Dance of the Ancestors

Dance of the Ancestors excerpt

photo credit: Scott Lipiec

photo credit: Scott Lipiec

Through lineage, stories swell. 

In 1911, a young Jewish girl escapes Minsk, embarking on a treacherous trip to the New World. As her life evolves, dancers morph to form the more tangible structures of her memory and imagination: a boat, a sewing machine, a piano, a chorus line of paper dolls, a photograph. Dance of the Ancestors is a dance-theater production. Title cards redolent of early cinema act as narrator, while a family chronicleunfurls.  From Klezmer of the Old World to the 1930s American chorus line, this poignant, playfully surreal journey encapsulates the hardship, humor, and devotion of a family historyspanningpersecution,The Great Depression, sweat shops, motherhood, love, rumor, and daydreams.Wearing the portraits of generations past, 12 performers travel through time via dancing vignettes. Biography meets magical realism, as the inner and outer worlds of anecdotes passed through generations are danced to life.


Northeast ACDA Conference (2019)

SUNY Brockport, NY

WSU 90th Anniversary December Dance Concert (2018)

Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts. Detroit, MI

Noel Night (2018)

Maggie Allesee Theater. Detroit, MI


ACDA gala performance selection. SUNY Brockport, NY 

Choreography: Leah O’Donnell

Performers: Kaylee Adair, Amanda Benjey, Olivia Bonich, Natalie Cantalino (2018), Taylor Craft, Racquel Dunneback, Kayla Gonzalez, Emily Hooper, Joey Mattar, Jessica Mossner, Maddy Petz (2018), Jayda Powell, Micah Bolden (2019), Brooklyn Parks (2019)