Technical precision, athletic ability, and passionate performances are the trademarks of The Synthesis Dance Project. Artistic Director Tracie Stanfieldcreates soulful and inspiring works that delve into time, space and beyond, pulsating with energy and dazzling movements. The group is one of the featured companies in the second annual Brooklyn Dance Festival, which will take place Saturday, May 4 and Sunday, May 5 at the Actors Fund Arts Center in downtown Brooklyn.
In the interview below, Tracie Stanfield, Artistic Director of the Synthesis Dance Project, discusses her creative process, her participation in the Brooklyn Dance Festival, and more.
What piece are you performing at The Brooklyn Dance Festival and what is the idea or inspiration behind it?
We’re performing one of our audience favorites, Broken Light. I prefer to keep the inspiration for my work to myself as I enjoy hearing the audiences’ own interpretations. I have found that when I say too much, the audience starts looking for my meaning in the piece instead of enjoying the work and defining their own experience. I will say that the music is fantastic! I always start with letting the music “tell’ me what to do and how to move. The music is a remix by Radiohead – haunting, contagious and very cool.
What is your dance background?
My official bio: Tracie Stanfield has captivated audiences with her energizing commercial choreography as well as her thoughtful, innovative concert work for Synthesis Dance Project Tracie’s choreography highlights include The Merry Widow with the Verismo Opera Company, Movement Exchange in Tokyo, Dream.Believe in Brazil, an online campaign for EOS/Caseology watches and independent film “The Fairy Queen” with Director Erin Levendorf as well as commissions from Capezio and Tapestry Dance Company. Tracie’s choreography has been seen at SUNY Purchase, Mesa State College, The Los Angeles Dance Invitational, World Showdance Championships in Germany, The Elan Awards honoring Susan Stroman and The Sureste Dance Festival (Mexico).
Favorite part of the rehearsal process?
I love the first day of a new piece. I rarely sleep the night before starting a new piece and run on nervous energy the entire day. The idea of taking a blank, bare stage and filling it with stories, movement, patterns, dynamics, and emotion is pure joy to me.
Tell us about the Brooklyn Dance Festival Company performance that will take place at the end of the Festival.
The BDF Company is a great opportunity for dancers who are not in a company yet, in between jobs or looking for a performance outlet. The dancers audition and learn the entire piece in two days. It is a “boot camp” type of experience! We (the board of directors) wanted the Brooklyn Dance Festival to go beyond showcasing the amazing talent on our Festival roster, so we created the BDF Company in order to offer a learning and performance experience to the dance community at large.
To learn more about the Brooklyn Dance Festival or to purchase tickets, visit brooklyndancefestival.org. And check out our Facebook page for the latest Festival news, artist interviews, and more.
Interview conducted by Elisa Lichtenbaum. A Senior Writer at Thirteen/WNET New York, Elisa has written articles on subjects ranging from Woody Allen to Downton Abbey. She studies tap dance with Germaine Salsberg.