As part of ArtsFest, Voci Dance converted the inside of a warehouse into a magical Victorian commentary on fashion. I arrived early and sketched the final moments of a rehearsal and then the mad rush to get lights in place and final set decorations finished. Genevieve Bernard, Voci Dance's fearless founder, welcomed me warmly. Tamara Marke-Lares did an amazing job of transforming the space using the simplest elements and draped fabrics. When people started to arrive it became my task to keep people from entering the performance space prematurely. The performance began outside where dancers gracefully explored a garden area enclosed in a dark wrought iron fence. A huge hooped dress was unveiled and Leah Marke emerged from inside, strapping herself into the immense garment. She reached for the stars as if the garment was the only thing keeping her earth bound. The other dancers unfurled a long train behind her as Victorian imagery flashed on the side of the building.
The dancers moved the crowd inside. The next performance featured Tamara as a seamstress who transformed the dancers one at a time. She would reach up and rip down a bolt of fabric from the ceiling and she would rip, knot and tie the fabric around the dancer creating a bold fashion statement. The audience was encouraged to move in close and dancers glided among the crowd. There was an amazing turnout for the performance.