CDF presented a series of workshops and discussions in Spring 2006 to explore the role of Dramaturgy in Dance.
Dancemakers are increasingly collaborating with dramaturgs to create new work. A dramaturg is an artistic collaborator who brings historical, cultural, theoretical or practical perspective to the creative process. This series explored the concept of dramaturgy in dance and asked, through workshops and discussions, what the role of dramaturgy means to artists working in theater and dance today.
NYC-based choreographer Ralph Lemon and dramaturg Katherine Profeta - collaborators from 1997 - 2004 in the Geography Trilogy - came to Chicago the weekend of April 28-29, 2007 to lead a workshop and conversation about the nature of their collaboration.
Inner Workings of the Dramaturgical Process
During this workshop, Profeta and Lemon modeled some of their process and talked about their working relationship. Lemon showed a video piece while Profeta demonstrated how she might react to this new material on the spot without having seen it before. Writing activities were incorporated based on Lemon’s recent interests in storytelling and performance. Participants divided up in choreographer and dramaturg pairs, playing out both roles, in order to better learn how a dramaturg might respond to a choreographer’s work.
Conversation with Lemon and Profeta at the MCA
Offering insight into their personal working relationship, Lemon and Profeta painted an informative view of the actual day-to-day working relationship between a choreographer and dramaturg. Lemon talked about the Geography Trilogy, from inception to production, and Profeta about her involvement as the dramaturg for the project, and both artists shared some of their correspondence from different points within their making of the work.