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Goose Route: Modern dance that's approachable

Audience participation encouraged at annual festival

Audience participation encouraged at annual festival

July 12, 2007|By TIFFANY ARNOLD

SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. - Goose Route Dance Festival organizer Kitty Clark has some advice for newcomers: "If somebody's piece is too weird for you, don't worry about it, there's another performer who will do something different that you might like."

The annual Goose Route Dance Festival - a two-week showcase of modern and contemporary dance - enters its seventh year, offering a variety of dance with companies coming from New York and Philadelphia.

Performances, classes and dance-themed discussions are scheduled from Friday, July 13, through Sunday, July 22.

Featured guests include Darrah (pronounced DARE-uh) Carr Dance, a New York City ensemble that weds traditional Irish dance with modern dance, and Makoto Hirano, a Philadelphia dancer who will perform a dance-theater piece about the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II.

There also will be a piece called "Appetite," performed by the Meghan Durham/Merge Dance company, which involves chocolate cake as a prop.

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The aim of the festival is to package modern dance so that it's approachable to both the layman and the dance aficionado - not by dumbing down the art form, but by encouraging the audience to participate.

During the festival, performers will teach public dance classes open to all ability levels. There are preperformance talks, and dress rehearsals are open for public viewing.

"I want people to feel like it's OK to ask questions," Clark said.

And with modern dance, Clark said questions such as "what does that mean?" or "I don't understand?" abound.

"With modern dance, it doesn't give you a story. It's not a story ballet," Clark said. "It asks of the audience that they participate in the interpretation - they are often afraid to do that because they are afraid they are going to be wrong."

"I want people to have the freedom to interpret," Clark said.




If you go ...



WHAT: Seventh annual Goose Route Dance Festival

WHEN: Various dates Friday, July 13, through Sunday, July 22

WHERE: Locations vary, though most events are at the War Memorial Building, 102 E. German St., Shepherdstown, W.Va.

COST: Admission varies; many events are free.

MORE: For tickets, class schedule and other information, go to www.gooseroute.org or call 304-876-6751.




Performance schedule



WHAT: Seventh annual Goose Route Dance Festival

WHEN: Various dates Friday, July 13, through Sunday, July 22

WHERE: Locations vary, though most events are at the War Memorial Building, 102 E. German St., Shepherdstown, W.Va.

COST: Admission varies; many events are free.

MORE: For tickets, class schedule and other information, go to www.gooseroute.org or call 304-876-6751.

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