Before 2012 is over, finally getting in a post about Gathering Wild's tour this past summer to perform Mohonk Mountain House. Not only did we have one of the best runs of "27," but we got to stay at the resort during a couple of beautiful summer days.
The performance itself went really well and was well received by the audience, many of whom stayed to ask lots of questions at the end. The parlor space is a huge, beautiful room that even has a small balcony. We thought the sound system had quit working during rehearsal, but was luckily resurrected when someone who worked there found something unplugged and plugged it in! The fun part of the space is that crossovers from one side of the stage to another side "backstage" happen on the deck overlooking the lake, with us climbing out of and into very large windows. This year they put up signs telling people to stay off the deck. Other years, people have been out in the rocking chairs on the deck while we're performing, and running back and forth through the windows on the deck right behind them!
It's a fantastic place and there's so much to do when we're not rehearsing and performing.
Some thoughts from the company about the trip:
Kay: I love the view of the whole lake and house and the mountains in the distance from the top of the tower after a hike up!
I loved hanging out on the porch every night, rocking chairs and boxed wine. I think that was my favorite. Plus our crossover situation, haha. Also Keri, Z and I had a marvelous rock scramble adventure!
I loved my solo walk up to the tower and watching Z paddle board from the top. Also, mineral bath, shower, sauna, hot tea and fluffy robe.
The shrubbery maze that I dragged Keri to at night......we were to scared to wander in in the pitch dark, but the next day it was even scarier during Bootcamp class! We had to run up and down as fast as we could for several rotations. Keri wanted me to help her out by pretending I was Jack Nicholson chasing her with an axe.
Also, the rock scramble/labyrinth climb was AMAZING and made me feel like Xena Warrior Princess!! (though not the smartest thing to do day of performance).
It was dream like to share Mohonk with people I love, admire and delight in. I LOVED the rampant discoveries...watching the glee spread and the bonds build with true enjoyment and ease. I cannot think of many more ideal situations than traveling and experiencing life outside of Atlanta with Gathering Wild.
It's also fun to be celebrities of sorts on the day after the show. At meals the following day, or in the halls, sometimes people would stop to tell us how much they enjoyed the performance, which is of course, very flattering.
And then there was the food! The food is amazing, with an all you can eat buffet at every meal. We would leave stuffed, and saying, "I don't think I'll ever want to eat again" and then everyone would come back for the next meal an say, "oh look, I CAN eat again!" because you just couldn't see all the tasty options and turn it all down. The best part, in my opinion, is eating lunch at The Granary, which is the picnic buffet with barbecue (even though I don't eat meat, the veggie burgers off the grill were yummy!) And the huge bowls of berries! Sally even got a heart-shaped double blackberry.
Everyone found their own way to spend the time we had there when we weren't dancing, and there were lots of different ways! I think most of us took the walk up to the top of Sky Top and saw the views from the top of the ridge. The more adventurous of the group did things like going for runs, trying the paddle board on the lake and taking boot camp classes. A bunch did the rock scramble through the "labyrinth". I didn't do that one this time but it's pretty amazing because all these huge boulders are at crazy angles from when the glacier went by thousands of years ago, just tossed around by that huge force. You really do scramble to get through; it's fun and the view on the other side is beautiful.
All of these activities were going on while those of us in the "moms' room" sat on the deck in the evening and went to the spa on our day off. The other options included lake activities like paddle boats and the favorite, which was new, was standing paddle boards. There's also a "beach" and swimming area at the lake. There are all sorts of organized activities, like our performance, there was another evening in the arts festival the night we arrived with a reading by two fairly well-known actors. And I even wanted to try out the trail rides on the horses from the stables, but they were booked and I ran out of time.
Sunday, December 30, 2012
Sunday, July 1, 2012
Tuesday, June 5, 2012
Hello from the road!
Gathering Wild is in Charleston, SC for our first “Summer Excursion” as well as our first time ever participating in the Piccolo Spoleto Festival. On Monday, we performed 27 for the Dance at Noon series. It was a grueling but wonderful day starting with tech rehearsal from 8-11 am (which meant leaving the house at 7 to drive and find parking) for our noon performance. The company got a little bit of a rest over lunch at Fleet Landing before heading back to the theater to tech for the Dance Festival.
