Diamond City assembles weekend of dance
Spring is known for its dance school recitals, but we’ll see more than just the usual graduation showcase this weekend in Wilkes-Barre.
Fifteen different dance companies based in towns throughout The 570 will perform at the sixth annual Pirouettes in the Park dance festival in Kirby Park in Kingston on Saturday.
Presented in conjunction with Wilkes-Barre’s Cherry Blossom Festival, the program will be staged outdoors and therefore is subject to cancelation in the event of inclement weather. There is no charge to attend the festival.
Performances in a variety of dance styles from classical to contemporary are scheduled to begin every 20 minutes following a welcome at 11 a.m. Among the troupes expected to take the stage are Turi Studio of Dance (Scranton), Arabesque Academy of Dancing (Moscow), Without Walls Dance Co. (Wilkes-Barre), Conservatory of Dance (Hanover Township), Haifa & the Izdihaar Bellydancers, (Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Tunkhannock), PA Dance Vision (East Stroudsburg), Scranton Dance Center, Kerry Dancers (Drums), Fusia Dance Company (Stroudsburg), Ballet Northeast (Wilkes-Barre), Symmetry Dance Company (Scranton), Dance Theatre of Wilkes-Barre, Encore School of Dance (Mountain Top), David Blight School of Dance (Wilkes-Barre), and Dance Contours (Wilkes-Barre).
Back Mountain Marital Arts of Dallas and the Mountain Top Karate Center will collaborate as United Fighting Arts Association to present a finale demonstration choreographed to music.
It’s estimated that 300 dancers will perform before the festival concludes at 5 p.m.
At the E.L. Meyers Auditorium in Wilkes-Barre, another 500 dancers will perform in the Joan Harris Dancers revival of an original work by Dr. Kenton Harris, Elisabeth Harris, and Jennifer Harris first staged seven years ago. Corciev, the Grieving Wood, is a ballet incorporating “avant-garde choreography,” set to a musical score featuring both classical works by Mozart, Listz, and Wagner as well as symphonic treatments of rock epics by Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin. The story finds Queen Clava deep in mourning over the loss of her daughter. The pain of her loss is so profound, the entire forest weeps with her as she wanders through the night through her surreal kingdom searching in vain for the child. Hoping to bring the Queen relief, the dark spirit Clava and her horde kidnap young children including the Princess Anna, whose disappearance from her seventh birthday party sends a search party into Corciev. Along the way, the party lead by Anna’s older sister Princess Joan, must overcome the meddling magic of an eccentric village occupied by fortune tellers, gypsies, magicians, and peddlers.
Principal dancers include Caroline Conrad and Anna James as Princess Anna and Princess Joan, respectively, Amanda Sedor as the court Sorceress, and Maria Dutt as Queen Clava.
Performances will be offered on Saturday at 1 p.m. and again at 5 p.m. and on Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at the door or are available for $14 in advance at the Harris Conservatory for the Arts on Charles Street in Luzerne. Call 287-7977 for more information or visit www.joanharrisdancers.com.