RDT presents Embark

October 4-6, 2012
Jeanne Wagner Theatre
Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center
Jeanne Wagner Theatre 7:30 pm

October 4 | Community Night - Tickets $20* ($15 seniors/students)
October 5-6| Tickets $30 in advance* ($15 seniors/students)
Tickets available through ArtTix | 801-355-ARTS | www.artTix.org
*Tickets will increase by $5 on the night of the performance.


Pre-Concert Lecture with Linda Smith & Barton Poulson:
October 5-6 | 7:00 pm
FREE of charge
Rose Room of the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center



How to Pass, Kick, Fall & Run (1965) by Merce Cunningham
Accompaniment by John Cage, Performed live by Bill Allred & Ricklen Nobis

A lively, playful, athletic dance for 9 dancers, performed to a sound-score created by John Cage. The choreography keeps the dancers constantly in motion, never staying in a given place for very long, with two or three things simultaneously occurring on stage at all times.

Bill Allred of X96's Radio from Hell and Ricklen Nobis of RDT will deliver the John Cage narrated sound-score live on stage, alongside the dancers. Cage presents a string of stories and anecdotes, a mix of quirky poetry, Zen precepts and family history guaranteed to amuse.With the elements of chance and choice given to the narrators, the narration, and therefore the composition as a whole will be different each time it is performed. “The effect,” Cunningham once said, “was a bit like watching a playground full of children, with these two crones in the corner talking about things that were completely irrelevant.” 


RDT performing Cunningham's "Scramble" in 2011

8 Seconds of Fame (2012) by the RDT Dancers

RDT embarked on a new project—creating choreography by incorporating movement phrases donated by the community. During the Utah Arts Festival, RDT invited people to contribute EIGHT SECONDS of movement to be put into a “movement bank.” Anyone – regardless of age or ability – was invited to participate and share movement of any sort: pedestrian actions, gestures, shapes, or dance-moves that are part of their own movement language.’ As Merce Cunningham would have suggested, “human movement has limitless possibilities.”

RDT believes this innovative approach to audience engagement is a good way to remove a lot of the misperceived and esoteric mystery that often is associated with modern dance and will give audiences a greater sense of ownership in the larger sense of the creative experience.

RDT filmed 8 second movement contributions at
the Utah Arts Festival.


Hello World (2012) by Jacque Lynn Bell & Barton Poulson

Hello World is an interdisciplinary, multimedia collaboration between a modern dance choreographer – Jacque Bell – and a social psychologist/data scientist – Barton Poulson. It uses dance and digital imagery to create visual and kinesthetic order and disorder."Hello World" is a play on internal drives and external perceptions.

The phrase "Hello World" comes from computer programming. When a person is learning to work with a new programming language, the first thing they learn is how to write a program in that language that will make the computer write "Hello World." This tradition dates back to 1974.


Hello World features digital imagery created from the dancers' movement.

Selected works by Michio Ito

RDT salutes the revolutionary vision of Michio Ito (1896-1961). Ito fused Eastern and Western music, poetry, and drama to create universal choreographies that have left a footprint in modern dance history. He was celebrated as one of a boundary-crossing generation that brought about the literary, musical, and artistic breakthroughs of modernism; and the eclectic beginnings of American modern dance.


Michio Ito - Repertory Dance Theatre from RDT on Vimeo.




Merce CunninghamMERCE CUNNINGHAM (1919-2009) was a leader of the American avant-garde throughout his seventy-year career and is considered one of the most important choreographers of our time.  Through much of his life, he was also one of the greatest American dancers. With an artistic career distinguished by constant innovation, Cunningham expanded the frontiers not only of dance, but also of contemporary visual and performing arts. His collaborations with artistic innovators from every creative discipline have yielded an unparalleled body of American dance, music, and visual art.

Of all his collaborations, Cunningham’s work with John Cage, his life partner from the 1940s until Cage’s death in 1992, had the greatest influence on his practice. Together, Cunningham and Cage proposed a number of radical innovations. The most famous and controversial of these concerned the relationship between dance and music, which they concluded may occur in the same time and space, but should be created independently of one another. The two also made extensive use of chance procedures, abandoning not only musical forms, but narrative and other conventional elements of dance composition—such as cause and effect, and climax and anticlimax. For Cunningham the subject of his dances was always dance itself.

Born in Centralia, Washington on April 16, 1919, Cunningham began his professional modern dance career at 20 with a six-year tenure as a soloist in the Martha Graham Dance Company. In 1944 he presented his first solo show and in 1953 formed the Merce Cunningham Dance Company as a forum to explore his groundbreaking ideas. Over the course of his career, Cunningham choreographed more than 150 dances and over 800 “Events.” Dancers who trained with Cunningham and have gone on to form their own companies include Paul Taylor, Trisha Brown, Lucinda Childs, Karole Armitage, Foofwa d’Immobilité, and Jonah Bokaer.          

