10 Minutes Max: For 600 seconds, anything goes
The weekend forecast calls for an umbrella – Dance Umbrella, that is, and its annual showcase of short performance works
This time of year, come rain or shine, you can always use an umbrella, and this weekend there's one everybody in Austin should use: the Dance Umbrella. That's because this longtime arts presenter is offering its annual showcase of Central Texas' emerging dancers and choreographers, 10 Minutes Max. Fifteen choreographers, 39 performers, and more than a few musicians will present original dance works no longer than – you guessed it – 10 minutes. Here's an introduction to three of the participants providing the eclectic shade for your hot summer night.
Emily Torgerson, choreographer. Background: Grew up dancing in San Antonio, attended Indiana University on a dance scholarship, and danced for two years with the Joffrey Ballet. This Year's Piece: A Perfect Distraction, an excerpt of a longer multimedia piece performed recently by Metamorphosis Dance Ensemble, of which Shaw is executive director. Why She Finds 10 Minutes Max Indispensable: "It's a great venue for dancers to show new creative work and support one another as part of the dance community. It's also an important opportunity for raising awareness of dance in Austin."
Khoi Le, dancer/choreographer. Background: Took dancing as a physical-education credit at Texas A&M and loved it, attended Austin Community College, danced for Allison Orr and Darla Johnson, danced for Sharir+Bustamante Danceworks, now dances for Blue Lapis Light, and is going to New York to study at the Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance. This Year's Piece: The Unedited Me, about how others perceive the roles we play. Why He Dances: "I'm trying to make dance appealing to men as well as women. I believe that dance can and should be beautiful and masculine. I love taking a concept that I feel emotionally connected to and exploring that. I don't like to do things just because they look pretty. There is a reason for every movement."
Vivian L. Mancebo, dancer/choreographer. Background: Dancing since she was a little girl; has taken ballet, jazz, belly dancing, tap, and classical Indian dance. This Year's Piece: A two-parter inspired by the Virginia Tech massacre: Angst: Everything Is (Not) Fine, followed by Hope: Passe le Temps. Why She Finds 10 Minutes Max Indispensable: "I have a hard time being in a group. I'm very much a solo performer, so there's really no venue for me. But I think I found it with 10 Minutes Max because anything goes. It's so open, and I feel no limits whatsoever. That's how I dance. This is my passion. It's the one thing I really adore doing."
Dance Umbrella will present 10 Minutes Max Friday and Saturday, Aug. 24 and 25, 8pm, in the Boyd Vance Theatre of the George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center, 1165 Angelina. For more information, call 450-0456 or visit www.danceumbrella.com.