DALA Director Jonathan Guise. Photo by Rhiana Guise
By BERNADETTE LAURITZEN
Dance Arts Los Alamos will present “Neverland” May 16-18 at the Duane Smith Auditorium.
Dance Arts Los Alamos Director Jonathan Guise has written a one act ballet based on the novel “Peter Pan” by J.M. Barrie. Guise became the new director of DALA this year.
“I began dancing professionally when I was 18 year old upon graduating from the Harid Conservatory, an accredited dance arts school located in Boca Raton Fla.,” Guise said. He has danced professionally with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, the Boston Ballet, and the Eugene Ballet.
A special performance on Friday will include “Peace for Broken Pieces,” a contemporary work in tribute to the lives lost in the community within the last year due to suicide.
“I planned on creating this piece June of 2013, about two months after I lost, my dear friend and co-worker, Julian Hunsaker on Easter Sunday,” Guise said. “Julian was a musician, and a very talented one at that. We used to speak about shows we wanted to do and how his music inspired me and my choreography inspired him.”
Guise’s students have been working on this presentation for the past five and a half months and have been extremely dedicated to the rehearsal process, he said. His senior dancers from Los Alamos High School are Lauren Burr, Renee D’Andrea and Louisa Singleton. Ensemble members include Cody Maggiore, Jenna Erickson, Melina Burnside and Indiana Warrior, just to name a few.
“When it comes to “Peace for Broken Pieces,” I selected those who knew the victims,” Guise said. “Some other students joined to support their fellow dancers. I think that so far, it has been a very healing process for them and I hope that translates to the audience.”
A special Friday, May 16 performance has discounted tickets for $5 and offers a mixed repertoire, which will showcase the diversity of the dancers. Guise hopes that “Peace for Broken Pieces” will inspire people to get involved with the community, to support those left behind after suicide and support program initiatives to offer support and raise awareness, he said.
Show times are 7 p.m. May 16 and 17 and 2 p.m. May 18 at Duane Smith Auditorium.
A complimentary performance of “Life in a Pond,” featuring DALA’s early childhood division is at 2 p.m. May 17 and is a free presentation.