Thursday, February 4, 2010
IF YOU GO
WHEN: Feb. 12
WHERE: Unitarian Church, Milford, 8 p.m.
WHEN: Feb. 13.
WHERE: The Boys & Girls Club of Milford, 8 p.m. TICKETS: $5 students, $7.50 adults.
By GEORGE PELLETIER
On Feb. 12 and 13, three Julliard grads will bring their unique blend of music and dance to the Milford area.
One of the performers, Clara Kennedy, hails from Milford and will sing and perform on guitar and cello, the latter of which she has been playing for 17 years.
"I moved to New Hampshire when I was 10 or 11," Kennedy said from her home in New York City. "I have many friends in the area, so it will be great to be coming home."
One of Clara's biggest fans is her mom, Laura, who acts as the unofficial ambassador for the trio's area appearance.
"It's been great," mom Laura Kennedy said. "I love getting them press plus I'll be playing piano with them at the Unitarian Church. Much of the program is being orchestrated by Natalie Joachim. She's got a lot up her sleeve."
Laura's daughter will perform with fellow Julliard grads and former roommates flutist Joachim, and dancer and choreographer Robert Robinson. Additionally Joachim and Robinson have created their own company, Ditch Productions. The threesome met in their freshman year and graduated from Julliard in 2005.
Additionally, Clara has performed before at the Milford Town Hall "playing cello with mom," but added that she has no preference to any particular instrument.
"I like them all equally, for different reasons."
As for the performance image-aspect, Clara Kennedy noted, "that will include stop-motion with video containing all of the words to the poem, ‘Birches," by Robert Frost. Natalie and Robert combined their efforts in selecting that."
Clara listed her own personal favorites to include "The Jet Whistle," by Villa Lobos (which she and Joachim will perform); and her personal likes ranging from "I'm Satisfied," by Mississippi John Hurt, to "early finger picking," blues numbers.
Joachim, one part of Ditch Productions, said, "There is not a specific title to the entire show. Robert and I have ongoing selections from ‘Moving Parts,' a show that we've been developing for some time. And although that's not the title of the show, all pieces are based on 20th-century American poetry."
"I think it's going to be an exciting adventure," Joachim said of their excursion to the Granite State. "It'll be great to see the reaction outside of New York and gauge the response."
Having never performed here, Joachim said, "this is a totally new audience and I think they're going to enjoy it - the entire creative process. Plus, I believe that people can relate to the written word in a way that is pieced just created out of a lone place. It gives each audience member an opportunity to familiarize themselves with literature and get a brand new take on it."
Additionally, there are other conceptual excerpts. "They don't necessarily have text incorporated into the performance," Joachim said. "For example, there is a Millet piece with several alliterations of the poem, which includes vocal parts or spoken words, along with this acoustic landscape. The only video is ‘Birches,' which is a pretty interesting way to experience the poem."
Joachim said that when she was composing this piece, "the poem made it palatable. And it is very moving to see people see the words that inspire the sounds that are happening at that moment."
As co-director of Ditch Productions, Joachim said that the whole process started as "a means of expression for each of us."
"Spending a great deal of alone time in a practice room isn't always that interesting," she said. "What we have now is a great puzzle going. It's a way to play off of each other."
For the classically trained Robinson, contemporary dance blends his love and craft of ballet, modern dance and martial arts.
In describing their joint effort, Robinson called it "a kind of rock concert. If you go to a show like this, they have projections and live performances.
"I'd say there is a more intimate level of feeling guided, as opposed to some sort of stimulus overload."
For more information, master dance classes that are being offered or tickets, go to their Web site, ditch productions.com or contact Robert Robinson at (643) 267-7954. Locally, you can also contact Laura Kennedy at 673-4709.