Facing Front: Writing Dance Masterclass

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1/3: Counting to One Hundred. Photo by Herman Sorgeloos. Pictured, from left to right: Matteo Fargion, Jonathan Burrows.
2/3: Both Sitting Duet, 2002. Photo by Herman Sorgeloos. Pictured, from left to right: Matteo Fargion, Jonathan Burrows.
3/3: Quiet Dance. Photo by Alastair Muir. Pictured, from left to right: Jonathan Burrows, Matteo Fargion.

Choreographer Jonathan Burrows and composer Matteo Fargion lead a master class investigating choreographic and compositional process, performance and philosophies, questioning how a performance can be made and what it might communicate to someone watching. Practical work will concentrate on short, task-based exercises looking at how to find material and work with time, using formal means to amplify and clarify the dramaturgy of what’s happening.

Supported by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, Anna Drozdowski, a curator of performance, hosts European duo Jonathan Burrows and Matteo Fargion for a two-week retrospective of their collaborative career. Describing what they do as “handmade and human-scale,” the two have built a body of duets which juxtapose the formality of music composition with a radical and open approach to performance, composition and audience.

This workshop is for anybody involved in the performing arts: composers, choreographers, actors, dancers, musicians, directors, curators, teachers and writers. No special physical skills or clothing are necessary.

Registration is free, but required.


Grants & Grantees

Greg “Peache” Jarman (1947–2009) was a musician and a 2000 Pew Fellow in Folk and Traditional Arts.

New Paradise Laboratories continues its Center-funded investigation into improvisational structures, audience interactivity, and games of chance through the ongoing project An Investigation of Contingency and the Uses of Data Streams.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Roger LaMay is general manager at WXPN (88.5 FM), a public radio station operated by the University of Pennsylvania.

Choreographer Ralph Lemon talks about ephemerality in relationship to his work in the dance field, and the complexity of memory.

Grants & Grantees

Nicole Cousineau (Pew Fellow, 2007) makes multimedia dance theater based in strong, rigorous movement investigation.

Grants & Grantees

Laurence Salzmann is a visual artist and a 2001 Pew Fellow.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Jim Nicola has been the artistic director of New York Theatre Workshop since 1988.

Grants & Grantees

Percussionist Pablo Batista will blend traditional Afro-Cuban rhythms and contemporary Western instrumentation, Afro-Caribbean choreography and evocative multi-media imagery in a performance that will tell a story of the spiritual and cultural resilience of those forced to emigrate from Africa to the Americas and re-establish themselves with dignity.

A performance piece interpreting classical South Indian music and dance, inspired by themes of liberty and freedom drawn from Philadelphia’s history.

Questions of Practice

Dance scholar Linda Caruso Haviland shares her thoughts on restaging, reconstruction, reenactment, and reconstruction in dance.

Grants & Grantees

Ellen McLaughlin’s adaptation of the ancient Greek tragedy by Aeschylus included original music by sound designer Daniel Kluger.

The Mann Center for the Performing Arts recently announced plans for the Philadelphia Freedom Festival to honor early, Philadelphia-based civil rights activist, Octavius Catto.