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Robert Abrams
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Chamber Dance Project
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The Chamber Dance Project Spring Gala

by Robert Abrams
April 28, 2003
New York, NY

Featured Dance Company:

Chamber Dance Project
Chamber Dance Project (office)
P.O. Box 4499
New York, NY 10163-4499

The Chamber Dance Project Spring Gala

Report by Robert Abrams
April 28, 2003

The Chamber Dance Project held its Spring Gala at the Tribeca Rooftop on April 28, 2003. The event was a multi-sensory feast, with excellent food, raffle prizes and conversation. Members of the Chamber Dance Project company, a group of dancers and musicians led by Artistic Director Diane Coburn Bruning, performed excerpts from several of their works. Since these were excerpts, it is not fair to review the choreography per se, but I can say that the excerpts provided a compelling argument for buying tickets to their performances (New York Performance Season at the Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College - Wednesday and Thursday, May 28th and 29th, 2003; Westchester Performance at the Westchester Conservatory of Music in White Plains - Saturday, May 31st, 2003 - 8:00 PM). See www.chamberdance.org for more information on buying tickets.

The Chamber Dance Project showed off some of the best witty, baroque clock-work I have seen. The dances have rich detail balanced by both precision and humor. Even in just a few short excerpts, they pushed boundaries and showed off an unexpected diversity. The works were rooted in contemporary ballet and were often danced in toe shoes, but ranged beyond this core in significant ways. One dance featuring a spoken word artist was unlike what one usually sees on a dance stage, yet it was very effective, both as a dance and as a message: My hat is off to anyone who can make it as a full-time poet (and since I do sometimes wear a hat, this isn't just a figure of speech).

The performances featured excerpts from Ode (choreography by Diane Coburn Bruning and music by Tomaso Albinoni), Vivace from "American String Quartet (music by Antonin Dvorak), Passages (Choreography by Diane Coburn Bruning and music by John Mackey), and Bowery Poetry Club, et al. (Concept by Diane Bruning and Bob Holman with Choreography by Victor Quijada). The dancers included Bonnie Pickard, Lisa Tachick, Christine Winkler, John Welker and Victor Quijada. Musicians included Chris Lee, Philip Payton, Thomacz Rzeczyck, Dorothy Sobieski. The poet was Cristin O'Keefe Aptowicz. Costumes were by Holly Hynes. Peter Boal, a guest artist with the Chamber Dance Project and a principal dancer with the New York City Ballet gave the introduction to the performances.

The benefit honored Sy Stewart.

The benefit ended with social dancing to a DJ. Many of the attendees got out on the dance floor with enthusiasm, and more than a few knew what they were doing. All in all, it was an elegant event with quality performance and social dance.

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