Thursday, 26 June 2014

Ballet West meets Gaming in FantasyCon!

McGrath in George Balanchine's 'Rubies' ©The George Balanchine Trust

I spotted this little piece of news via my Twitter feed and felt compelled to share it with dear Terpsichore readers since it does have a tenuous link with Jane's recent coverage of the Bounden game. I also though it quite an interesting collaboration and very in keeping with my own interest in bringing classical ballet to a wider audience...

Elizabeth McGrath, First Soloist with Ballet West, is bringing her 'immersive, creative and beautiful' dance apparel and performance company Red Pirouette to Salt Lake City's FantasyCon Convention this July.

In its own words, FantasyCon is
the first convention of its kind to open the world of fantasy to all and create an interactive, immersive experience that celebrates pop fantasy culture.
and aims to
bring together the world of fantasy to celebrate the Medieval Renaissance culture and fantasy genres in games, films, artwork, and literary works.
The piece that McGrath and her company (including talented Ballet West Soloist Sayaka Ohtaki, Demi-Soloist Katlyn Addison, Artists Zachary Prentice of Breaking Pointe fame and Kimberly Ballard and Second Company member Lucas Horns) will bring to the convention is entitled 'A Magical Misadventure'. It promises to be"an exciting tale of what can happen when sorcery falls into dangerous hands" and will feature music from popular international video games Elder Scrolls (even I've heard of that one!) and Castelvania. Performances of the piece will be given on July 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th and interested readers can find out more about it here.

Ballet West (not to be confused with our own Ballet West in Scotland) is based in Salt Lake City and is considered to be the premier ballet company in the Western region of the country. It was also the subject of a unique Reality TV series 'Breaking Pointe', which went behind the scenes of the company and brought ballet to the audience of the CW Network! As a dancer and dance fan I was naturally hooked on both seasons of the show and I have been keeping a close eye on what the dancers that I admired during the show have been up to since. It's encouraging to see that McGrath is  passionate about bringing the art form of ballet to a new audience, and hopefully this collaboration will be the start of many between different creative minds across the globe.

Readers who are familiar with 'Breaking Pointe' will also no doubt be as excited to find out about Soloist Allison DeBona's new project Art With Alli ( search #artwithalli) as I was. I will leave it to the lady herself to describe it, and I encourage you to read more on her blog Allison's Pointe of View:  

Over the next 12 months, I am going to challenge you.  Ask yourself questions you’ve never asked before and push your mind and body to places you’ve never taken it before.  The great part about it is, you will not be alone!  This month I want you to explore your motivation for dancing and your contribution to our art form.  How are you planning on moving an audience to tears or make them jump to their feet with applause?  What will make you stand out on stage so people can’t take their eyes off you?  
I've already contributed my thoughts to her forum, and I hope you will all join me and share yours! 

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