We were quite pleased with audience turnout--especially for our debut Charleston performance--and stoked to receive so much good press from Charleston’s publications. Just before leaving this past weekend, we were surprised to discover that 27 had been pegged as Charleston Magazine's top pick in dance to see at the festival! Reviews in today's Charleston City Paper described the show as “...innovative and eclectic, pulsing with energy..." and “...worth seeing for it’s courage and strangeness.” We particularly appreciate an article in The Post & Courier. Writers Mary Gibble and Dani Villalobos seemed to have really sunk their teeth into the show’s intention:
"Morrison's dark chants, accented tribal beats, evoked the eerie post-mortem tone that characterized the section as a whole. The dancers' loose, whimsical upper bodies and almost inebriated expressions took on the tone of Morrison the man rather than the content of the songs."
"The choreography was dynamic and visually complex..."
"The work is well-crafted and ambitious.."
We feel so fortunate for these reviews as we proceed further down the creative path of 27. I think we will really be able to benefit from their unbiased commentary; the company has been in discussion all morning and everyone is motivated to take 27 back to the studio.
This afternoon (Tuesday) we contributed our first piece from The Sutra Project to Dance Festival, hosted by Robert Ivey Ballet. We had additionally intended to perform a 30 minute selection of 27 at the stage set up in Marion Square but took a long lunch at Hyman’s when that was cancelled due rain. (Hush puppies and margaritas--an excellent plan B if you ask me!)
In addition to two successful performances, the trip has provided an excellent setting for company bonding (which is really a much more mature way of describing a series of pranks involving the 2 foot tall "Vacation Santa") and birthday celebrating. Happy birthday Sally (yesterday) and Z (tomorrow)!! We have been spoiled by the incredible Lake House at Bulow Plantation--seriously people, this place is ridiculous. There's plenty of room for twelve of us in this vast, gorgeous lodge. With the exception of the taxidermic menagerie that doesn’t fall within many of our decorating tastes--bazaar but hugely entertaining!--it is impeccably decorated. The house looks over a wide shallow lake, complete with it’s very own private piney island (and wooden bridge for your convenience)! Some of the earlier rising dancers claim to have spotted alligators but most of my animal encounters have been with our adopted "Kitchen Cougar." And bugs bites. Lots of bug bites. But I guess that’s to be expected when the group spends several hours each night drinking bottle upon bottle of wine on the huge back porch.
We have been able to save a lot of mullah by cooking dinners and breakfast at the house--compliments to Chef Z, and a handful of our other notably kitchen-accomplished dancers (I generally take on dishwashing)! We’ve fed ourselves these three days for around $20 each!
The company is covering as much as it can bearing in mind our travel to NY next month: $285 for theater rental and $1,155.50 for 3 nights of accommodation at the Lake House (comes to about $30 per person each night). One of Gathering Wild’s goals for our next year (our fiscal year runs Aug-Jul, so we’re at the end of our current one) is to be able to cover more travel expenses like gas, per diems, checked bags when flying, etc. Until then, these trips rely on the enthusiasm and commitment of Jerylann and dancers. We truly, sincerely cherish our every opportunity to spend time with each other, dancing and otherwise. When those opportunities happen to be located in gorgeous, historic coastal towns, frankly, all the better.
If you are able and willing to help the company cover some of these expenses please visit the site for this summer’s online giving campaign:
For every $20 donated you’ll be entered to win one of three pairs of tickets to see The Sutra Project this fall. Not to mention, that any contribution is hugely helpful in covering travel expenses. These trips provide great opportunity for Gathering Wild to grow as an artistic entity and offer us invaluable exposure to new audiences and partnerships. With every performance we do our best to offer technically proficient, audience-accessible dance and represent Atlanta as a nationally preeminent dance and arts community. But we can’t do it without your support! (Literally, we still need to book ground transportation in NY!) Please consider giving $20!
|"Kitchen Cougar" supervising dinner prep|
|post-production lunch at Fleet Landing|
|the flock is on the move|
|on the back deck, where most of our time was spent|
Wednesday, May 30, 2012
We have 3 months to raise $3 thousand for performances in 2 cities;
we’re offering 3 chances to win 2 tickets...
would you pitch in $20?
May 30th-Aug 30th, 2012
Just $20 will help us offset several rapidly approaching travel expenses and will give you the chance to win 2 tickets to The Sutra Project this fall
Your Donation will help
- house the company in Charleston, SC for our performances at the Piccolo Spoleto Festival on June 4 & 5. (Check it out here: http://www.piccolospoleto.com/?p=9613)
- fly dancers to New Paltz, NY. We are presenting 27 at the Mohonk Mountain House Festival of the Arts on July 24. (For more info, see: http://www.mohonk.com/Events/FOA12)
- produce GW’s upcoming original production The Sutra Project, to premiere October 26 & 27.
