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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Dance Augusta's 'Parallels' takes modern approach

Staff Writer
JON-MICHAEL SULLIVAN/STAFF
Dancer Caitlin McCormack teaches Christopher Wilson (left) and Justin Reeves movements for a contemporary piece titled Dark Passenger that is one of two numbers she choreographed for Dance Augusta's spring show, Parallels.

 

Contemporary ballet dance takes the stage Friday in Dance Augusta’s spring production at Imperial Theatre.

Well-known for its annual Christmas staging of The Nutcracker, dancers in the upcoming show Parallels trade classical ballet moves and pointe shoes for modern, abstract dance styles.

“Everyone knows we do The Nutcracker,” said Dance Augusta’s business administrator, Bon Ellis. “We are trying to reach a new audience to let them know we do something very different, unique and interesting.”

Dance Augusta, a pre-professional training company, is returning to Imperial Theatre after two years of performances at its in-house studio, Ellis said.

Parallels will be performed at 7 p.m. Friday, May 3. Tickets are $25-$30 from (706) 722-8341 or imperialtheatre.com.

The show features six pieces and 20 dancers. Two works were choreographed by former Dance Augusta dancer Caitlin McCormack, 22, who recently returned to Augusta.

McCormack’s piece Woodwork was the second dance she choreographed during her junior year at the University of South Carolina. The other dance, Dark Passenger, was choreographed for the company’s two male dancers and will premiere during Parallels.

“It’s the first time we’ve had two men in the company,” she said. “They’re both incredibly talented and have so much potential.”

McCormack danced for the Augusta Ballet School from age 3 through high school. After college, she lived in New York City for five months.

“I’ll always feel like Dance Augusta is my home,” she said. “That’s where I developed my technique and grew up.”

The show opens with a 25-minute piece from Dance Augusta’s repertoire, Hearth of Embers. It also features a dance with guest artists Amanda Hulen, of the Louisville Ballet, and Morgan Hulen, of contemporary dance company Momix.

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