You are invited to The End of Sisyphus, a modern dance MFA thesis concert created by choreographer Nichele Van Portfleet in collaboration with the incredibles: Natalie Border, Lyndi Coles, Brian Gerke, E'lise Marie Jumes, and Tyler Orcutt. More about the performers here.
DECEMBER 7: 7:30
DECEMBER 8: 2:30 + 7:30
FREE! No late seating and seating is limited. Reserve tickets early! Click here.
Tickets available at the door until the house is full.
Marriott Center for Dance
Studio Theatre 240
University of Utah
330 1500 E, Salt Lake City, UT 84112
Cash donations will be accepted at the door to support the dancers, all of whom have dedicated an incredible amount of time and artistry to this work. We are grateful for anything you are able to give!
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The End of Sisyphus is a choreographic meditation about life and about death. The work emerged from questions about our most basic human motivations. Although all animals are driven by a need to survive (either literally or through their offspring), humans alone seem to have the unique understanding of their own mortality. The fear of dying has historically led people to seek methods for staving off death, whether through fame or legacy, a dedication to preparing for an afterlife, searching for a magical wellspring, or through the investment in mind-preserving technology.
In my research, these pursuits of immortality have naturally led me to question the treatment of the body, in dance and in society at large, as it is our corporeal evidence that someday our lives will end. For many this means ignoring and neglecting the body in service to the mind. For some it means preserving the body as long as possible, holding the evidence of aging at bay. While strolling through my research I ran into Sisyphus, an old man keeping busy by pushing a boulder up a hill, a task made impossible due to the fact that the boulder kept sliding its way back down again. In a severely truncated version of the myth of Sisyphus, the story begins when a man attempts to cheat death, after which the gods cruelly punish him to a lifetime of this futile work upon a hill.
What is your boulder? Does your boulder serve you? What if you left your boulder behind?
I am beyond grateful to the dancers for joining me on this journey to physically investigate the themes that have arisen through this research over the past 7 months, including ideas of control, power, fragility, fate, denial, resistance, and impermanence. Thank you to Peter C. Larsen for churning the technical wheels with love, to Hannah Fischer for helping me power through the hidden work behind producing, and to my committee members, Satu, Daniel, and Christine, for your generosity throughout my process.
I can't wait to share the fleeting results of a shit ton of work with you. Please join us!
Image by MotionVivid
Marketing designs by Molly Powers