Calling on Community: Seeking Librarians, Gardeners, Photographers + Sewers/Knitters/Weavers

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VPL Lab Artist Emily Johnson seeks community volunteers for February 2013 presentation.

The Redfern Arts Center (RAC) at Keene State College and Vermont Performance Lab (VPL) are joining forces to present Niicugni(Listen) - a new dance performance created by Alaskan-born, Minneapolis-based choreographer Emily Johnson. Niicugni is a new work that is the second in a triology of works that relate to Johnson's Yup'ik heritage and the personal confluences of cultural traditions and contemporary performance work.

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Johnson was an artist-in-residence with VPL in 2011 where she worked with a group of local sewers to create 11 of the 50 hand-made fish skin lanterns that are featured in Niicugni. She is interested in bringing the community into her creative process again. VPL and the RAC are seeking non-dancers from the community to participate in this performance project: farmers and gardeners, librarians and archivists, sewers and knitters and photographers to participate in the performance of Niicugni in Keene in February 2013. Participants do not need any experience performing on stage, just a willingness to try something new, and be a part of a performance that celebrates community, place, memory, and identity.

Volunteers would work with Johnson to find a common gesture/ action that is done amongst the group. It might be the motion of planting seeds or harvesting crops, or a using a smoker or moving frames in a bee hive body or reshelving books. From this everyday gesture, Johnson would work with the group to create a common movement phrase that will be rehearsed and incorporated into the live performance. Participants would need to be available for two rehearsals the week of February 10 and for the performance on February 13.

If you are interested in participating in this project, please contact Sharon Fantl at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 603-358-2167 or Sara Coffey at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 802-257-3360.

Participants are expected to be available for one 2-hour rehearsal on Sunday or Monday, February 10 or 11, 2013 (TBD); for one evening dress rehearsal on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 and one performance on Wednesday, February 13, 2013. Participants will each receive a pair of tickets to the performance of Niicugni, an invitation to the post-performance party on February 13th, and a complimentary membership to the Redfern Arts Center for our 2013-2014 performance season.

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