ELEVATE CHICAGO DANCE - ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Elevate 2018 Artists
Textile Dance for the South Stairwell
Washington St. Staircase
Performers weave their bodies and limbs together in a textile dance to recreate architecture and choreography.
Molly Hillson, Amanda Ramirez, Dylan Roth, Gretchen Soechting, Megan Szajna, Laura Tennal
Choreographer: Rachel Damon
Music: Composed by Ryan Ingebritsen, recorded by Matthew Griffo and Leyla I. Royale
Costumes by Nadine Lollino
Textiles by Rachel Damon
About the Piece
This performance weaves together choreography, textiles, sound, and architecture. Using a technique called "arm knitting" that engages the whole body in movement, the performers create and dance with large-scale textiles.
Each dancer wears an individual speaker, carrying one layer of the sound score throughout the space. When the dancers are grouped together, you can hear the polyphonic score as a whole. Damon’s textile dances reimagine the history of women's domestic arts as fully-embodied expressions of creativity and selfhood. The design elements of textiles, costumes, and sound intermingle time-tested approaches with new technologies in an effort to honor the old by looking at traditions through a contemporary frame. Space is transformed sonically and visually, revealing freedom in the familiar. This imaginative approach to the possibilities of a transitional space such as a stairwell help create joy and wonder.
About the Artist
Artistic Director: Rachel Damon
Booking/Management: Rachel Damon -
Synapse Arts was founded in 2004 in Chicago by interdisciplinary artists determined to make contemporary dance affordable and available to all. Based in the idea of synaptic exchange, the company engages artists and audiences in the making of dance-theater to nurture individual identities and challenge social norms. The company is known for site-specific and outdoor works that bring dance to the people. An Arts Partner in Residence with the Chicago Park District, Synapse teaches weekly classes to children and adults at both Loyola Park in Rogers Park and Berger Park in Edgewater. With a history of performing throughout the Midwest, Synapse has been presented outside of Chicago at The Southern Theater, Intermedia Arts, The Bryant Lake Bowl Theater, and the TEK BOX in Minneapolis, as well as in Galesburg, Illinois and Columbus and Cleveland, Ohio.
Synapse is home to the works of Director Rachel Damon, and under her direction the company has created projects that have been supported by the Chicago Dancemakers Forum Lab Artist Grant, MetLife New Stages for Dance, Experimental Sound Studio: CROSSCUT, Links Hall, The CliffDwellers Arts Foundation, The Illinois Arts Council, The Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago, The Ragdale Foundation, The Chicago Artists Coalition, The Morrison-Shearer Foundation, The MacArthur Fund for Arts and Culture at the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, The City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, 3Arts, and many others.
Synapse forms connections between performers and audiences, using dance theatre as a means to examine and celebrate what it means to be human. By creating site-specific works we take dance to welcoming environments and are able to share this expressive form with audiences from all income levels and walks of life.
Find out more at www.synapsearts.com.