Of Moving Colors chose 13 people in the community and asked them to tell their stories through dance.
It didn’t matter that the
storytellers had never choreographed a dance. Of Moving Colors provided help with that.
“What we wanted was their stories,” artistic director Garland Goodwin Wilson says. “And what we received was a range from intimate to corporate to fantasy.”
And all will come together in Of Moving Colors’ season finale “You Tell Me,” which is being staged Friday and Saturday in the Manship Theatre.
Wilson collaborated with community and state leaders, from directors of top organizations and charities to highly successful entrepreneurs and business owners.
“We interviewed and worked beside them, offering them a chance to tell their stories and passions to be adapted to the stage,” Wilson says.
The choreographers include Paul Arrigo, of Visit Baton Rouge; Norman Chenevert, of Chenevert Architects; David Coner, of Digital, FX; Ann Connelly, of Ann Connelly Fine Art; Ashley Fox-Smith, of Country Roads Magazine; Dima Ghawi, of Dima Ghawi LLC; Gwen Hamilton, of New Schools for BR/East BR Redevelopment Authority; Kelly Hurtardo, of Our Lady of the Lake Foundation; Heather Kleinpeter, of Burns & Co.; John Miller, of Lamar Corp.; Davis Rhorer, of the Downtown Development District; and Torrence and Thurman Thomas, of Ask the Thomas Bros.
The guest choreographers described what they wanted to see happening on the stage. Some even suggested music.
“They worked beside our choreographers in the process,” Wilson says. “They had the opportunity to influence all elements of their piece, from the central theme to the music to the staging to the costumes. We have works ranging from contemporary dance to pedestrian to Flamenco — in other words, we told our guest choreographers, ‘You Tell Me what to do.’”
Company choreographers working with guests are Wilson, Courtney Landry and Bethany Jones McCullough. The company also is partnering with New York City-based dancer/choreographer Lindsey Dietz Marchant in creating one of the show’s works.
Marchant’s credits include working alongside Aszure Barton, Martha Clarke and Monica Bill Barnes.
“This is going to be an unexpected adventure created by some of our city’s most incredible individuals,” Wilson said. “We’ll have nine of our dancers premiering 12 new works. Hearing the visions from our guest choreographers has been an extremely inspiring process.”