"Cast-Based Approach to Choreography"

By: Joan Van Dyke   Carole Tina Lewis  

The "Cast-Based Approach to Choreography" uses the collaborative, creative process, to inspire the audience while focusing on the empowerment of the cast members. This process serves as a means of embodying timeless gender and societal issues while providing contemporary and alternative solutions using dance as an avenue to alert and therefore empower the cast and audience members of the current developmental traps in today’s society. “The Lena and Verna”, performance project will be the fourth in a series of ballets to be created using this process. The ballet is based on research which explores the Educational and Career Goals of Anabaptist Communities of Western Pennsylvania. As Anabaptist communities only require education up to the eighth grade. Prior to setting the choreography for each scene, the cast (primarily females) will be briefed on the scene including historical references, characters, and psychological implications and given a chance to respond. The process allows the female voice to resonant and become an integral part of theade level, it is unknown whether there is a desire within the communities to pursue more education or career training particularly for women. This approach educates its projected audience as well as a primarily female cast on contemporary societal issues among the Anabaptist and “English” communities. The project is steeply based in the historically rich collaborative nature of ballet while adding a contemporary spin to the inspiration/motivation for the performance.

Community, Education,Policy, Diversity, Gender, Well Being, Identity, Creativity, Authenticity, Healing
The Arts in Social, Political, and Community Life
Paper Presentation in a Themed Session

Joan Van Dyke

Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Carole Tina Lewis

Licensed Pshchologist, Private Practice, United States
United States