Contemporary Dance Theatre performs its most artistic concerts of the year

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BYU Contemporary Dance Theatre will showcase their most artistic performance of the year in their on-campus concerts. (Samantha Little)
BYU Contemporary Dance Theatre will showcase its most artistic performances of the year in four on-campus concerts. (Samantha Little)

BYU Contemporary Dance Theatre (CDT) will perform its most artistic performances of the year in four on-campus concerts at the Pardoe Theatre. Nathan Balser, Artistic Director of CDT, described these performances as the group’s “most art-minded” concerts of the year.

Michelle Leavitt, a first-year performer with CDT said the show focuses a lot on artistry and showcases the dances as art.

“In our shows that we perform other places, it’s more about the entertainment, and this is a lot about the art, causing people to reflect and see what they can take from each piece,”Leavitt said.

The shows on campus this week will include six new choreographic works, according to Balser. This will feature a new piece called “Forming In,” which the group learned one-on-one with guest choreographer, Peter Chu. Balser said the group was lucky to have the opportunity to work with Chu, a renowned artistic director in Europe. Leavitt said Chu’s new piece is one of her favorite dances from the concerts this week.

“It’s really innovative in the way that he has the dancers moving and partnering,” Leavitt said. “It’s very touching and makes you think.”

CDT will also perform another new piece entitled, “The Work of Us.”  The performers learned this dance with guest choreographer Courtney Mazeika, a professional dancer from the San Francisco Conservatory of Dance. Adam Schraedel, one of the dancers who performs Mazeika’s piece, said the dance is about how we work with others around us.

“The piece is about interactions with each other, relationships with each other and how we’re influenced by those around us how we influence them, and how we deal with that,” Schraedel said.

CDT will be performing on tour in California and Nevada in March. The group also plans to film one of its pieces in the spring and put it online.  Balser said that this will help CDT in one of its goals to, “broadcast what we do so it’s more visible to the world.”

Balser hopes the concerts this week will be an invitation to the audience to reflect and feel inspired to create something new or think about something in a new way.

“I hope people feel like they’ve been uplifted and that it causes them to reflect about life, relationships, people they know, and how they see beauty in the world,” Shraedel said.

The four performances of “BYU Contemporary Dance Theatre in Concert” will be at the Pardoe Theatre in the HFAC on Feb 11 – 13 at 7:30 pm with a matinee showing on Feb 13 at 2 p.m.  Tickets to the concerts are available at arts.byu.edu or at the HFAC Ticket Office.

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