Danceworks Performance Company (DPC) joins Present Music (PM) in a collaboration of "new" new music inspired by "old" new music with an evening-length premiere featuring the music of Igor Stravinsky's timeless Soldier's Tale interspersed with new music by the hipster composers of Sleeping Giant composers collective on March 6-9, 2014 at Next Act Theatre. Together, DPC and Present Music will reimagine and reinvigorate the classic tale with a contemporary twist, with narration by special guest Jason Powell and brand new choreography by Dani Kuepper.
Don’t resist the temptation. Come see what happens!
Histories a companion piece to Igor Stravinsky’s The Soldier’s Tale by Sleeping Giant composers' collective
Using the same septet instrumental scoring as Stravinsky, the composers cast their movements as responses to this chamber piece, occasionally quoting from it directly, or at least alluding to it. In some ways these are remixes, in current musical parlance. They take elements of the original — a percussion flourish here, a violin or trumpet phrase there — embroider them ambitiously with new material and build new structures around them. The set has its own overall architecture as well, thanks largely to Norman’s four aphoristic contributions — In, Between, Through and Out — which begin and end Histories and connect the other movements. These are wild, cacophonous pieces, but from within each a single, lyrical line shines through the welter of sound.
In Agitated, Stumbling Like an Endless Run-On Sentence, Cooper used the percussion writing toward the end of Soldier’s Tale as the starting point for a robust fantasy, at times transferring the high-energy bursts in Stravinsky’s music to the brasses and woodwinds and strings.
Cerrone sent the woodwinds and brasses up the aisles, where they mostly produced toneless, breathy sounds to accompany the vibraphone and strings in Recovering, an eerie magnification of a fragment from the only moment of repose in the Stravinsky, the Pastorale. And Honstein built a few Stravinskian gestures into Marionette, an abstract assortment of explosive figures in constantly changing combinations of timbre.
- New York Times
Danceworks Performance Company
Danceworks Performance Company (DPC) is a dynamic group of dancers/choreographers that is committed to creating and performing contemporary dance that is physical, virtuosic, entertaining and honest. Collaboration fuels the creative vision of the company members as they regularly work alongside guest artists including musicians, poets, visual artists, actors and choreographers. DPC strives to make its work relevant and accessible to a wide range of audience members by regularly performing and teaching workshops and residencies in diverse communities throughout southeastern Wisconsin.
Danceworks Performance Company was founded in 1997 by a group of talented young dancer/choreographers who spilled from the halls of the UW-Milwaukee dance program and onto the Milwaukee dance scene. These dancers included Anina Bacon, Becky Blong, Cynthia Collins-Sinotte, Joan Fernandez, Andrea Hill, Jen Moore, Laura Teska and Sarah Wilbur, and they shared three things. First, they had been trained by the faculty of the UWM dance program (Marcia Ruth Parsons, Ed Burgess, Janet Lilly and Ferne Caulker) as well as a series of stellar visitors to the program. They also shared an interest in staying in Milwaukee to create and perform their own work. Finally, they envisioned a company of dancer/choreographers, a highly trained ensemble that supported several distinct voices within a shared aesthetic. The Danceworks board of directors invited Sarah Wilbur to become the artistic director of DPC, the first contemporary dance group to emerge in Milwaukee in over a decade.
Less than a year after DPC’s debut, Dani Kuepper became a member of the new company, immediately establishing herself as an up and coming choreographic talent. After many years of collaboration, Sarah Wilbur and Dani Kuepper became Co-Artistic Directors in 2006, sharing choreographic responsibility and artistic vision. Since Sarah Wilbur’s 2007 move to the west coast, Dani Kuepper has taken the reins of leadership as the Artistic Director. Since its inception, DPC has been performing to critical acclaim. The new artistic leadership, along with the accomplished company dancers, promises to achieve new bounds of artistic achievement this season and into the coming years.
Sleeping Giant Composer Collective
Sleeping Giant is a collective of six emerging Brooklyn-based composers Timo Andres, Andrew Norman, Jacob Cooper, Christopher Cerrone, Robert Honstein, and Ted Hearne. These “talented guys” (The New Yorker), who are “rapidly gaining notice for their daring innovations, stylistic range and acute attention to instrumental nuance” (WQXR) have composed a diverse corpus of music that prizes vitality over a rigidly uniform aesthetic. Their works—ranging from large orchestral pieces and fully staged operas to ambient electronic songs—have appeared in clubs and concert halls throughout the US and Europe.
Dani Kuepper is the Artistic Director of Danceworks Performance Company (DPC), the resident contemporary dance company of Danceworks Inc. She joined DPC in 1998 and has since choreographed more than 25 dances for the company, as well as several evening length works. Dani received both her BFA and MFA from UW-Milwaukee, where she has been a faculty member of the UWM dance department since 1999. As an undergraduate at UWM, Dani performed the solo, Mrs. Schultz, at the national American College Dance Festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.. Dani has choreographed extensively in the Milwaukee community and has enjoyed collaborations with Milwaukee Opera Theatre, Milwaukee Chamber Orchestra, Florentine Opera Company, Present Music, First Stage Children’s Theater, Milwaukee Art Museum, Sweetwater Organics, Next Actors (Theatre for Youth Training Program) and Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra. Dani was honored in 2009 as a “Forty Under 40” recipient by the Business Journal of Milwaukee and also received the UWM Alumni Association Teaching Excellence Award for non-tenure track in instructors in 2010.