present choreographers for the 2013 Association of Performing Arts Presenters (APAP) Conference in the renowned Salvatore Capezio Theater. Choreographers interested in being presented by Peridance will need to complete an online Application Form (Application Deadline - October 15th, 2012. $50 application fee).

Performances are during the weekend of January 11th-13th, 2013.

Friday, September 28, 2012

You can review Peridance Contemporary Dance Company too!

Did you know that your thoughts about a dance performance can be published online and reach hundreds of dancers instantly? The Dance Enthusiast is a blog with an ever-expanding audience reach. Here, professional writers post reviews on performances throughout NY, big and small. For those they don't cover, anyone can send in a review of a show they saw as well.

Last night, the Dance Enthusiast celebrated their 5th birthday with a gathering of supporters, writers and dancers. The blog employs 8 dance critics who write for the site officially. There is also an amazing, diplomatic 'audience reviews' section publishes the everyday dance viewer with as much respect and confidence as they do their staff.

The event was small, with maybe 50 people in attendance, but it felt like an important moment in the Dance Enthusiast's career. A moment when they urged the dance audience to join in the conversation as a dance critic. Writer and dance critic Eva Yaa Asantewaa, of InfiniteBody, was there. Dancers, and husbands of dancers, and friends of people who kind of knew dance but knew they loved the idea of dance, were there. Conversations between the dance history buffs and dance novices have the potential to be lively and illuminating, and this blog presents a public forum to watch the discussions develop.

Congratulations to The Dance Enthusiast for this wonderful anniversary! Peridance Contemporary Dance Company can't wait to be reviewed by one of your amazing staff in the future. Or, in lieu of an official review, we just might write one for your blog ourselves.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Interview with Enzo Celli of Celli Contemporary Ballet

Enzo Celli believes in the group – the swooping form of a flock of birds as they navigate through thick air. He also believes in the individual; a dancer should be recognized as a person first, a part of the company second. In this, Celli is complicated. In his deep love for dance, Celli is clear.

During my interview with dancer and choreographer for the Italy-based company, Celli Contemporary Ballet, Enzo Celli found constant reprieve from a list of questions in the encouraging smile of his wife, Elisabetta Minutoli. Minutoli is one of 13 dancers in Celli’s company. When Celli teaches class, she is at the front performing the movement (it never could be marking on her endlessly languid form). Below is an interview with Enzo Celli, with a few remarks from Minutoli.

This interview has been edited, with permission, to reflect Celli’s meaning. Editing was done to a minimal extent, and in some instances I have kept his wording because it is simply more poetic than what is grammatically correct.


Peridance Capezio Center We can start off with meme….

Enzo Celli Meme arrived from the concept of a man who studied social science, Richard Dawkins. He said that meme is for the social science like the gene is for the biologic science. For instance, how Italian people have white skin and everybody is not so high, how Italians talk and move with their hands and have a talent for music. Dawkins calls this meme.
(Read a full description here)

So I use this name, meme, because one of the most important issues for me is to translate the dancer as an artist onto the stage. For me, every dancer is a soloist onstage. And my mission is to show this to the audience. It is important that you recognize everyone as an individual, and after that, you recognize them as a dancer. In this way it is important that I don’t change their personality for the stage.

In this way I also put meme into my class. When I say in the class “I don’t like that everything is so clean,” it is because I believe details in the movement are up to the dancers to decide. I give you the gene of the choreography. I give you the dynamic. But I like detail that is born from each individual dancer.

P.C.C. Is it different to dance with your wife? Easier to create a relationship onstage with someone that you know so well?

E.C. Dancing with my wife totally changed my career. I’m very lucky because my wife is probably the artist that I respect most in the world. I have a good respect for her personality, her story, her capacities. Working with her… it is the greatest stimulus that I have in my life. And this stimulus totally changed my career.

P.C.C. What was your career like before meeting (your wife) Elisabetta?

E.C. I didn’t believe in myself like she believes in me. Meeting her, four years ago, improved my vision of dance. Because she knows me, she probably knows me better than I do, so I can’t bluff with her. In this way, I have to improve myself as a teacher and as a choreographer every day.

By the way, that’s very difficult too, because we live together. It’s not so easy…

Elisabetta Minutoli: No, it’s not so easy

(don’t worry, they’re smiling, a connection and mutual understanding passing between the coupe)

E.C. She’s my wife in the studio and out of the studio. When we’re in the studio I have to remember that she is an artist and I have to respect this.

P.C.C. Do you work together or is it ‘Enzo: the Choreographer”?

E.C. I am the choreographer, she is the dancer.

P.C.C. (To Minutoli) Do you want to choreograph?

E.M. I’m trying to do something, but I try in another situation, not with him. I try to create something that is all mine. Of course I am influenced by him, but that’s okay because he is a master (of his craft).

P.C.C. (To Enzo) How do you choreograph?
E.C. It depends. When I perform, it is total improvisation. I put myself in very difficult situations to improvise. But the dancers don’t improvise.

P.C.C. Why not?

E.C. It’s an issue of meme. When we are creating the movement we are improvising and after, we translate this improvisation into choreography.

We have another process, too. When we are in the studio we create the choreography, film it, and we have an archive of movement. I tell the dancers to choose from that archive what they think is best for them.

It starts out as an experiment. I think that it is the greatest strength of the company. The dancer is an artist. I like when I see that they create another movement from my movement. It is amazing. It is a constant growth.

P.C.C. Whom do you admire most as a choreographer?

E.C. Nathan Trice. Absolutely. He is a poet. I believe the most important thing for the new generation (of contemporary choreographers) is to create work for the same people that go to the cinema to watch a movie. I believe it’s important for contemporary dancers to open our vision of dance and try to work for the common people. I believe that Nathan trice does this work.

P.C.C. When I interviewed Nathan Trice for the Periblog last week, I asked him if it was enough for the choreographer to like a dance that they make, even if the audience dislikes it. He said that this was selfish. How do you feel?

I believe that when you go on stage you have the responsibility of that stage. An artist has to be honest. This is the most important thing. Last week, my wife and I performed a duet and I started to cry during this duet, because it was (an) honest (reaction). So in that situation, it seems (as though) I make the work for me. But it’s not true, because I’m living in that moment and the audience is living in that moment with me.

P.C.C. If you had 1 million dollars, what would you do with it?  

E.C. I would love to give students the opportunity to learn dance for free. I would love to give job opportunities. Economic opportunities. A lot of young dancers stop dancing because they have to work. I believe that it is not good for New York, for the world, if a dancer has to lose their talent because they have to do another job.

P.C.C. What are three things that you think are beautiful.

My wife.
The Holy Spirit.