Dance Program to Present FALL DANCE CONCERT 2021

Friday, November 5, 2021

The Dance Program of the Department of Drama at the University of Virginia presents its Fall Dance Concert on November 11 – 13 at 8:00 p.m. in the Ruth Caplin Theatre.  This fall’s concert will feature the works of faculty, students, and guest choreographers for an evening of performance that explores multiple perspectives and themes through the medium of dance. 

This semester the Dance Program is pleased to present the work of two Virginia based guest artists: Maggie Small and Emily Wright.  Ms. Small performed for 16 years with the Richmond Ballet where she originated many roles in classical and contemporary works.  She retired from the Richmond Ballet in 2019 and is a member of their Advisory Council.  When asked about her work, Wild Swans Suite, Small stated that she “was originally inspired by how different parts of the human body can demonstrate a particularly gentle loveliness and was developed based on movement originate from and highlighting those areas.”  The piece is based on a work that debuted at Richmond Ballet in April 2017.  Maggie is currently the Vice President at Fred Astaire Dance Studio Richmond.

Dance artist and choreographer Emily Wright is based in Charlottesville and earned an MFA in Performance and Choreography from Arizona State University and a PhD in Dance Studies from Texas Women’s University.   From 2008-2018, Emily was an Associate Professor of Dance at Belhaven University. She also teaches classes, workshops, and residencies in community-based and university programs, such as the Boston Conservatory at Berklee, James Madison University, and McGuffey Art Center. As a socially engaged artist, a key part of Emily’s work is developing collaborative environments in which different voices, bodies, and experiences are valued and seen. She is the author of Dancing to Transform: How Concert Dance Becomes Religious in American Christianity. Her piece Lacunae explores gaps, blank spaces, discontinuities, and disruptions as generative spaces of creativity and possibility that can catalyze new ways of being in the world.

Two members of the dance faculty, Assistant Professor Katie Baer Schetlick and Associate Professor and Artistic Director of Dance Kim Brooks Mata, will present pieces in the Fall Dance Concert.  Schetlick’s piece OUT OF ME, drawing from the myth of Eurydice, asks “In the timeless experiential underworld of performance how do we contend with the moment of the glance, the looking back of an audience? How are we perceived, captured, read, categorized in the world? Historically as performers how have we been staged to appear? And how have we not yet been invited to be seen?”

In Brooks Mata’s most recent piece, (un)furl, the dancers navigate individual and collective moments that reveal subtle shifts between internal and external impulses as they furl and unfurl in relation to themselves, one another, and the spaces they are moving through. The choreographer began the creative process with a set of words/concepts to generate her initial choreographic phrases. She then asked the dancers to build solos from the same words in order to build a shared movement vocabulary that included individual and collective choices. As a result, a movement vocabulary that belongs to a shared world develops as we follow the dancers’ journeys through the piece.

In addition to the above works, fourth-year undergraduate student Zoe Ziff created an original piece for this concert. Ziff states that "with Of night and light and the half light, we attempt to illuminate finding self and others in unfamiliar places.”

Tickets for the Fall Dance Concert can be purchased online at, by calling 434-924-3376 or in person at the UVA Arts Box Office, located in the lobby of the UVA Drama Building, open Tuesday through Friday from noon until 5:00 p.m.  Tickets are $7 for adults, $6 for seniors, UVA Faculty/Staff, and UVA Alumni members, and $5 for students.  Full-time UVA students may receive one free ticket if reserved at least 24 hours in advance of their desired performance date.

Free parking on performance nights is available in the Culbreth Road Parking Garage, located next to the Drama Building.