Cunningham’s lifelong passion for exploration and innovation made him a leader in applying new technologies to the arts. He began investigating dance on film in the 1970s, and choreographed using the computer program DanceForms during the latter part of his career. He explored motion capture technology to create décor for BIPED (1999), and his interest in new media led to the creation of Mondays with Merce (www.merce.org/mondayswithmerce.html). This webcast series provides a never-before-seen look at the Company and Cunningham’s teaching technique with video of advanced technique class, Company rehearsal, archival footage, and interviews with current and former Company members, choreographers, and collaborators.

An active choreographer and mentor to the arts world until his death at the age of 90, Cunningham earned some of the highest honors bestowed in the arts. Among his many awards are the National Medal of Arts (1990) and the MacArthur Fellowship (1985). He also received the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award in 2009, Japan’s Praemium Imperiale in 2005, the British Laurence Olivier Award in 1985, and was named Officier of the Legion d’Honneur in France in 2004. Cunningham’s life and artistic vision have been the subject of four books and three major exhibitions, and his works have been presented by groups including the Ballet of the Paris Opéra, New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theater, White Oak Dance Project, and London’s Rambert Dance Company.

Cunningham passed away in his New York City home on July 26, 2009.  Always forward-thinking, Cunningham developed the precedent-setting Legacy Plan prior to his death to guide his Company and ensure the preservation of his artistic legacy.

LYNNE WIMMER was a professor in the Department of Theater and Dance at the University of South Florida for 27 years where she taught modern dance technique, choreography, kinesiology and Laban Movement Analysis. She retired in the spring of 2010. Lynne received a BFA from the Juilliard School in New York City, an MFA from the University of Utah and is a Certified Laban Movement Analyst. Her professional performance career included nine years as a member of Repertory Dance Theater, and a year and a half with the Ballets Felix Blaska in Paris France, and she directed her own company for
five years. Lynne has received two Fulbright Lecturer awards to teach and choreograph in Mexico and Costa Rica and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and arts councils in Florida, Pennsylvania and Utah.

Her choreography has been performed by Repertory Dance Theater, the Tampa/Colorado Ballet, Moving Current Dance Collective and The Juilliard Dance Ensemble as well as companies in Europe, Costa Rica, Mexico and Canada. Her current research lies in the fields of dance for camera and videography. She has designed video for several choreographers in the Tampa area, has edited three documentaries for Jewish Family Services of Utah and is working on a documentary of Bill T. Jones.

JOHN CAGE(1912-1992) John Cage was born on September 5, 1912 in Los Angeles, California and died in New York City on August 12, 1992. He studied liberal arts atPomona College. Among his composition teachers were Henry Cowell and Arnold Schoenberg. Cage was elected to the American National Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters and received innumerable awards and honors both in the United States and in Europe.

He was commissioned by a great many of the most important performing organizations throughout the world, and maintained a very active schedule. It would be extremely difficult to calculate, let alone critically evaluate, the stimulating effect and ramifications that Cage's work has had on 20th century music and art, for it is clear that the musical developments of our time cannot be understood without taking into account his music and ideas. His invention of the prepared piano and his work with percussion instruments led him to imagine and explore many unique and fascinating ways of structuring the temporal dimension of music. He is universally recognized as the initiator and leading figure in the field of
indeterminate composition by means of chance operations. Arnold Schoenberg said of Cage that he was an "inventor – of genius".



MICHIO ITO (1893 – 1961) Born in 1893 to a progressive Japanese family, Ito studied and performed in Europe and the United States during the flowering of new art in the early 20th century. He was celebrated as one of a boundary-crossing generation that brought about the literary, musical and artistic breakthroughs of modernism; and the eclectic beginnings of
American modern dance.

In 1916 Ito moved to New York where he spent twelve years continuing to develop his own dance technique. His eclectic study led him to develop an approach to dance that was a combination of both “Eastern” and “Western” art. Ito's early salon dances and dance-poems represent a synthesis of Japanese Noh and Kabuki, characteristic gestures drawn from Oriental and Western cultures, and the disciplined musicality of Emile Jaques-Dalcroze. Like his contemporaries, the modern dance forerunners Ruth St. Denis,
Ted Shawn, and Isadora Duncan, he made dances from a broad spectrum of sources rather than adhering to the conventions of classical ballet.

Ito’s technique included ten symbolic gestures of the arms which he compared to the 12 notes on a piano. He used these positions with variations of plane, angle, context and rhythm to present an endless variety of dances. His emphasis was on the distillation of emotion, inner concentration and incisive gesture. The Ito method emphasizes integrating
breathing, developing rhythmic awareness and coordination. It demands focus on expressive intent, whether it is simply a specific quality of movement or a dramatic idea.

