One of the wonderful perks of running and writing for LA Dance Chronicle (LADC) is that each and every day I learn something new about the art form that I have been active in for over 50 years. As an example, I had no idea that there was a Lake Tahoe Dance Collective (LTDC). Nor was I aware that for the past several years they have been producing a summer dance festival. It is also exciting to be able to share this knowledge with readers of LADC; readers who are also interested in learning more about Dance.
For three days, July 22-24, 2020, LTDC will present the eighth annual Lake Tahoe Dance Festival, only this year it will take place online due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “The Lake Tahoe Dance Collective’s mission is to promote classical, modern and contemporary dance of the finest quality in the Lake Tahoe area through performance, education and outreach, enriching the community as a whole and as a cultural destination”. Since its launching in 2013 by founders Christin Hanna (Artistic Director) and Constantine Baecher, over 35 works with 25 guest artists and over 44 local dance artists have been presented on the festival.
There will be three distinctive evenings of work centered around a common theme as well as interviews with artist from throughout the world. The program will feature a few works from previous summers plus works performed by artists who were originally slated to perform live this year in Tahoe. This includes works by Bryan Arias, Agnes DeMille, Jacopo Godani, Erick Hawkins, Lester Horton, Martha Graham, Lauren Lovette, Marco Pelle, Paul Taylor, and Anthony Tudor, with special guests Daniel Baudendistel, Ashley Bouder, Adrian Danchig-Waring, Kristin Draucker, Daphne Fernberger, Stephen Hanna, Lloyd Knight, and Wendy Whelan.
Christin Hanna performed with the Nevada Festival Ballet and had an active freelance dance career with Oakland Ballet, Ballet NY, and Cincinnati Ballet. She was also a founding member of New Chamber Ballet.
“This year’s festival offers us a format where we can not only continue but enhance our mission with the breadth of works and artists we are fortunate to have as collaborators,” said Hanna. “This is a fantastic opportunity to hear about the works from the artists themselves, framed in an evening programmed to weave the works together. When faced with the inability to have a festival, we knew we had a unique opportunity. As piece by piece came together, Constantine and I grew more excited at the ability to weave a bit of dance history and education into the three evenings. For those who have never been to our festival, this year will reach around the world to showcase North Lake Tahoe as a stunning beautiful backdrop for dance.” – Michelle Tabnick Public Relations July 8, 2020 press release.
Here is the festival’s schedule as listed in the press release:
Wednesday July 22: AMERICAN CLASSICAL BALLET
What are the works that defined the beginnings of ballet in America, and how has that laid the grounds for what we see in ballet today?
Featuring works by Agnes DeMille, Antony Tudor, and Lauren Lovette.
Hosted by Christin Hanna and Constantine Baecher, with special guests Daniel Baudendistel (formerly American Ballet Theater, Joffrey Ballet), Stephen Hanna (formerly New York City Ballet, Billy Elliott on Broadway), Adrian Danchig-Waring (New York City Ballet) and Ashley Bouder (New York City Ballet).
Thursday July 23: MID-CENTURY MODERN DANCE
As ballet brought its grand traditions from Europe, new forms were being created that broke some of the traditional bounds of ballet, but still tell a story, using new lines and shapes.
Works from Martha Graham, Paul Taylor, Erick Hawkins and Lester Horton.
Hosted by Christin Hanna and Kristina Berger (Erick Hawkins Dance Company, Lester Horton Dance Theater; Professor at Dean College Joan Palladino School of Dance ), with special guests Lloyd Knight (Martha Graham Dance Company), Wendy Whelan (New York City Ballet), and Kristin Draucker (Paul Taylor Dance Company).
Friday July 24: DANCE NOW: CONTEMPORARY WORKS
A window into today’s cutting-edge dance and choreography through the lens of three diverse works.
Featuring works from Marco Pelle, Jacopo Godani, and Bryan Arias.
Hosted by Constantine Baecher (founder of the Copenhagen International Choreography Competition) and Marco Pelle (choreographer), with special guests Daphne Fernberger (formerly Jacopo Godani Dresden/Frankfurt Dance) and Bryan Arias (choreographer; former dancer with Nederlands Dance Theater, Kidd Pivot).
The Young Dancers Workshop, a three-week intensive for dancers ages 10 and up, offers training with festival artists in small class sizes with an emphasis on classical ballet, modern technique and improvisation. This year’s workshop is being held outdoors to honor social distancing guidelines, and the dancers will be creating their own dance film shorts to be presented online during the festival.
Each evening’s presentation will go live at 6:00pm PDT on laketahoedancecollective.org and will remain available for 24 hours. A suggested donation of $25 will help Lake Tahoe Dance Collective continue its mission to bring the finest in dance to the shores of Lake Tahoe. Donors who contribute more than $75 will receive a Lake Tahoe Dance Festival t-shirt and a 2020 Lake Tahoe Dance Festival wine glass, a Gala tradition.
For more information about the Lake Tahoe Dance Festival, click HERE.
Written and compiled by Jeff Slayton for LADC, July 11, 2020.
Featured image: Kristin Draucker of Paul Taylor Dance Company – Photo courtesy of LTDC.