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Newly branded Boulder Contemporary Dance Festival bringing multifaceted Colorado groups to Dairy Arts Center

Saturday's event will showcase works by eight Colorado-based modern dance companies

Cindy Brandle Dance Company performs “A World On Fire” in April 2019 at the Dairy Arts Center. On Saturday, Brandle will present the Boulder Contemporary Dance Festival, at the Dairy’s Gordon Gamm Theater, where members of eight of Colorado’s most innovative modern dance companies will perform.
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In 2017, Boulder-based creative Cindy Brandle rented out the Dairy’s Gordon Gamm Theater to craft a show that would highlight choreographic works created by her company members. Inspired by the Front Range’s endless array of diverse talent, she invited other organizations and independent artists to share the stage.

Operating under the title Cindy Brandle Dance Company and Friends, she continued the tradition into 2018, but this year is relaunching the event into an evening that will feature performances by eight of the state’s inventive modern dance companies.

3rd Law Dance/Theater Company will perform a piece from its production “The Sea” at Saturday’s Boulder Contemporary Dance Festival.

“I had a desire for the name to reflect my true intention, which is to shine a light on the amazing dance community, not only in Boulder, but throughout Colorado,” Brandle said. “So, the Boulder Contemporary Dance Festival was born.”

On Saturday, in addition to performances by Cindy Brandle Dance Company, attendees can take in the innovative work from members of Boulder’s 3rd Law Dance /Theater, Briah Danse Co. and Nosilla Dance Project, Denver’s  Moraporvida Contemporary Dance,and Nu-World Contemporary Danse Theatre, Broomfield’s Industrial Dance Alliance and Fort Collins’ Impact Dance Company.

“I modeled it somewhat after a festival I was a part of in Chicago called, ‘The Other Dance Festival,’” Brandle said. “ODF was a beautiful festival that pulled in some of the most talented experimental and exciting dance artists in Chicago and I wanted to do the same here in Colorado. I didn’t just want to be a part of a community— I wanted to help build it.”

Members of Broomfield-based Industrial Dance Alliance will perform at Saturday’s Boulder Contemporary Dance Festival at the Dairy’s Gordon Gamm Theater.

Pieces of prior works and never-before-seen components of evolving productions will be presented at the event Saturday in a production that will be “filled with many choreographic voices,” Brandle said.

“The beauty of this is a diverse range of pieces,” Brandle said. “We have works that are serious in nature, some that are politically charged, some that are lighthearted or dances that are just beautifully movement-driven pieces.”

In September, the Industrial Dance Alliance performed “Homeostasis,” an evening-length concert that explored the theme of finding balance through instability.

“I’m proud of the amount of sheer talent there is here in Boulder,” Brandle said. “Since I moved from Chicago to Boulder in 2010, I’ve witnessed a growth in the number of dance artists and dancemakers. There is a lot of really good work here.”

The Nu-World Contemporary Danse Theatre, that will also take the stage Saturday, incorporated the work of one of the 20th century’s most renowned writers in a prior production titled “From Jimmy to America: An Ode to James Baldwin” — a piece that examined race and identity in the U.S.

“The thing I love the most about being part of the Boulder Contemporary Dance Fest is having the opportunity to share the stage with other companies and see all the different kind of work artists are creating in our community,” said Katie Elliott, artistic co-director of 3rd Law Dance/Theater.

Wanting to present a piece that illuminates the collaborative process between musician and dancer, 3rd Law’s composer Paul Fowler will perform live and sing alongside a single dancer, creating an intimate vignette of sound and motion. Fowler will also use gathered sounds that are sampled and looped in real time on his computer.

The performance, titled “Lowlands,” is an excerpt from the company’s previous production “The Sea.”

“In this portion, we investigated themes around migration and immigration,” Elliott said.

And 3rd Law is never one to shy away from complex subject matter and layered themes. Last November, the group awed audiences with its tech-inspired “Singularity,” that explored both the positives and negatives of living in a cyber-saturated world.

In addition to bringing together a tribe of different dancers pushing the boundaries when it comes to the art form, Brandle said she also sees Saturday’s festival as a chance to offer audiences a preview of what her company has planned for next year.

Members of Briah Danse will perform this Saturday at the Boulder Contemporary Dance Festival.

This weekend, the Cindy Brandle Dance Company will premiere a work titled “That Which Remains.” The seven-minute performance will eventually be a section in the company’s evening-length concert “From The Ashes,” which will be performed in its entirety in 2020.

“Essentially, we are currently exploring how we rise from a multitude of issues plaguing our world,” Brandle said.

It’s Brandle’s hope that Boulder Contemporary Dance Festival will continue to be a yearly event.

“The moment I discovered modern dance as an art form, I fell deeply in love,” Brandle said. “It has been the longest love of my life. I have an appetite for the intellectual nature of modern dance, as it requires one to think deeply, dig deeply and feel deeply.”

After this weekend’s festival wraps, Brandle and crew will dive right into rehearsals for its upcoming work “From the Ashes,” scheduled for Feb. 7-9 at Gordon Gamm Theater in the Dairy, she said. The company plans to collaborate with local spoken word artists to add yet another component to its intricate show.

“I’d love to tour with the company,” Brandle said. “That would be a bucket list item. But until then, we’re happy sharing our world views with some kick-ass dancing right here in the Front Range.”


If you go

What: Boulder Contemporary Dance Festival

When: 7:30 p.m. Saturday

Where: Dairy Arts Center’s Gordon Gamm Theater, 2590 Walnut St., Boulder

Cost: $13-$30

More info: thedairy.org/event/cindy-brandle-dance-company

 

 

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