Modern dance company brings passion and talent to performance

Christina Oddo
Managing Editor

Camille A. Brown and Dancers brought modern dance to Tustin Dance Studio in a master class as well as the Weis Center stage for an evening performance on Oct. 5.

“Camille A. Brown & Dancers are incredibly talented,” Aliyah Johnson ’14, who attended the master class, said. “They moved unapologetically and gave me everything I needed. I felt revitalized and I got my confidence back. In class, Camille encouraged us to go all the way. I remember her saying something like ‘I’d rather you be too much than not enough, and I have to pull it out of you.’ So I got comfortable and gave her all of me and a little bit extra! For me, the class and performance was a breath of fresh air.”

The class consisted of technique and performance work that was evident and prominent throughout the evening on the Weis Center stage.

“Brown taught a phenomenal master class to some of our dance students, accompanied by the talented Phil Haynes,” Assistant Professor of Theatre and Dance Dustyn Martincich said. “The class focused on precise but individualized movement. She emphasized the history of the movement and encouraged dancers to explore their individual style. These values are inherent in her repertory seen on the Weis Center stage.”

The performance featured Brown’s “New Second Line,” highlighting the essence of jazz in New Orleans, as well as two solo works titled “The Real Cool” from “Mr. Tol E. RancE,” and “Evolution of a Secured Feminine.”

“It was fantastic discovering Camille A. Brown and Dancers,” Associate Professor of Dance Kelly Knox said. “The dancers lived fully in their physical power, stretching dynamically to the edges of the movement and exuding the music through their extended limbs.”

The evening also consisted of a duet titled “Been There Done That,” and Brown’s first work for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, “The Groove to Nobody’s Business.”

Camille A. Brown and Dancers focuses on theatricality as well as musicality in performance, and digs deeper into relationships, as well as other themes that span across time and reveal truth.

“With a poignant theatricality, the dances were accessible, resonating with clear motivations and recognizable human relationships,” Knox said. “I also truly appreciated the theatre and movement history that Brown’s dancers embody; it reminds me of the creative approaches my own colleague, Dustyn Martincich pursues in her teaching and research.”

Poetry, along with visual art and music of different genres, helps to create the energy of the performance. The goal of the dancers is to engage them in new ways.

“And the music! I ran out of the theatre and downloaded about 10 Betty Carter songs so I could relive the evening.”

“The whole show featured the work of a talented and passionate artist who really practices what she preaches,” Martincich said.

The Weis Center’s next performance will feature Vieux Farka Touré on Oct. 16 at 7:30 p.m. at the Campus Theatre and will be free and open to the public.

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