I just watched the second weekend of Barn Storm Dance Fest, and last weekend I was able to see Program 1. Barn Storm Dance Fest is a three-weekend dance festival produced by Dance Source Houston– Houston’s dance service organization. Dance Source Houston has exploded in the last couple of years. They have taken over The Barn (formerly Barnevelder Performing Arts Complex), and worked to raise the funding to subsidize rentals for artists and arts organizations; They have started an Artist in Residency Program (AIR) for three artists each year to use the space to develop new work; They now offer Micro Grants for production costs (Frame Dance is eternally thankful!); and they produce the Barn Storm Dance Festival to showcase dance from Houston and other Texas cities.
What strikes me (as someone who is not participating as an artist in this festival) is the importance for dancers and choreographers to convene. It has been special to watch pieces from veteran and emerging choreographers on the same show. This is very valuable for the health of dance in our city. The shows have been running flawlessly, and lit beautifully. I imagine you’ll have your favorites, some that don’t touch you as poignantly, and others that will push you a little as a viewer. That’s the beauty of the festival format– you get to see so much. I walk away from the first two programs proud of our city and all of the dance in it! Thank you, Dance Source Houston, for bringing these artists together and producing such an extensive festival, and thank you to the artists for making dance. You have two more chances to see it this weekend and a full weekend for Program 3. Tickets and info here.
The Framed in Five shows on Friday and Saturday were fantastic! All the hard work from the dancers really payed off, it was clear to anyone who saw the shows. It showcased work from the company as well as those participating in the Multi-Gen classes, new music, choreography and costume design. Sign up for our summer workshops to get ready for next year! And in the fall we will have two Little Framers age groups and the Multi-Gen Classes.
I would like to take some time to really acknowledge Ashley Horn for her impactful Frame Dance collaborations over the past five years (and more to come!) She has been my most consistent collaborator, and has had an indelible stamp on Frame Dance aesthetics. She is so talented and unwaveringly creative. She understands my interest in color, shape, and style. This performance of Framed in Five is requiring her to make 34 (or something) costumes! Here are a few photos of the costumes in progress…
About Frame Dance’s next performance: Bayou Greenway Day on April 4
We hope you will join us at an exciting new community event from the Houston Parks Board: Bayou Greenway Day 2015 presented by Noble Energy! This free, day-long event will offer families the chance to walk, bike, run, stroll, play and paddle between park sites along Brays Bayou Greenway in the East End.
Event “hubs” in Mason Park, Spurlock Park, Gragg Park and Fonde Park – and the Brays Bayou Greenway trail in-between – will host fun activities for all ages. You will be able to start at any of these locations, enjoying activities and exploring the trails that connect the parks.
Activities will include 5K fun run/walk; bike rides, rentals and decorating; Zumba classes and dance performances; an interactive campsite; kayaking (for a small fee); giveaways and more!
Frame Dance will perform a work that travels along the bayou with elaborate time-lapse costumes by Ashley Horn.
Come experience the transformation happening along Houston’s bayous as part of Bayou Greenways 2020! Visit www.bayougreenwayday.org for additional information and an event map. Most activities free; April 4, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Framers perform at noon starting at Mason Park.
Bayou Greenway Day 2015 is a project of the Houston Parks Board in collaboration with the Mayor’s Office of Special Events, the Houston Parks and Recreation Department, and the office of Council Member Robert Gallegos.
I guarantee that you will be able to see these things translated to the stage if you stare at these diagrams hard enough.
We are in the midst of rehearsing for Framed in Five which will be May 1 and 2. Tickets are already on sale, so get them now! I thought I’d share a few sketches of what we’ve been working on. I wonder if you can translate my crazy notation!
Frame Dance casts a vision for the next five years with steel string guitars, percussion toys, and sophisticated dancing
Houston, TX—February 5, 2015. Framed in Five is a celebration of Frame Dance Productions and the vibrant “Framer” community they have grown over their first five years. The program will feature new dance and live music ranging from surprising and intricate percussion, to a curious and whimsical guitar duo, to an emotive string quartet that “depicts the wind and rainfall during a rain shower.”
