DeSales Dance and TV/Film Students Collaborate on Screendance Festival

by Roseann Damico Schatkowski | Nov 20, 2014

Deere John

The Division of Performing Arts is pleased to announce its Dance and TV/Film departments’ presentation of the 9th Annual Screendance Festival on Saturday, November 22 at 8:00 PM and Sunday November 23 at 8:00 PM in the Commonwealth Room of the DeSales University Center on the Center Valley campus. The Screendance Festival is a free, non-ticketed event. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.

  • Read the preview article in The Morning Call here.

Saturday’s event will feature a slate of films created by Jamey Hampton and Ashley Rolland, artistic directors of the Portland, Oregon based dance company, BodyVox. The festival will screen eight of the award-winning films they have created with noted screendance film director Mitchell Rose. Jamey Hampton will attend the screening and discuss the making of dance-on-camera films at the conclusion of the program.

The program for the November 22nd screening will include “Modern Daydreams: Deere John,” a short piece about a man and a 22-ton John Deere excavator which is a dance of discovery, fulfillment, and loss which has accumulated 19 festival awards. The New York Times describes this work as “a funny and surprisingly touching fantasy.”

BodyVox’s “Modern Daydreams: Treadmill Softly” is about a man at the gym who becomes infatuated with a woman exercising nearby, inspiring flights of fancy. Film Finder described the dance as “a triumph of short filmmaking, nothing short of brilliant.”

 “Modern Daydreams: Islands in the Sky” is about four people weaving fifty feet in the air atop four cherry-pickers in the desert, aloft and aloof in their ivory towers. Film Threat called the piece an “inventive and conceptual crossbreeding of comedy and cutting edge dance.” “Modern Daydreams: Unleashed” features an office-bound cubicle drone fantasizing about his workplace coming to life with animal abandon.

“Learn to Phone Phony” informs us that 25% of all cell phone calls are fake. This instructional video teaches the finer points of the counterfeit call. “Case Studies from the Groat Center for Sleep Disorders” is a hilarious faux-scientific investigation of sleep disorder from the renowned (but fictitious) Groat Center.  

“Advance” is one dance told in two minutes featuring fifty locations. “Advance” is the winner of five festival awards including the “Audience Award” at Dance Camera West. “Contact” explores the premise that our days are battles, from which we take comfort in simple human contact. “Contact” is the 12th collaboration between BodyVox and Mitchell Rose. In 2013, it won the International Videodance Competition Best Choreography Prize at the International Festival of Video, Performance, and Technologies in Lisbon, Portugal.

On Sunday, November 23, at 8:00 PM, the program will feature films created in the “48-Hour Screendance Challenge.” In an effort designed to foster collaborations between the DeSales University dance, theatre, and TV/Film majors, students work together to conceive, choreograph, light, shoot, and edit a film in just 48 hours. At 4PM on Friday, November 21st, students are given a surprise prop that must be creatively incorporated into the film. In addition, this year’s underlying theme is “A Chocolate Feast” so all films will be based on that theme. All competing submissions are due by 4:00 PM on Sunday, November 23, allowing the festival adjudicator, Jamey Hampton, co-artistic director of BodyVox, just enough time to see and evaluate them prior to the public screening at 8:00 PM. The festival adjudicator will provide feedback on each of the films and will select a slate of winning film from the submissions. This popular event often draws a standing room only crowd.

The Screendance Festival is a free, non-ticketed event. Patrons are advised to arrive early as seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. The University Center is handicapped accessible.


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Tom McNamara
Executive Director of Communications
DeSales University
2255 Station Avenue
Center Valley, PA 18034

610.282.1100 x1219
Tom.McNamara@desales.edu