Dance emerges in Southern Vermont


MANCHESTER, VT. >> In Vermont the Marble House Project in Dorset will welcome two choreographers/dancers this summer, along with a number of writers, theater people and musicians who also will enjoy residencies here.

Rachel McClellan Leonard, a Florida-based dancer and choreographer who will come to Marble House June 15 to July 2, will offer a talk and demonstration involving her new dance company, Surface Contemporary Dance and the New York dancer and choreographer Deborah Lohse, in residency July 27 to Aug. 14, will present a solo performance of works in progress.

They will give free performances at 6 p.m. Tuesday evenings, followed by receptions at the Marble West Inn, a bed-and-breakfast within walking distance of Marble House, said Sarah Walko, Marble House director.

"We have eight artists at a time, and all the resident artists live together in one house," she said, and one of the facility's studios is a dance movement studio.

IBIT, Intrinsic Beauty of Invisible Things, a dance company based in Brattleboro, Vt., will present a widely discussed dance, "Pieces of Now," 2 p.m. July 25 in the Arkell Pavilion at the Southern Vermont Arts Center.

Brenda Lynn Siegel's dance documentary, "Pieces of Now: Childhood Cancer Awareness Project," was inspired by the fight of a dear friend, Alexis Giallella, who passed away in November 2013, after a battle with cancer.

"It is meant to raise awareness about childhood cancer in the hopes that the more awareness we raise, the more work will be done to find a cure for this terrible illness," Siegel said. "This is an evening-length dance work telling the story of one young girl's journey and her courage. It is performed by dancers from age 10 to age 35, who portray Alexis and family members."

The sound score carries the voices of family members, she said.


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