CULTURE

Site-specific dance show

An original, site-specific performance, designed by award-winning choreographer Carol Brown and performance designer Dorita Hannah, will be staged at the Isadora and Raymond Duncan Dance Research Center. «Her Topia» – created especially for this venue, the former Athens residence of dance icon Isadora Duncan – blends dance with music and video art and creates a bridge between Greek and foreign artists and the local community. Initially scheduled to be performed at 7 p.m. today and tomorrow, a third show has been added at 9 p.m. this evening due to popular demand. The performance is the culmination of a project between Carol Brown, Dorita Hannah, 14 dancers (selected by Brown last June) and other artists and has the form of a dialogue, as it spreads out from the center to the neighborhood. At yesterday’s press conference, Carol Brown explained that the name of the performance, «Her Topia,» is derived from «heterotopia» and is a reference to a space of multiple possibilities and to multiculturalism. «I first visited the center in 2003, to run a workshop. I was struck by the significance of the place, both locally and globally,» said Brown, adding that it was one of the first buildings to accommodate the needs of modern dance. «The story of Isadora Duncan is well known, but the place is not so visible. We want the event to highlight the beauty and power of the location.» Brown described the performance as a journey across time, which aims at recomposing the traces of the past and she expressed her joy at working with local artists. «Fostering new relationships with artists here was very special, in many ways,» she said. Brown, founder of Carol Brown Dances along with composer Russell Scoones, specializes in blending dance with other art forms. Her numerous distinctions include a Jerwood Award for Choreography in 1999, a Lisa Ullman Travel Scholarship in 1998 and an AHRB Research Fellowship in the Creative and Performing Arts (2002-4). «What I found interesting about the space [the Duncan Center] was the idea behind it, that there is a special place to express yourself, to let the body express itself,» said Dorita Hannah, adding that the title of the performance is a reference to a «floating world of possibilities.» Hannah explores the relationship between space and performance; she is an architect, a scenographer and an associate professor of design at Massey University’s College of Design Fine Arts and Music. The performance, under the auspices of the Municipality of Vyronas, is a joint production of the British Council and the Duncan Center, which promotes Isadora Duncan’s humanistic approach and functions as a dance school and a center of research. This is the British Council’s second dance production this year, after Nigel Chanock and Constantinos Rigos’s «Megla» last spring. «We don’t want to just invite foreign artists here. We want to promote the collaboration between Greek and British artists and create original works with young artists,» said Isidora Papadrakaki, head of creativity and society at the British Council. «Both Nigel Charnock and Carol Brown push the boundaries of dance and Brown is unique at exploring space in relation to dance.» The Duncan Center is situated at Chryssafis & Dikaiarhou, Vyronas. Admission is free, but due to limited seating call 210.762.1234/1164 for reservations.