Featured Film: Re-staging Shelter

Re-staging Shelter Bruce Berryhill & Martha Curtis, 2011 USA | 29m

Monday January 30th, 6:00pm Tuesday January 31st, 1:30pm Walter Reade Theater

Exclusive excerpt from Re-staging Shelter In October 2011, the Dance on Camera Tour made it’s way to Virginia Commonwealth University. Re-staging Shelter screened alongside the following films from our 2011 Festival- There is a Place, Unsung, Slow Dance, After the Water the CloudsFrom Roosevelt Island to Brooklyn, and Hoop. Read about the evening in the follow excerpt from The Commonwealth Times. (Read full article here)

‘Dance on Camera’ film screening showcases array of styles

This past Tuesday, six short films selected by the New York Dance Films Association and VCU Dance’s ‘Restaging ‘Shelter’’  premiered at the showing of ‘Dance on Camera’ film screening at the Grace Street Theater. The short films were selected for their portrayal of diverse dance styles across the world. The main event of the evening, directed by Bruce Berryhill and VCU Dance professor Martha Curtis was the premier of VCU Dance’s first documentary, “Restaging ‘Shelter.’”  The film follows the Urban Bush Women dance group and their artistic director, Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, as she taught last year’s VCU Dance students the piece “Shelter.” “Shelter” portrayed the concept of homelessness and being displaced in your world. The piece was characterized by a heavy use of drums and spoken word. The phrase “’cause I ain’t fled nothing, my country fled me” is repeated throughout the piece and is the basis for the work’s message. In this piece, Zollar says her art is serving a purpose by educating people on the feelings of being displaced, not just that people are displaced and homeless. For “Restaging ‘Shelter,’” current Urban Bush Women and former VCU Dance students, Bennalldra Williams and Samantha Speis, returned to teach the current dance majors the basics of getting in touch with their emotions and building the endurance necessary to dance with Zollar. The goal of the documentary was to not only relay the message of “Shelter,” but to showcase Zollar’s artistic process. In the end, the ”Shelter” did exactly what it intended to do: show the audience how emotionally involved the dancers were in the piece. The audience treated the documentary as if it was a home movie. They cheered and laughed when the dancers they knew were interviewed and applauded after clips from “Shelter” were shown.
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