School of Music, Theatre and Dance at the University of Michigan


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MFA Grad Performance: Tales of a Living Past, Department of Dance

March 31
8:00 pm

Free - Tickets Required

Tickets are free, available one hour before the performance.

The Department of Dance at the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre, and Dance presents Tales of a Living Past, with choreography by Gloria Ahlijah, Jason Reese C., Sreya Muthukumar, and Kara Roseborough.

In Jason Reese C’s work This House Will Burn Down, we fall into a surreal landscape that cradles and confines a scene from a monotonous marriage. The space feels like a barren home, a cathedral and a morgue all in one. There is a great distance between the bodies, what they do, what they say, how they interact. And we watch as the underbelly of this relationship unfolds through its inevitable decay. 

The Absence of______,  a dance piece by Gloria Ahlijah, is driven by an in-depth exploration of silence, gaze, and breath as elements of fear, power, and strength. The compositional contrast and inexistent music create discomfort and tension among performers and audience, which prompts the performers to build a connection with their inner being while tapping into their internal sound.

Br’er, created by Kara Roseborough is a solo performance that dives into the emergence and evolution of folk character Br’er Rabbit within the culture and oral traditions of enslaved Black Americans in the antebellum American south. Kara conveys Br’er’s journey through self-awareness and reclamation of power and identity.

Set in Stone is an experimental work by Sreya Muthukumar that explores the mysteries surrounding the figure of the ‘apsara’, or celestial nymph, in Indian mythology. What is to be sensual? What is to be leisurely? And what happens to the apsara when no one is watching her? This piece brings together elements of Indian Classical dance, modern dance vocabularies, and an eclectic sound score, in order to explore, uncover, and question the shadow these figures cast upon the modern women of today. 

Kara Roseborough and Sreya Muthukumar explore the intersections of two classical dance forms, Ballet and Bharatanatyam, in their shared creation, Classic. This piece delves into the tensions, joys, and discoveries of the convergent and divergent points of these practices.