The third annual Percussive Dance Extravaganza takes place in the John Waldron Arts Center on January 28 with special guest fiddler Rhys Jones and singer/songwriter Cindy Kallet. This year’s show promises favorites from the previous two years along with new choreography by Tamara Loewenthal and original music by Jamie Gans.
Tamara Loewenthal is a veteran dancer and choreographer in many traditional styles. “This year we’ll have flat footing and clogging from a variety of traditions. I’ve arranged for a wide variety from English wooden shoe clogging to French Canadian and Cape Breton step dancing. We’ll also have two sword dances. Most of the moves are traditional, but I’ve actually created a new one, a ‘wall scrape.’ These can be quite beautiful and even a bit dangerous. You have to really pay attention to what you and the other dancers are doing when there’s steel flying. “
Although fiddler Jamie Gans is contributing some original music to the evening, he doesn’t call himself a composer. “I like to say that I make up tunes,” he says. Gans works out of and through the tradition. “Actually, unless you know the tunes, you wouldn’t know which ones are mine and which are traditional. “ One of his pieces is titled, “The Road to Castle Dre.” “I was very influenced by an older fiddler and this tune is really a tribute and a sort of memory piece. “
Tamara Loewenthal wrapped up the interview by saying, “In addition to those we’ve mentioned there will be a lot of other guests helping with an evening that we think will be a real treat for dance and traditional music fans.”
Third Annual Percussive Dance Extravaganza:
A Fountain of Fancy Footwork, Fiddling and Fun
John Waldron Arts Center
January 28, 2010 at 7:30