This weekend sees a contemporary dance concert unusual in a number of ways. Firstly, it’s put on by the Barefoot Collective, but features not only their professional work but that of Gig Harbor High School students as a result of free workshops given there recently by the group. And secondly, it’s not at a theater: Instead, the show is at an empty storefront space on Pacific Avenue, Tacoma, as part of the Spaceworks program.
The high school workshops are new to Barefoot, a contemporary dance collective which has been giving creative and unusual performances over the last few years both in its studio (shared with Tacoma City Ballet) and at outdoor sites like the Museum of Glass. As part of company outreach, the Collective gave three free Saturday workshops to Gig Harbor High School students, who collaborated to create dances which will premiere at this weekend’s performances of “The Ides of May.”
As the press release says, “Dance, and the creative expression that comes from it, helps to build self esteem, peer relationships, and physical as well as mental strength. Performing with professional dancers provides mentorship opportunities for these students and gives a glimpse of how careers can be made in the performing arts.”
The shows also feature work by Barefoot choreographers Michael Hoover and Katie Stricker, as well as BQDanza director Carla Barragan, a fusion of puppetry and dance. Dancers include Spectrum’s Joel Meyers, as well as Barefoot regulars.
The venue’s the other unusual part: As part of Spaceworks Tacoma, a project filling empty storefronts downtown with art, Barefoot will present “The Ides of May” in the large space at 915 Pacific Avenue.