Emory Dance Company presents diverse mix of faculty and guest artist work

Emory Report | Nov. 19, 2019

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The Emory Dance Company’s fall concert includes Dafi Altabeb’s work “It’s Not a Pipe.” Performances are Nov. 21-23 at the Schwartz Center for Performing Arts. Photo by Nini Moshe.

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The Emory Dance Company’s 2019 fall concert features work by Emory faculty members Julio Medina and Lori Teague, as well as guest artists Dafi Altabeb, Jessica Bertram and Kristin O’Neal. Performances will be Nov. 21-23 in the dance studio of the Schwartz Center for Performing Arts.

“The concert represents a wide variety of themes and styles,” says assistant professor and co-director of the Emory Dance Company, Julio Medina. “This year, one exciting element we are bringing to the concert is a white marley floor, which will serve as a blank canvas for each of us to share our choreographic curiosities.”

Guest artists explore emotions and common-ground issues

Dafi Altabeb, a Schwartz artist in residence, crafted a new work for the Emory Dance Company during her semester-long residency. Her creation, titled “It’s Not a Pipe,” references René Magritte’s famous surrealist painting of a pipe. Working collaboratively with her dancers, Dafi aims to “explore the gentle line between the global and the personal, the political and human issues that concern us all.” 

Emory alumna Jessica Bertram investigates the human desire for closure in her new work. The dancers “journaled and drew from their personal experiences of love lost,” says Bertram, who constructed the piece using text, movement and improvisation scores. The result is a series of duets “with moments of frustration and tenderness, oppositional force and support.” 

Guest artist Kristin O’Neal restages a series of solos and duets called “Sweet Suite” on the Emory Dance Company this fall. The work, originally created over the span of a decade “shares a glimpse into the inner life of seven women—where the sweet meets the bittersweet through moments of elation, despair, humor, heartbreak and determination,” says O’Neal. 

Faculty artists blend multiple dance styles

The newest member of the Emory Dance Program faculty, Julio Medina, explores the concept of energy in his new work. Using a blend of contemporary modern dance, hip-hop, house and pedestrian movement, Medina explores “the energy of the room, the presence that each dancer has and how these personalities work together.”

Finally, Emory Dance Program director Lori Teague works with a large cast of thirteen dancers in a new work called “the optimistic body.” Drawing heavily from her observations of the dancers as individuals and a group, Teague investigates “the relationship of optimism with realism.” Guided improvisation scores help Teague develop movement that is full of volume, resiliency and recovery. 

Tickets may be purchased online, at the Arts at Emory box office or by calling 404-727-5050 Monday–Friday, 12–6 p.m.