Photo by Tom Daly: Theory choreographed by Luke Williams. Dancers (l-r) Kiana Pilson, Bryce Cuthriell, and Carolyn Diamond.
Mar 28, 2019

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA- March 19 – The Dance Program of the Department of Drama at the University of Virginia presents its Spring Dance Concert on March 28 – 30 at 8:00 p.m. in the Ruth Caplin Theatre. The spring concert will feature the works of faculty, students, and two guest choreographers for an evening of dance that explores multiple perspectives and themes through the practice of performance.

The Dance Program is pleased to present the work of guest artists Shandoah Goldman and Emily Wright, whose residencies were made possible by the Miller Arts Scholars. Goldman is the founder of Carte Blanche Performance. Her collaborative choreographic practice fuses dance with location, sound, video, theatre, and brands. Her new piece I’m really well, set on a cast of 7 students, is inspired by the structure of a three-ring circus and explores human behavior related to winning and losing and all the movements in between. Goldman holds an M.A. from London Contemporary Dance School and her choreographic work has spanned Montreal, London, and New York City, where her work has been presented in site-specific locations such as the Flatiron Building and The High Line.

In the making of Penumbra No. 1, Emily Wright employed approaches from improvisational and collaborative dance-making strategies with her 5 student dancers. The work explores the ways dance performance can create and extend movement patterns that contribute to ongoing, interpersonal transformation. Wright has an M.F.A. in Performance & Choreography from Arizona State University and a Ph.D. in Dance Studies from Texas Woman’s University. Her work has been presented at numerous national and international conferences including the Dance Studies Association and the World Dance Alliance. She is the author of the forthcoming book Dancing to Transform (Intellect Press).

Fourth-year Kinesiology Major, Deanna Joi Lewis’ explores issues of racial inequity and struggle through movement, music, and text. Lewis states that her piece “Black Progression is a conversation about how African-American women internally struggle with the disparities that are unjustly directed toward them.” Vale Between Us is Elizabeth Culbertson’s short dance film in which the dancer explores both the masculine and feminine sides within her. Culbertson is a fourth-year Studio Art major and this dance film, one of her first, was screened in the 40North Dance Film Festival in San Diego, CA (2018).

Associate Professor and Artistic Director of Dance, Kim Brooks Mata, will present her dance film dwell, which has been screened at the Greensboro Dance Film Festival (2018), the Utah Dance Film Festival (2019), and forthcoming (April 2019) at the ScreenDance Festival in Stockholm, Sweden. The piece was shot during the Experimental Film Virginia intensive in Cape Charles, Virginia last summer and seeks to explore what it means to belong, to reside, to feel at home. The piece asks are these concepts tied to our individual bodies, other people, places, objects, a combination?

In addition to the highlighted works, six more undergraduate students created original pieces for this concert. From Rachel Good’s Prosperina inspired by images and structures of Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s famous Baroque sculptures to Meghan Walther’s The Summit, which examines “the human body’s athleticism and limits,” each student has found unique ways to investigate, develop, and manifest their artistic voices in collaboration with multiple dancers through the creative process.

Tickets for the Spring Dance Concert can be purchased online at, by calling 434-924-3376 or in person at the UVA Arts Box Office, located in the lobby of the UVA Drama Building, open Monday through Friday from noon until 5:00 p.m. Tickets are $7 for adults, $6 for seniors, UVA Faculty/Staff, and UVA Alumni members, and $5 for students. Full-time UVA students may receive one free ticket if reserved at least 24 hours in advance of their desired performance date.

Free parking on performance nights is available in the Culbreth Road Parking Garage, located next to the Drama Building.