News Release

Southeastern presents 'Dance for Thought' April 19

Contact: Tonya Lowentritt


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(1) Diamond Williams and Martie Fellom (2) A scene from the dance-for-film piece "Break"

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(1) SOUTHEASTERN DANCE -- Southeastern dance professor Martie Fellom, right, works with student choreographer Diamond Williams on “Active Antagonism,” one of four student works to be performed at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts April 19 as part of Fellom’s production “Dance for Thought.”


(2) DANCE FOR THE CAMERA -- “Break,” a film by Shona McCullagh of New Zealand, is one of six international dance shorts that will be featured in “Dance for Thought” at Southeastern Louisiana University’s Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts April 19. The event will feature six films by artists from across the globe and dances by four Southeastern student choreographers.

     HAMMOND – Southeastern Louisiana University dance professor Martie Fellom will present “Dance for Thought,” a compilation of six “Dance for the Camera” shorts and four live dance pieces, April 19 at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts. 

     The free 7:30 p.m. program will feature films by artists from Australia, France, New Zealand, and the United States, as well as performances showcasing the choreography of four Southeastern students.          

     “These students have a passion for choreography and dance and merely need the opportunity,” said Fellom.  “They are very excited to showcase their choreography at the Columbia Theatre.”  

     Alaina Champagne of Slidell will present “Decisions,” a piece about struggling with decisions in life. “Decisions” features Champagne, Amanda Blanchard of New Orleans, Elise McCan of Slidell, Marlie Ventress of Baton Rouge, Sharon Miller of Zachary, and Trisha Rigsby of Springfield.

     Ericka Johnson, a sophomore majoring in mass communication and journalism with a minor in dance, will present “Still a Working Title.”  Featuring four dancers, the piece is about perfection.  Sharon Miller of Zachary, April Robertson of Amite, and Elizabeth Duhon and Tiffany White of Baton Rouge are the dancers highlighted in the piece.

     “Noj Chicanery,” a piece that explores the four stages of grief, is being presented by student choreographer Daphne Lamendola of Baton Rouge. In addition to Lamendola, dancers featured in the piece are Megan Guillot of Hammond, Alaina Champagne and Tiffany White.

     “Active Antagonism” by Diamond Williams of Baton Rouge is a piece about the effects of the war on the world around us. Featured dancers are Tiffany White; Samantha Givens, Mahajjah James, Elizabeth Duhon, Ashley Ward, and Kyra Wright, all of Baton Rouge; Yani Jackson of Hahnville; Emily Benfatti of Slidell; Tricia Rigsby of Springfield; Amanda Blanchard of Metairie; and Greyhisha Lewis of New Orleans.

     Southeastern dance students will soon have the opportunity to produce works for the digital video environment through a new course, Dance 404, choreography for the camera. Meanwhile, “Dance for Thought” will present six “Dance for the Camera” shorts made specifically for film presentation:

     ▪  “Babel” by American choreographer Peter Sparling, a former member of Martha Graham Dance Company. Mirroring the voices in Arvo Part’s score, Sparling’s solo reveals four physical personalities.  The seven-minute piece transcends boundaries of gender and character, while charting a man’s struggle to embody his own metamorphosis.

     ▪ “Will Time Tell?”, a 13-minute piece by Sue Healey of Australia. Funded by Asia Link, OZCO, this short plays with rhythms and counter rhythms. This meditative, playful piece was shot in Japan and gives a sense of the outsider’s experience.

     ▪ “Caught in Paint,” a presentation of painter Rita Blitt, choreographer David Parsons and photographer Lois Greenfield. A union of paint, dance and photography, the six-minute short has been shown at more than 60 film festivals nationally and has won seven awards.

     ▪ “Bittersweet,” a film by dancer/choreographer/director David Rousseve of the United States. The 15-minute piece from the maker of the award winning “Pull Your Head to the Moon” explores the relationships of three women of color to their husbands, lovers, and to one another. The film is an alternatively lyrical and violent look at race and gender politics. 

     ▪ “Break” by Shona McCullagh of New Zealand. A moving tribute to a family’s dynamic from the perspective of a young boy that plays inventively with rhythm and narrative. The 14-minute film is from the director of the popular dance short “Fly” and the choreographer for “King Kong” and “The Lion, Witch, and the Wardrobe.”

     ▪ “Black Spring” by Benoit Dervaux. Choreographed by Heddy Maalen, produced by Heure d’Ete and featuring dancers from Compagnie Ivoire, “Black Spring” challenges Western notions of African bodies in movement.  The dance is interspersed with scenes of contemporary life in Africa which serve to heighten awareness of the social and political sensitivities inherent in modern African dance.

     “Dance for the Camera,” is funded by the Lyceum Arts and Lectures Committee at Southeastern and is also made possible through Dance Film Association’s touring program sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts, the members of Dance Film Association, and the Susan Braun Trust. 

     For additional information, contact Fellom at 985-549-2133.

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