Fall into Dance: Sweet Briar Dance Concert, Fall 2005

Gentle reader, on this page you will find photos from a dance concert held at Sweet Briar in which my daughter, Isobel, participated.

The mode of dancing taught was mostly modern dance, and the impulse or motive behind the numbers seems to have been to allow the girls to get into touch with their inner feelings while remaining inside a group, and thus the group itself becomes an expression of shared authentic movement. The cover illustration in black and white (it didn't come out very well in the old scanner) showed a set of girls standing on another set of girls hands just below, all of them forming a kind of ecstatic linking "h." The memories through pictures and indeed visuals left over were made possible by cameras, so another element in the experience was how afterwards the camera could freeze moments which the eye could only apprehend fleetingly.

Each of the numbers were given names to reflect what dancing had emerged during choreography, and the teacher alternated girls dancing alone or in pairs, with girls dancing in groups.

I begin with Sara C as Mi Amante:

Mi Amante

There were several sequences called Social Constructs of Reality. In one Yvette danced near another girl:

Social Constructs of Reality (Isobel)

In another she was alone:

Social Constructs of Reality (Isobel)

In a third an pair of girls seem to have formed a single changing figure of two bodies interacting:

Social Constructs of Reality

The next made me remember Ben Jonson's translation of one of Sappho's fragments:

The dear good angel of the spring The nightingale.

Mary Barnard Englishes the Greek this way:

The nightingale's

The soft-spoken announcer of Spring's presence.

The teacher and girls gave this traditional image of harmony, a modern twist: The Harried Song of the Nightingale:

Harried Nightingale

There was a traditional ballerina:


The dance was, though, best when the girls were allowed to break away from conventionalized patterns and form paradigms of their own, as in this wittily-titled Tangle in Cultivation:

Tangle in Cultivation

The teacher joined in too:

Harried Nightingale (2)

And there was beautifully still allegorical closure:

Thread of Life

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Page Last Updated: 26 January 2006