Today: October 19, 2018, 6:21 pm
Crafts, Arts, Hobbies

High Release Dance In Concert: A collaborative and emotional journey for local dancers

Palo Alto-based dance company High Release Dance will be presenting a series of new works at its home season at the Cubberley Theatre on October 7th and 8th. The dances, many of which are drawn from personal and emotional experiences of the dancers, range from contemporary, to modern-jazz, and even ballet parody.
High Release Dancers in Concert
High Release Dancers in Concert 2016-10-03 20:39:20
For the first time, High Release Dance is also performing an intergenerational contemporary piece, in which dancers, including both High Release and non-High Release dancers, are performing with their own children. The piece is choreographed by I-Heng McComb, and provides a glimpse of dancers’ real lives, and how complex it can be to share the love of dance with one’s children.

Other serious subjects include losing a parent, the challenges of communication, and making and overcoming mistakes. This year, the High Release concert also has a good sprinkling of upbeat pieces, and several works of comedy.

High Release Dance was founded in 1994 by a group of modern dancers seeking to pursue their own artistic visions and performance opportunities in a collaborative environment. The company has no artistic director, but functions as a collective, with each dancer contributing his or her particular skills and gifts and decisions being made together. The show this year features works by 12 company members (out of a company of 16 dancers), some of whom are choreographing for the first time for High Release Dance. Because so many of the dancers are also choreographing, dancers have a stake in the company in a way that is unusual for artistic companies that are usually led by a single person.

One piece, “Be The Swan” was created entirely collaboratively. In the summer of 2015, High Release had just finished performing its previous show, and no dancer was prepared to begin choreographing a new piece. But six dancers were available and interested in dancing – so the available dancers decided to create something together. The only concept that the dancers had when starting the piece is that it should be something comical. The six dancers spent several months working on the piece, suggesting ideas, trying things out, and modifying them to see if they could make it work. This is a uniquely collaborative piece from a uniquely collaborative group. Elena Grindley, one of the dancers, described the process, “The better ideas bubbled to the top, and we kept trying things out through trial and error. In the end, all six dancers all contributed ideas that were used and enhanced the piece. It certainly took a while, and required patience as we tried out people’s ideas - but all of the dancers understood the process, and we had a great time.”

The upcoming concert will be on October 7th and 8th, 2016 at Cubberley Theater in Palo Alto. The show starts at 8pm. Tickets are $20, or $15 for students/seniors. Tickets and more information are available at:

Press Information
High Release Dance
2831 Garber St.

Berkeley CA


Elizabeth Muller
Company Member

# 479 Words
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