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Dance series explores themes of PTSD and climate change

Choreographers Forcier and Kloetzel present works Jan. 21-23 for Professional Series, Dance


During her 2014-15 sabbatical in the UK, Melanie Kloetzel explored the nuances of the climate change debate in her performances. Kloetzel developed two site-adaptive performance works, Room and Rooms, and is now bringing her efforts on stage with Staging Rooms as part of the Professional Series, Dance.

By Aurélie Maerten
January 19, 2016

The School of Creative and Performing Arts will present works by dance faculty Marie France Forcier (Forcier Stage Works) and Melanie Kloetzel (kloetzel&co.) as part of the Professional Series, Dance from Jan. 21 to 23 at 8 p.m. in the University Theatre.

Forcier has been researching dance and post-traumatic states since 2012 and will be presenting two choreographies. Lab Rats (excerpt) is an unconventional duet featuring dancer Molly Johnson and a fish tank, for which Johnson received a 2013 Dora Award.

The Peahen is Forcier’s newest work and first collaboration with dancer Linnea Swan. It is a one woman piece, researching how post-traumatic states may intersect with, and inform, performance, through the thematic lens of a character's peacock obsession.

“What I am interested in staging is not so much a narrative but rather, the physical reality of a human condition; in this instance, dealing with trauma's ramifications,” says Forcier.

Forcier Stage Works, based in Toronto since 2005 and recently operating out of Calgary, tackles substantial subject matter through contemporary dance theatre. Developing and presenting the combined research of Forcier, choreographer/director, and composer James Bunton, the company’s work, seen internationally, has garnered much critical acclaim as well as several Dora nominations.

The prestigious Dora (Mavor Moore) Awards were established in 1978 and are presented annually by the Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts. The Dora Awards honour outstanding artists of theatre, dance, and opera productions in Toronto. 

Kloetzel’s newest work Staging Rooms is a performance installation that addresses adaptation in the face of environmental transformation. Through a dance theatre performance that takes place inside constructed ‘rooms’, the work exposes the limits and possibilities in our efforts to adapt to a rapidly changing world.

Staging Rooms, which involves sound, text, and dramatic movement, was developed from a workshop scenario where participants got together for daily sessions to build both the ‘rooms’ in which they perform as well as the performance itself.

kloetzel&co.is a dance theatre company that began in New York City in 1997 and is now based in Calgary. It has presented site-specific performances, dance films, stage works, and interdisciplinary collaborations across North America, South America, and Europe, and has garnered acclaim from The New York Times, The Village Voice, and Seattle Weekly, among others.

Tickets for Professional Series, Dance range from $10 to $15 and can be reserved by calling (403) 210-7576 or purchased at the door.