Dress Rehearsal With: Belisama Contemporary

I spent a few hours last weekend with twenty-five dancers, two choreographers, and an astonishing variety of light, color, sound, and fabric. My sneak peek of Belisama Contemporary‘s upcoming spring production offered a varied glimpse of modern, jazz, and contemporary ballet work as the company marked, teched, and recorded several numbers Saturday afternoon.

Since the event was closed to the public, there were only a few spectators allowed to look in on the process. Sitting in the darkened theater, surrounded by quiet empty seats and watching the dances come to life, has such power. Transported, with nothing in front of your eyes but the stage, it’s an intimate experience to hear the dancers breathing and their feet swishing over the floors as they mark each piece without music. Bright lights buzz on and off; spotlights change focus.  The colors on the backdrop (or in my newly learned theater vocabulary, the ‘cyclorama’/’cyc’) melt from cobalt blue to evergreen to firey reds and oranges as the director works to find just the right fit.  

The dances start, stop, repeat; start, stop, repeat.  Breathe, swish, breathe; breathe, swish, breathe. Feet pound the stageboards softly; silk and nylon murmur in hushed rustles.  Slowly, music is added onstage. Your glance begins to notice the beauty of the costumes which have been there all along, the careful and dramatic makeup, as one by one the works take on their final forms.  What an afternoon, and what a special day to be invited to witness.  I have so enjoyed our recent PR work with this joyful group, and am eagerly anticipating the spring repertory concert in all its polish and glory.  (I am also thrilling at the fact that I’ve seen the dancers working before the final product is complete, as that polish was being born and applied.)

Belisama Contemporary Dance Company‘s Spring Repertory Concert will be held Friday, April 13, and Saturday, April 14, 2012 at James A. Little Theater at 1060 Cerrillos Road in Santa Fe. Performances begin at 7pm.  This 90-minute pre-professional show promises passion and variety, with works across genres by nine well-loved local choreographers. Founder/Director Adrienne Bellis; Artistic Director Annie Kohn. For performance tickets, call 505-670-2152 or email belisamadance@aol.com.  Visit www.belisamadance.com for more information, and to see the schedule of modern, jazz, contemporary ballet, and Irish dance classes.  Tread carefully―you may be inspired to take to the stage yourself.

Also, for more magnificence, check out Cynthia Whitney-Ward’s gorgeous photo blog of the dress rehearsal on Chasing Santa Fe.

Leaps and bounds!
Kristin

Photos by Kristin Carlson and her handy Hipstamatic iPhone app

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