Scheherazade banner

Dance Kaleidoscope’s season ending program of Scheherazade and An American in Paris was presented at IRT’s OneAmerica Stage to a rousingly approving audience last night. The ovation was not only for the magnificent display of dance, but also for Artistic Director David Hochoy’s 25 years leading the company, and for recognition of his long association with the company’s Executive Director, Jan Virgin, as well as with Lighting Designer, Laura Glover . It is evident that the company would not be such a crucial part of the fabric of Indianapolis dance and culture without the leadership and skills provided by this trio.

Jillian Godwin, Mariel Greenlee, Zach Young

The Princess (Jillian Godwin) is overtaken by the Witch’s Cronies as Scheherazade (Mariel Greenlee) encounters the Wicked Witch (Zach Young) in DK’s “Scheherazade 25”

As I say, the dancing was magnificent. The DK troupe is such a diversely talented corps, we see so many strong performances layered together in a piece such as Scheherazade. The quietly graceful countenance of Mariel Greenlee in the title role, is matched up with excitingly strong turns by Jillian Godwin as Princess and Zach Young as Wicked Witch. Harem dancers Emily Dyson, Jillian Godwin, Aleksa Lukasiewicz, Mandy Milligan and Missy Trulock offer allure, and are countered by Fates – Stuart Coleman, Brandon Comer and Timothy June – leading a frenzied final section of powerful choreography and emotion.

Director Hochoy created the steps and the stories for Rimsky-Korsakov’s score in 1992 as a showy end-piece to his first season with DK. They have survived the years well – as have the wonderfully colorful and depictive costumes by Barry Doss. Add Laura Glovers’ intensely beautiful lighting arrangements, and you have what could be Hochoy’s signature piece.

Brandon Comer, Caitlin Negron resized

Brandon Comer and Caitlin Negron dance the leads in DK’s “An American in Paris”.

A somewhat newer offering preceded the Scheherazade performance. Gershwin’s An American in Paris was delightfully portrayed by the company with Brandon Comer and Caitlin Negron as the featured couple. Gershwin wrote such a wonderfully varying piece, it is a perfect vehicle for Hochoy’s imaginative depictions – especially the busy streets of Paris, which here features a lively bus. Although the “boy meets girl’ aspect is delivered with charm – I thought it was interesting that this was not so much a romantic piece as it was a celebration of the composer’s love of syncopation and buoyant tempo. The performances were captivating, whatever the interpretations one gave it – and the strength of the troupe was impressive.

Sadly this program of dances will only be available one weekend – it would be wise to partake of this show, which is very entertaining and captivating for all ages.

Dance Kaleidoscope’s Scheherazade and An American in Paris continues only through June 5th at IRT’s OneAmerica Stage. Information about DK performances can be found at http://www.dancekal.org or by calling 317.635.5252.

  • – Photos by Crowe’s Eye Photography
  • – Banner photo by Freddie Kelvin
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