– by Stephanie Smith (Music MFA 11)
Hourglass, a live music and dance “community event,” came to CalArts last Thursday night (Sept. 16), and featured the music of the Robin Cox Ensemble and improvisational audience participation, guided by Stephanie Nugent.
The “dance experience” invited audience members to participate in the immersive performance by contributing spontaneous physical movement to a fixed musical score. Encouraged to do what they wanted, members of the audience observed, listened, and actively participated in the improvisational dance.
The hour of spontaneity and movement was received with great enthusiasm by both observers and participants, who commented on Facebook and YouTube:
- “It’s true, art can change the world and you two [Nugent and Cox] just did. Absolutely spellbinding evening of dance, music, energy and breath. WOW, Thanks!” –CalArts graduate student.
- “words and punctuation cannot express anything i am feeling right now. I just- i can’t. ♥ :’]” –CalArts dance student
- “Really phenomenal performance! The energy was palpable and the music went through so many lovely, different moods moving effortlessly through time without feeling linear at all. You guys were all really awesome.” –non-CalArts attendee
The video posted above is from the close of the Hourglass performance. The other parts can be found on the Robin Cox’s Ensemble’s YouTube page. Below are photos captured at the event by Institute Photographer Steve Gunther.