Spectrum Dance Festival returns to Carbondale

Staff report
Wild Heart is among the Colorado dance companies performing and teachign at the Spectrum Dance Festival.
Courtesy photo |

If You Go …

What: Spectrum Dance Festival

When: Oct. 16-18

Where: The Launchpad and Thunder River Theatre, Carbondale

Tickets and more info:; 970-963-8681

Some of Colorado’s most exciting dance companies and local dance artists convene in Carbondale this weekend for the fourth annual Spectrum Dance Festival. It celebrates dance over three days, featuring performances and workshops at the Launchpad and Thunder River Theatre in Carbondale.

The festival is presented by the nonprofit Dance Initiative, which has been supporting local dancers in their profession and artistic development since 2009.

Spectrum Dance Festival kicks off with “Local Color” — a performance featuring original work created by and performed by Roaring Fork Valley dancers today at 7:30pm at the Thunder River Theatre. The local dance collective CoMotion also emerged out of the Initiative. Two members of CoMotion — Chloe Burton and Meagan Shapiro — will present original work during Local Color. CoMotion also will perform “Damages: The Implicit Hazards of Parallel Play,” a work set on the company by Dance Initiative’s artist-in- residence, Patrick Mueller, this spring.

Three Colorado companies — Wild Heart, Control Group Productions and the Grass Roots Project — will take the stage Saturday at Thunder River (shows at 5:30 and 8 p.m.). Each of the three companies provides a different perspective on the art of dance. Wild Heart uses dance and physical transformation as the sole vehicle for performance. Patrick Mueller of Control Group Productions utilizes his experience as a professional dancer in New York and in Europe. Mueller will be presenting Control Group Production’s newest work “dances made to be viewed in the dark.” Rennie Harris, the founder and artistic director of Boulder’s Grass Roots Project, is best known for founding Rennie Harris Puremovement, a hip-hop dance theater company dedicated to preserving and disseminating hip-hop culture, in 1992. Since then, he has received several accolades, including the Herb Alpert Award in the Arts, the Governor’s Arts Award, a United States Artist Fellowship and an honorary doctorate from Bates College. He most recently premiered “Exodus,” performed by the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater at the Lincoln Center this past summer. Grass Roots is his most recent project and takes on social and political issues inspired by the culture and style of the West Coast.

Workshops over the course of the festival are open to local dancers of all levels. Kat Gurley of Wild Heart and Patrick Mueller of Control Group will offer offering complementary workshops in modern floor techniques. Denver’s Flight Club teachers Jen Cameron and Austin Goodman will teach AcroYoga, and Meesh McGlone will offer a workshop in aerial dance. A full class listing and registration is online at