Archive for May, 2011

May 31, 2011

the problem with modern dance in d.c. (read: everywhere)

by ashleyandersondances

Visit this link for a take on the dance scene in D.C. and it’s various issues.

I was reading and mostly following along until the writer starting talking about how Philly is so awesome and/or L.A. is much better at addressing those issues. Mostly because I know a lot of the “140” dance companies in Philly would fall privy to the same criticism presented earlier of D.C. choreographers, or people in most cities can identify similar issues within their own field/scene.

I think it’s great to take a critical look at what in each city isn’t working (why loveDANCEmore started Mudson or a journal for example) and even great to put that in context of other cities. But is the grass ALWAYS greener?



May 30, 2011

memorial day

by ashleyandersondances

not memorial day in the most traditional sense but here are…
some videos which are the best the internet can do when serving up performance memories
or memorable performances at least

just the tip of the iceberg

katherine dunham in stormy weather

michael michael

pina pina

loie fuller, is this real? i hope

d man in the waters. a piece by bill t. jones commemorating one of many young dancers who died of AIDs

merce merce

May 29, 2011


by ashleyandersondances

Here is the link for the Trib’s upcoming “dance notes” featuring information about student concerts by Janet Gray Studios & the Salt Lake City Ballet.

To read about students in another part of the country check out this NYTimes article on the Ailey student concert in NY








May 28, 2011

oops, too soon

by ashleyandersondances

That last post went out before we saw the SLTrib write-up of the new festival by Kathy Adams.

Read the link below for insights into the size of the festival, the goals of the festival as well as thoughts about the various couples teaching & presenting their work.

May 28, 2011

soon in june

by ashleyandersondances!/pages/SaltDanceFest/196748103686349

Click the link above to access the SaltDanceFest page on facebook. It has all the details about the workshop, how you can join as a drop-in or how you can attend the performances open to the general public.
SaltDanceFest is billing this concert series as a riveting night with some contemporary masters. I don’t really believe in the word master in relationship to choreography BUT I do believe the line-up sounds like an excellent addition to the summer scene in SLC and I’m excited to see how the festival unfolds. You can get all your tickets through the Kingsbury Hall Box Office ( or at the door. All showings are at the Marriott Center for Dance on the U campus.
Friday June 3 @ 8pm you can check out Chris Aiken & Angie Hauser with the premiere of “Sign of the Sparrow” (co-commissioned by SaltDanceFest). The piece is inspired from the work of Joseph Cornell (if you haven’t checked him out do yourself a favor) $12 general, $8 students, U faculty/staff
Saturday June 4 @8pm you can check out a double bill featuring iconic duo Eiko & Koma (performing Duet) as well Teri & Oliver Steele’s  Still Waters Run. $12 general, $8 students, U faculty/staff
As always if you have reviews of these shows OR want to write about your participation in SaltDanceFest (on whatever level) send them to so they can be blogged, printed in the journal and included in the SL dance archive at large.
May 25, 2011

happy tap day

by ashleyandersondances

my sister brings it to my attention that today is national tap dance day!
who knows why today is the day but I hardly need an excuse to post the videos below,
one features Honi Coles (who you may recognize from Dirty Dancing among other hits) dancing the B.S. chorus (Eddie Brown’s B.S. chorus is pretty well known and was the teacher of local tapper/studio wizard Janet Gray).
some of the other videos are popular from movies, tv & tap history

May 25, 2011

the beast

by ashleyandersondances

SB has a preview video for his greatest hits show coming up next month.

Click here to check it out.

May 24, 2011

interesting take on 2011 A.W.A.R.D.s

by ashleyandersondances

in our most recent learning to loveDANCEmore, MANIFESTO, board president Ishmael Houston-Jones interrogated the ideas behind competitive dance events in his article, Dance. Eats. Money. 

other artists took the issue in different ways throughout the issue, including Juan Aldape’s review of the Sugar Show and Brittany Reese’s commentary about hosting the Sugar Show (an A.W.A.R.D. show offspring)

the 2011 series already took place in cities across the country with Helen Simoneau winning 10K in NY and now the Philadelphia shows completed. the Broad Street Review (article linked below) took particular interest in one of the entries which spoofed the entire production.

May 24, 2011

utah arts festival on vimeo

by ashleyandersondances

the sun is finally out which means it’s basically time for the summer arts festival here in slc.

the festival already has a vimeo page which features a preview of what ballet west might have in store. sure that other groups will be posting soon so check it out

May 23, 2011

Living Traditions — Juan Aldape

by ashleyandersondances

It rained and poured this past weekend. The Living Traditions festival had a three day line up of dance, music, food and crafts. Having grown up in Salt Lake, I  have attended this festival for several years. While I spend the majority of my time at this event listening to the music and eating food, I make time to see one or two dance groups.

Of the weekend’s line up, I was able to see The Utah Dance Hispanic Alliance on Friday evening. UDHA presents the best folk dances from across Latin America. By having a professional company, they aim to “elevate the quality of Hispanic Folk Dances in Utah.” ( The piece that stood out was a dance in a red full-body suede costume and jingle-bells attached to the dancer’s shins, producing the ching-ching sound reminiscent of most folk and  native dances. In 2004 I had the opportunity to join Jessica Salazar, Artistic Director of UDHA, and her company for a day in the studio. My observations for that day were for research that resulted in the paper Reaffirming Corpo-Identity:The Contemporary Moving Self Through a Traditional Perspective. The paper examined the role that folk or historic dances play in establishing our sense of self  as dancers. In reflecting on this experience, I couldn’t help but reevaluate what makes certain dances “traditional”?

The Salt Lake City Arts council presents this festival with the intention to celebrate “authentic and traditional folk and ethnic arts.By preserving the cultural traditions in their community, Living Traditions artists make a great contribution to our sense of place and our shared understanding through cultural expressions.” (

So what are living “traditions”? I question the local pre-conceptions of what traditional dances are. While I respect, value and really enjoy the dances presented during the Living Traditions festival, the program fails to include broader living dance traditions, at least in the local dance community. Do the dances created locally by…say, Charlotte Christensen, Sam Hanson, Adam Sklute, Derryl Yeager and Movement Forum hold a position in our sense of place? Do they exist beyond our “traditions” imagination and are currently only mapped or dismissed as contemporary enjoyment/exploration?

Understanding how local organizations define the terms “traditions,” “authentic” and “ethnic”  is important for dance because such knowledge helps us choose between methods of how dance organizations and companies are chosen for such events. This knowledge, when drawn from a diverse dance collective, informs us of the unlikely universality of dance and the ways in which we choose to express our local histories and traditions differently.

Juan Aldape is a choreographer about town. You can read more about his projects at

%d bloggers like this: