Living Art

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by Jenna Wroblewski, Contributing Wrtier

The Overture Center for the Arts hosted a live art performance from Madison Contemporary Vision Dance Company on Saturday, September 21st and Sunday September 22nd. Lights, costumes and expressive dancing came together to create a recital that was almost surreal.

Depictions of artwork from the applauded artists Edgar Degas, Salvador Dali, Gustav Klimt and Georgia O’Keefe ignited one’s imagination. The dances portrayed an idea of both the artist’s motive for each piece as well as what one’s mind might conjure while walking through an art gallery.

The performance was comprised of four sections, one for each artist. The various performances captured each artist’s specific style and persona. The live art performance displayed soloists as well as large group creations that breathed a tangible perspective of timeless artwork into the audience’s mind.

The chosen songs and dancers’ choreography matched the style of the paintings, while contrast lighting and strobe lights complimented the vibrant presentation of every number. Pieces ranged from fast-paced to somber, and from mellifluent and honeyed to stark and mysterious. Moreover, the nature of contemporary dance is inherently fully of potential, like a unique work of art ready to be constructed. Herein lies the raw beauty of pieces that range from crisp and orderly, to deviant and chaotic.

Between artist representations, a local Switchblade-folk group, called Emerald Grove, performed on stage to maintain the audience’s engagement. Their music exuded a homey, Trampled-By-Turtles quality as they plucked away at banjos, strummed guitars, shook tambourines, and huffed away at their harmonicas, and their happy personalities left the audience chuckling. Although Emerald Grove’s music was not entirely centered on the theme of the recital, it was palette cleansing and gave the audience a chance to collect their thoughts before another set of dance pieces began. It was also a great way to support the local artists, allowing them to display their own works of art.

When the performance was over, all the dancers came out and were given a standing ovation. It was obvious their performance had been well received as audience members whistled and clapped vivaciously. The dancers’ inspirational, authentic and passionate performance left the audience wondering how to harness their own creativity into making works of art of their own.

Due to technical difficulties, this article was published a week later than anticipated.

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