Student choreographers get high marks

April 29, 1991|By J. L. Conklin

Goucher College presented its annual spring concert this weekend with an auspicious showcase of dances created by students and guest artists Violette Verdy and Pat Graney.

The five works choreographed by the students were well performed, well crafted and displayed a sophisticated range of choreographic interests.

The opening quintet, "Unspoken Solitude" by Tara Trevorrow, with its moving images of lamentation and loss was contrasted by Nina Wolf'slight-hearted "The Connection," which was flavored with thigh-slapping humor and quirky fashion poses. "Quest," by Kirsten Etnoyer, was filled with the shimmering patterns of its eight dancers and a patina of Graham technique. "Kindred Spirits," a trio by Jayme Kay Klinger, brimmed with lovely and lyrical phrasing. The highly theatrical "Last Laugh," by Amy Marshall, had a wonderful interplay between the six dancers and its Sam Shepard text but was overstated and overworked.

Ms. Verdy's two ballets were "Stewart Concerto," a bright contemporary Balanchine-inspired work for 11 dancers set to music by Louis Stewart, and "A Bicentennial Tribute to Mozart," a classical work that featured Jill O'Donnell from Towson State University, Richard Rogers, formerly of the Royal Ballet of Flanders, and Goucher student Julia Rosset. The students showed strong technical training and the ability to work in both contemporary and classical modes.

"Pagan Love Song" by Pat Graney was really three works in one. Each section -- a sunny first, an introspective second and a muscular third -- could stand on its own. Even so, this kitschy and enjoyable work could benefit from some judicious pruning.

Overall there was a definite improvement from past student concerts. Whether this is a result of the quality of talent of the young choreographers or the general progress of the college's instruction is hard to discern. Whatever the reason, the whole evening was propitious both choreographically and technically.

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