DancEstrella Investigates Ideas of Beauty, Perfection in Fall Show

Thursday, November 24, 2022

Public Invited to 4 Free Performances of ‘By the Light of Imperfection’ Dec. 2 & 3

Estrella Mountain Community College (EMCC) invites students, employees, and community members to DancEstrella’s fall show “By the Light of Imperfection” on Dec. 2 and 3 in the Performing Arts Center on campus, 3000 N. Dysart Road, Avondale. The student dance company will offer four free performances at 3 and 7 p.m. on both days.

The show will feature two full company works, “Assemblage” by Artistic Director Janaea Lyn McAlee and “Making Space” by EMCC professor and guest choreographer Jazmin Parker. Parker’s piece encompasses the idea of expanding oneself physically, mentally, and emotionally in order to allow life to happen, she said.

“On so many occasions, we humans get stagnant and comfortable in whatever stage of life we are in and it is hard to get out and/or move to the next stage, whether it is natural or unnatural progression,” Professor Parker said. “To feel the growing pains of life, the pull and push of where we want to go but can’t seem to make a choice because of fear, is what this dance represents for me.”

She said that putting her movement in 12 different bodies was a challenging task, but it allowed her to “explore in at least 12 different ways how one life-changing decision can go in 12 directions and how humans experience change.”

The show will also feature group dances created by Choreography 2 students. John Boston choreographed “Little Brother,” which explores the changing dynamics in sibling relationships as they inevitably break apart from an interdependent and cohesive unit as each grows and becomes independent. Mya Fallon choreographed “The Systems Are Not For Us,” which challenges norms of masculine and feminine identity through the language of hip-hop. Ryleigh Richards created “Unfettered,” which looks at the individual who chooses to live outside of what the status quo dictates, and Anasazi Whitney created “With You,” which celebrates the healing power of a healthy relationship.

The dances investigate ideas about beauty, perfection, and the opportunity to find value in what is not always seen as such, Professor McAlee said.

“The themes we drew from included honoring a beauty in what is perceived as flawed or broken, imperfect or transforming,” she said. “Embracing the awareness that perfection does not exist.”

Rounding out the show will be small group dances choreographed and performed by students in dance performance classes.

“They are collaborative reflections on the ways they have learned to find lessons and beauty in bad choices, difficult and/or outgrown relationships, and to make peace with the necessary discomfort that comes with the inevitable cycles of birth, death, and rebirth in all aspects of life,” Professor McAlee said.

Audience members will have the opportunity to participate in a Q & A with the dancers at the end of each show. Masks are optional but still encouraged.

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