4 p.m. Latchis Theatre
Southern Vermont Dance Festival is pleased to present a rare opportunity only being offered in a few places around the country. SVDF has been given access to an opera that is being produced currently to show as a preview. SVDF would like to thank Mira Spektor for giving us the opportunity to show this. A DVD of “Villa Diodati” – a chamber opera - will be screened at the Latchis Theatre, 50 Main St., on Sunday, July 12, at 4 p.m. Admission is by donation, and proceeds will support the Southern Vermont Dance Festival.
“Villa Diodati” runs 73 minutes. Music is by Mira J. Spektor, with lyrics by Colette Inez and Byron, Shelley, Spektor and Woodsworth. In “Villa Diodati,” an American couple, on a Swiss train, get derailed into 1816 and the Villa Lord Byron rented for his mistress, his friend the poet Percy Shelley and Mary Shelley who wrote Frankenstein in a cold summer afternoon. Later that night Mary will get haunted by the Monster she created and also by the ghost of her mother, the British Feminist writer Mary Wolstonecraft Godwin. “Villa Diodati” is filmed live by Bank Street Films, in York Theater in St Peter’s Church, with beautiful Swiss images and wonderful young singers who sing about love, death, ghosts, games and premonitions. Today the haunted Villa Diodati still stands as a landmark, overlooking Lake Geneva.
Critics have hailed “Villa Diodati.” Allan Kozinn of the New York Times described it as “attractive and tonal and recalled some of the more gracious music in Bernstein’s ‘Trouble Tahiti'…Particularly appealing was a duet between Mary and Percy Shelley: ‘There is no heaven but my love'.” Talkin’ Broadway wrote "Mira J. Spektor (music) and Colette Inez (lyrics) have imbued their show all the classic elements of success - luxurious love, vibrant-voiced performers, lush poetry, and a visionary director. … The unabashedly operatic music wraps you in the warm embrace of the writings timeless romanticism. You'll probably hear no better musical all this year than Villa Diodati."
The Southern Vermont Dance Festival is happening from July 16-19, bringing four days of gala performances, workshops, community events, A silent auction and Key Note Speaker, Billbob Brown speaking on "Reframing the Arts in America.” Check out details at www.southernvermontdancefestival.com and come see “Villa Diodati” on Sunday, July 12, at p.m. This show is by donation.
Thu 16 - Sun 19
4:30 p.m. Latchis Theatre
The third annual Southern Vermont Dance Festival takes place July 16-19 at many locations in downtown Brattleboro, including the Latchis Theatre, and other nearby venues.The festival features free community events, over 100 classes, 3 gala shows, 2 informal shows, a dance performance/dance party, a silent auction, a guest speaker and an opening reception. In all, 58 artists and teaching faculty will be taking part throughout the four days.
Southern Vermont Dance Festival is a unique experience in that it offers opportunities to absolutely everyone, from the complete non-dancer to the dance professional. This year, there are classes in tap, ballet, modern, jazz, contemporary, ballroom, African, hip hop, belly dance, pilates, yoga, composition and more. Each class is offered at all levels and happens in downtown Brattleboro. People who purchase festival passes can attend one to four classes per day and have access to all community events, informal concerts and two of our three gala concerts.
The community events are free and open to the public and happen throughout the four-day festival. This year, there is live music with Garrin Benfield, David Ross from Keene, N.H., Dan Lydon from Brattleboro, as well as the popular local band, The Snaz. In addition there are dance performances and workshops throughout each day. This year, the festival is doing a dance fair in partnership with Brattleboro Savings and Loan on the BS&L lawn from 3-5 p.m. on Friday July 17. Another free feature is "Movement 2015," a movement related art walk that features 12 venues and 15 artists throughout Brattleboro.
The festival offers six full performances as well as well as an Opening Reception. The Latchis Theatre is the site of gala concerts on Thursday, July 16, at 4:30 p.m., and Friday, July 17, at 8 p.m. There is also a gala concert on Saturday, July 18, at 8 p.m., at the Colonial Theater in Keene, N.H., that features Dances by Isadora, a Boston-based company that shows the original works of Isadora Duncan. All of these concerts feature adjudicated work by various choreographers and bring major companies to Brattleboro from all over the country. The festival also hosts the Stone Church Series - three very different performances held at the Stone Church. There is a dance party/dance performance on Thursday July 16, at 945 p.m., that combines the talents of The Snaz, Elizabeth Hallet and IBIT Dancers to create an innovative dance performance that morphs into a dance party. The series also includes a performance at 1:30 p.m., on Friday July 17, and a closing concert at 6 p.m., on Sunday July 19. There will be an Opening Reception on Thursday, July 16, at 6:30 p.m., that features guest speaker, live music by Garrin Benfield, food and a fun dance performance. Guest Speaker Billbob Brown’s talk at the opening reception will focus on the importance of arts to the economy and the social fabric of society. He will discuss the difference in how artists are supported in the United Stated and in other countries. He will explore why art is so important to society and what we can do to support art and artists.
Tickets to performances range in price. For information or to purchase tickets, visit www.southernvermontdancefestival.com.
The festival was born three years ago, in the aftermath of Tropical Storm Irene and the Brooks House fire. Festival Founder and Executive/Artistic Director Brenda Lynn Siegel, who had lost everything in the flooding from Irene herself, wanted to help her hometown and turned to her career artistic passion, dance, to do it.
The benefits of the festival are three fold. “We would offer public art installations, visual and performing, completely free to the public thus gathering people from all over New England to come see the town and the performances.There would be performances bringing the top level world-renowned choreographers, dancers and faculty from all around the world to Brattleboro and we would show off our incredibly talented local dance community,” Siegel said.
This festival would make Brattleboro a dance hub and would show Brattleboro as a place that people could come throughout the year to vacation, see dance, see theater and enjoy visual art exhibits. This festival would make Brattleboro a place to come back to each July and many times throughout the year. What's more, “SVDF is a dance festival that shows dance as an art form that is accessible to all. It celebrates movement whether you have never walked into a studio or you are a professional. It speaks to those who love to watch dance and those who love to take dance. It resonates with those who love the inspiration of visual art installations and public art displays that capture movement,” Siegel added.
"How do we make a difference?" Siegel asks. "We show our town and promote our town for what it is - a community filled with visual and performing arts and artists. A community that has so many things for kids to do that one can't decide which is best. A community that celebrates the arts. We bring people to town by promoting the town as the whole, by embracing collaboration. When we start to support each other as artists and as a business community. Then and only then is when we will see our town thrive. I don't know what else I can do. I have to do my part."
To purchase tickets, find out how to volunteer or sponsor an event go to www.southernvermontdancefestival.com