Ito’s career in the United States came to an unfortunate end during World War II. Twenty four hours after the attack on Pearl Harbor, he was sent to a Japanese internment camp and later chose repatriation to Japan as part of a prisoner exchange rather than continued imprisonment. After the war, the American Occupation command appointed him head choreographer of the US army run theatre in Tokyo where he supervised production for the American troops. He resided in Tokyo until his death in 1961.

JACQUE LYNN BELL’s choreography, performing, and teaching have taken her throughout the world including the United States, Canada, Sweden, Japan, and the Philippines. She began dancing at the age of three under the instruction of Virginia Tanner and holds an MFA in Modern Dance from the University of Utah. In addition, Jacque is a certified instructor of the Alexander Technique. Jacque was artistic director for the Fairmount Dance Theatre in Cleveland, Ohio, and spent many years in New York City where she was a teaching artist for Lincoln Center Institute for the Performing Arts. While she has taught at dance departments throughout the state she is currently an Associate Adjunct Professor in the Department of Theatre at the University of Utah, where she teaches dance and the Alexander Technique. She and her husband, Bart, who is a Psychology Professor at Utah Valley University, live in Salt Lake City with their three children: Quinn, Zoë, and Talia.

BARTON POULSON is an Associate Professor of Psychology in the Behavioral Science Department at Utah Valley University. He earned his PhD in Social and Personality Psychology at the City University of New York and spent many years studying conflict resolution and teaching statistics and research methodology. To pursue his interest in data visualization, Bart recently spent a year on sabbatical as a freshman student in the University of Utah's Arts Technology Program and, in the process, rediscovered his love for art. He still happily teaches statistics but he, along with his wife, Jacque Bell, and UVU Dance professor Nichole Ortega, has receiVed a Presidential Fellowship at UVU to develop a collection of dance and interactive Technology pieces called "Dance Loops" (uvu.edu/danceloops), which will be performed in 2013. Bart and Jacque live with their three exuberant children – Quinn, Zoë, and Talia – and Coco the Shorkie in Salt Lake City.

BILL ALLRED is a native of Ogden, Utah. He attended public school and Weber State College where he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in theatre. He then went on to Penn State where he did three years work on a Master’s Degree in acting. Bill then pursued a career as an actor, finding work with the Long Beach Repertory Company; the State Theatre of Florida at Asolo; the Barn Dinner Theatre in Roanoke,Virginia; the Utah Shakespearean Festival: as well as work off-off Broadway in NewYork City. Bill’s acting has also included a role in Saturday’s Voyeur at the Salt Lake Acting Company; and as Pozzo in Waiting For Godot at the Rose Wagner Theater. Bill also played the role of Vicious in the Trent Harris film, Delightful Water Universe.

Since 1980, Bill’s full time job has been in Radio. He has worked at KJQ and has beenwith X-96 (KXRK 96.3 FM) since it’s inception. At X-96, Bill is part of the Radio From Hell Show, with Kerry Jackson and Gina Barberi, weekday mornings from 6:00- 10am. Bill is married to the talented graphic designer Jennifer Parsons. He has four children:Old Little Bill and Old Little Mrs. Bill and Little Bill and Little Mrs. Bill.

RICKLEN NOBIS attended Whitworth College in Spokane, Washington, and graduated from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.  He has had extensive experience as an orchestral pianist, serving as keyboardist with the old San Francisco Chamber Orchestra, the Oakland Symphony and the San Antonio Symphony.  He served as keyboardist for the Utah Symphony for twenty-six years, working with Varujan Kojiian, Joseph Silverstein, Keith Lockhart and numerous other distinguished guest conductors. Mr. Nobis is the co-founder of Salt Lake City’s annual Vivaldi by Candlelight concert series, and acted as its musical director for 14 years.  He currently serves as Booking/Music Director for Utah’s Repertory Dance Theater, and has been associated with the Company for nearly thirty years.  He worked closely for several years with actor Robert Redford in the designing, facilitating and administrating of the Film Composer’s Lab at Redford’s Sundance Institute.  From 1997 through 1999 he traveled throughout the United States with the Third National Touring Company’s production of Andrew Lloyd-Weber’s “Phantom of the Opera”, and—up until the show closed after 18 years on the road in October of 2010—remained as keyboard sub.For over two decades he acted as producer and host of a daily afternoon classical music program for National Public Radio affiliate KUER-FM, broadcast throughout the state of Utah and parts of neighboring states.  The program also featured interviews with local and visiting artists from all disciplines, as well as live, in-studio performances. He is an active composer whose works are performed regularly, most recently in Iceland, China and Brazil.  Numerous orchestras throughout America, including the Utah Symphony and the Boston Pops, have performed his arrangements.Ricklen maintains a studio of private students in Salt Lake City, teaching keyboard (piano and harpsichord), composition and music theory. 



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