Along with our sincere appreciation for your donation, with every $20 donation, your name will be entered into a drawing to receive two FREE tickets to this fall’s world premiere of The Sutra Project, a collaboration with the Joe Palese Trio. Three winners will be chosen.
to make a donation visit:
or send checks payable to
Gathering Wild Dance Co.
2733 Braithwood Rd.
Atlanta, GA 30345
with sincere thanks & appreciation,
Gathering Wild Dance Company
Sunday, April 29, 2012
Thanks to everyone who came out to see Gathering Wild at this year's Inman Park Festival! The company premiered our first piece from this fall's upcoming original production The Sutra Project. It's been several years since we've participated in the festival and it was great to be back and among some of our dance peers. Special thanks to Carolyn Stine McLaughlin for putting the Inman Park Dance Festival together; we are so appreciative of her commitment to promoting Atlanta's dance companies at the festival! We really enjoyed meeting Metropolitan Ballet Theater's Maniya Barredo and her group of fierce young dancers and how wonderful to share the stage with fellow veteran companies, Zoetic Dance Ensemble, Full Radius Dance, and Ballethnic! We very much enjoyed being a part of one of Atlanta's favorite festivals and hope to see everyone next year!
photos by BurnAway
Thursday, January 12, 2012
holy moly. less than TWO weeks until 27 Revisited! Needless to say, we Gathering Wild-ers are pumped! We kicked off crunch time with a long rehearsal last Monday, our first after a nice long winter break. While in place to start our first run-through of the show, I found myself joking and laughing with my fellow stage-right-starting dancers. All of the sudden, I was struck all by a feeling of genuine joy to back at home--that is, in the studio with Gathering Wild dancers, Jerylann and even Rachel was there! Once acknowledged, joy manifested itself into excitement: the thought of us all embarking on the final leg of this project. What better way to begin the New Year? I sincerely hope that, so far, 2012 has been experienced this way by all of you as well: warm, satisfied, rested and delightfully optimistic.
Ok. Enough with the warm fuzzy. The music began and the world started turning again--very, very quickly as it often does, particularly this close to show time. Since then, it has been constant rehearsing, press releasing, silent auction updating, tweeting, costuming, emailing, music editing, poster distributing...you get the picture.
Actually, things are coming along quite nicely. This week we’ve completed three pieces: Jerylann reworked “Little Wing,” Bubba created a new Cobain piece to ‘Something in the Way” (y’all. It is awesome. So creepy and delicious! Awesome.) and he plugged Kay and Sally into the “Maybe” trio (in the Janis section). Jerylann has also knocked out most of her new Janis quartet to the song “Get It While You Can,” so that song has been stuck in my head all week (fine by me). As usual, Rachel is blowing us away with her incredible artwork; we are all so proud of her and the gorgeous postcards and posters we are privileged to handout.
Speaking of artwork, most of it is available for bidding! Be sure to check out our online silent auction! (http://www.32auctions.com/organizations/2612/auctions/2910) This is our only fundraiser for our upcoming local show and for future traveling performances (New York, Kentucky and Serenby, GA so far). Bidding is now underway! You’ve already missed out on the $50 Brickstore giftcard and a book/giftacard set to Little Shop of Stories, but there’s still a ton of great stuff: yoga and dance class cards (Vista Yoga & Dance 101), cooking and knitting lessons, dinner & tickets to the show (special thanks to the renowned Miller Union for donating a $50 giftcard!), LOTS of restaurant gift cards, brunch at Sweet Melissa's, truffles, greeting cards ...have I mentioned Rachel’s fantastic artwork? Actually, Rachel isn’t our only artist this go round. GW is so very very lucky to benefit from the incredible talent and savvy of Gigi Pedraza. Gigi came to the show in April (her adorable girls dance with Ms. Jerylann at Callanwolde) and was struck by Rachel’s photo portrait of Toya that we have been using for publicity. She asked Rachel for permission to create an oil painting of the composition:
(above) Rachel's poster and (below) Gigi's oil painting
As you can see, the painting is gorgeous and Gigi has since taken on helping us out with publicity and fundraising-which we oh so need. Gigi’s oil painting of Toya, as well as some of her other artwork, can be purchased through the online auction or at the show. I am so thrilled about Gigi and Rachel’s combined artistic talents which will transform the lobby at Fabrefaction, providing audience members with an ambiance of ascension before even stepping into the theater.
Well, in exactly one week from this very moment we’ll be at Fabrefaction for tech rehearsal and I’ve got some volunteers to rally and more emails to send. We hope that you’ll consider sharing the New Year with us (and some of the 27 club!); tickets are available at www.gatheringwild.ticketleap.com. Happy 2012 everyone!