Last but not least, we are pleased to have first-time Trolley Dances choreographer Michael Mizerany contribute to our blog! Michael making a name for himself as both a contemporary and musical theater choreographer. We are looking forward to seeing how his first site-specific dance turns out!
What is your past experience with Trolley Dances?
I’ve seen Trolley Dances many times and have always enjoyed it. I am very excited to be part of it this year.
What is it like to make your first site-specific dance?
It is both very exciting and intimidating. Fortunately, I am setting my new work on the San Diego Dance Theater company members and they have been very helpful during the process. Jean has also been invaluable in her guidance and encouragement. Before I started, I did tons of research of how to approach my first site-specific work. Some of the best advice I received was to make the site part of the dance, and not to make the dance about the site.
How did you pick your a Trolley Dances site?
Jean, Blythe, grace and I went on our own Trolley Dance tour to pick out sites. The Clock Tower at 12th & Imperial really resonated with me. The structure itself is very evocative and I love all the levels and surfaces there are to experiment with choreographically. I also love that, in the morning, the structure is in the shade. In the afternoon, the structure is in the sunlight. It changes how the viewer sees the dance. It is a totally different experience.
How has the site informed your dance?
The structure itself reminds me of a house or a secluded shelter. When the dancers are outside the structure there is freedom, community and energy. Inside the shelter, there is safety but a longing to experience what is going on outside. There are several moments when the dancers inside the shelter construct their own mini-structures only to be coaxed from their rigid and regimented configurations into something more expansive and intimate. And above it all, the clock at that top of the tower ticks away. Our time is finite. No time for complacency.
What would you like the audience to know about your Trolley Dance?
If we gave our dances titles, I would call mine Cabin Fever. It’s about getting rid of the rigid confines, moving outside of our comfort zones and experiencing something new and different. Well, very similar to my experience making a new site specific work for Trolley Dances!