With choreography inspired by the elements of earth air, water and fire, the OU School of Dance presents “The Elements of SummerDance,” the annual summer production of ballet and modern dance. Performances will be at 8 p.m. June 29-30 and at 3 p.m. July 1 in historic Holmberg Hall in the Reynolds Performing Arts Center in the OU Arts District.
Choreography will be by Mary Margaret Holt, director of the OU School of Dance and artistic director of Oklahoma Festival Ballet, Jeremy Lindberg, associate professor of ballet and Austin Hartel, associate professor of modern dance and artistic director of Contemporary Dance Oklahoma, OU’s resident modern dance company.
“Gloriana,” choreographed by Lindberg, will open the program with a fairytale treat of nobles dancing by the river’s edge while a concert is played on royal barges for the monarch. Lindberg said selections from Handel’s Water Music Suite inspired the ballet to be an antique fantasy on the idea of the Royal Jubilee.
A second ballet by Lindberg, “Before Grief Slumbers,” explores the feelings of loss, grief or joy and the perceived moods in nature.
“Le Mistral,” a new ballet choreographed by Holt, was inspired by the winds that sweep down from the Alps and through France each winter. “The winds can be monotonous and frightening in their intensity,” Holt said, “They ultimately cleanse the air and finally bring a soothing calm.”
Hartel will present two new modern dance works, one choreographed to the Ted Nugent song “Stranglehold,” and a second comedic dance involving the elements of earth, wind and water.
“The entire production is a wonderful example of the ways dance can express the depth of the human spirit and its relationship to nature, humor and emotions from pathos to joy,” Holt said.
Ticket prices are $8 for students, $12 for OU faculty/staff and senior adults, and $15 for adults. Reservations can be made by calling the Fine Arts College Ticket Service at (405) 325-4101 from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. The box office is located in the Catlett Music Center, 500 West Boyd. The Donald W. Reynolds Performing Arts Center is located on the OU Norman campus at 560 Parrington Oval. Seating is limited and reservations are strongly encouraged. For accommodations on the basis of disability, please call (405) 325-4101.
The University of Oklahoma’s program in dance was founded in 1963 by Yvonne Chouteau and Miguel Terekhov, former principal dancers with Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. What had been a department became the School of Dance in 1998, with Mary Margaret Holt as Director. Undergraduate and graduate dance majors, along with general education students, total approximately 1000 enrollees in dance classes per semester. The School of Dance’s state-of-the-art facility in the Donald W. Reynolds Performing Arts Center was completed in 2005.