In 1969, Tharp offered one of her first dance classes to students at the American Dance Festival. Since then, hundreds of dancers have taken master classes, attended lecture/demonstrations or learned works from Tharp's repertory, which are frequently taught in universities. Treefrog in Stonehenge brings Tharp's endeavors in dance education full circle: it is her first work choreographed for students and premiered at the American Dance Festival.
David Kahne composed and recorded a constantly evolving soundscape that shifts in mood, rhythm and style in close coordination with the choreography. The dance combines phrases from two new technique classes - "Treefrog" and "Stonehenge" - with elements sampled from her early works. In one section, a group of dancers enters with a series of quick leaps and rolls while putting on and removing jackets, a combination of dance and pedestrian action that was first presented in Dancing in the Streets…(1969)
The piece highlights both the individual dancers' strengths and personality as well as the sense of community that is fostered in a dance class.
Hartung and Doherty in performance. ©Twyla Tharp Photo by Grant Halverson
Dye and Anderson perform. ©Twyla Tharp Photo by Grant Halverson
Members of the cast in performance. ©Twyla Tharp
Speetjens and cast members in rehearsal. ©Melissa Key
Morrison with members of the cast in rehearsal. ©Melissa Key
Additional performance on July 27, 2013
Additional performances on April 26 (mat & eve).