TIMARA Professor Peter Swendsen will present a handful of collaborative performances with choreographers over the month of March. Swendsen states, “collaborations with choreographers represent a large part of my creative work over the last twenty years, starting with projects I did as an undergrad at Oberlin. By now, I’ve made nearly 50 scores for dance, and working with dance is one of my very favorite things. This confluence of dance events in March is a fun combination of new projects and old, long-time collaborators and new ones.”

The first performance took place on March 8th at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage. Swendsen shared his piece coldness and lightness, in collaboration with Ashley Thorndike. Swendsen speaks about his collaborative history with Thorndike, and his piece: “Ashley and I have been working together since 2003. Along with a third collaborator, Dinah Gray, we co-directed a small dance company in Charlottesville for several years, during which time we made many pieces together. A shorter version of coldness and lightness was first performed in Oberlin in 2009. We premiered the evening-length version in Washington DC in the fall of 2017, which led to this performance at the Kennedy Center. As Ashley says, this pieces is a portrait of the moment at which the ground cracks—a sudden destabilization of an icy landscape.” You can find more information about coldness and lightness here.

On March 22nd, at 7 and 9pm, at the Pilgrim Church in Cleveland, Peter Swendsen, Dana Jessen and NYC-based Pam Tanowitz Dance will share five small dances for Cleveland. “The music for these pieces comes largely from Dana Jessen’s album, Carve, which includes a piece Dana and I made together called Fireflies in Winter. Dana and I perform live with a combined cast of dancers from NYC-based Pam Tanowitz Dance and Cleveland-based The Movement Project in a beautiful old church in the Tremont neighborhood of Cleveland.”

On March 22nd and 23rd, at The Theatre at Gibney (in NYC) Swendsen showcased his collaborative work LUNA. Swendsen speaks about LUNA and his collaborations: “David Shimotakahara and I made LUNA in 2013. It’s one of four pieces I’ve made for GroundWorks, and last fall it was revived for a performance at Playhouse Square in Cleveland. There are many connections between GroundWorks and Gibney Dance in NYC, where the performance will take place. Chief among them is another long-time collaborator of mine, Amy Miller, who is the Senior Company Director and Gibney, and with whom I have performed there several times prior. LUNA explores the nature of desire and its deeply held and often opposing motivations. “These polarities developed into a series of physical relationships that reveal many facets in a cycle of experience,” writes my collaborator, David Shimotakahara. “That cycle is like the moon, as primal and unknowable as it is familiar.” – KR