Framed in Five runs May 1 & 2, 2015 in the Margaret Alkek Williams Dance Lab at The Houston Ballet Center for Dance. This vibrant program will feature winners from the Frame Dance Music Competition: composers Joel Love (Austin), Gabriel José Bolaños (California), and Robert Honstein (Boston). Baylor Percussion Ensemble, a steel string guitar duo, and string quartet will perform with Frame Dance in three new pieces.
Frame Dance’s newest programs: Little Framers Children’s Ensemble and the Multi-Generation Ensemble will join the cast for a special premiere, Lightscape. Lydia Hance has choreographed a dance that integrates the professional dance company, the children’s ensemble, and adults of different ages from around Houston revealing the depth of age, the vitality of youth, and the resonance of vulnerability.
Artistic Director Lydia Hance will reveal the vision for Frame Dance in the next five years with an exciting new video.
Margaret Alkek Williams Dance Lab
Houston Ballet Center for Dance
601 Preston St.
Houston TX 77002
May 1 at 7:30pm, May 2 at 2pm and 7:30pm
On street, lot, and garage parking
Cost: $11-22, family rates and group ticketing available
About the Choreographer and Composers: Dubbed Houston’s “queen of curious locations,” Lydia Hance is the Executive and Artistic Director of Frame Dance Productions. She has been named an Emerging Leader by Dance/USA and has been leading Frame Dance in performances from the Galveston pier onto the METRO light rail, into the backs of U Haul trucks, and into museums, stages, and warehouses throughout Texas for the past five years. A champion of new music composers, her work deepens interdisciplinary collaborations and investigates the placement of dance in our lives. She is the former Education Director of Hope Stone Inc., and has recently launched the children’s ensemble Little Framers. She is a choreographer, curator, filmmaker, educator, and dance writer originally from the California Bay Area. She holds degrees in Dance Performance and English Literature from SMU and trained at the Taylor School, Graham School, Tisch School of the Arts, Limon Institute and SMU.
Gabriel José Bolaños Chamorro is a Nicaraguan-American composer and guitarist. He is pursuing his PhD at UC Davis. He received a bachelor’s
degree from Columbia University in 2007 where he studied composition with Fabien Lévy and Sebastian Currier, and orchestration with Tristan Murail. He has also worked as a freelance musician in New Haven, CT, and was a professor of theory, analysis and guitar at the Casa de los 3mundos music academy in Granada, Nicaragua. His work draws upon a variety of interests including linguistics, spectralism and the physical properties of sound, psychoacoustics and geology.
Joel Love’s music has been performed by The Aura Contemporary Music Ensemble, The California State University Los Angeles Wind Ensemble, Da Camera of Houston’s Young Artists, The Boston New Music Initiative, the Ohio State University Wind Symphony, the Texas A&M University Symphonic Winds, the Lamar University A Capella Choir and Wind Ensemble, the University of Texas Wind Symphony, and exhibited at many art galleries throughout the United States. Joel’s first work for wind ensemble, Aurora Borealis, was recently selected for performance at the 2013 SCI National Conference. In a recent review of 2013 SXSW events, Capital Public Radio’s Nick Brunner commented that “The Peace of Wild Things” was a “gorgeous piece of music, wafting along into the ether.” He recently finished is doctorate from the University of Texas Austin.
Celebrated for his “roiling, insistent orchestral figuration” (New York Times) and “glittery, percussive pieces” (Toronto Globe and Mail), composer Robert Honstein is a composer of orchestral, chamber, and vocal music. Robert has received awards, grants and recognition from Carnegie Hall, Copland House, the New York Youth Symphony, ASCAP, SCI, the Minnesota Orchestra Composer Institute, the Albany Symphony Orchestra, the Young New Yorkers Chorus, the Lake George Music Festival, the Boston New Music Initiative, the Ithaca College Chamber Orchestra, and New Music USA. Robert co-founded Fast Forward Austin, an annual marathon new music festival in Austin, TX. Described as “the first ever classical music event in Austin to make its own beer koozies” (Austin American Statesmen), Fast Forward Austin features local and national, cutting-edge artists in a “welcomingly relaxed venue… [that] tapped into what is so great about the Austin vibe: a community of people who are artistically curious, non- doctrinaire, and unpretentious” (NewMusicBox).
For links we like we thought we’d throw back to some Frame Dance Tiny Dances from our show called The Black Space. We made a series of these tiny silent films that were made to be viewed on a smart phone. Stay tuned for the second one next Friday.