Dancing Crane Georgian Dance Theater
The Dancing Crane Georgian Dance Theater is a dedicated group of dancers, singers, musicians and theater professionals involved in the presentation of traditional performance arts from world cultures. The company specializes in Georgian dance and music and is committed to studying and accurately representing the folk traditions and their evolution into contemporary forms.
The Dancing Crane company has been active since 1996 in presenting classes and performances of Georgian dances and music. Its director is long-time Warwick resident Victor Sirelson, formerly of the Aman Folk Ensemble of Los Angeles. The Dancing Crane Georgian Dance Theater is a result of his dream of bringing the beauty and wisdom of authentic and ancient traditions into his community and of building a bridge between this old culture and modern American society. The best contact is formed when people are personally engaged. With this aim in view, the ensemble has been formed as a unique mix of local talent and professional performers from the Republic of Georgia, rehearsing and performing together with Warwick as our base.
The small country of Georgia in the heart of the Caucasus region has developed a dance tradition which rivals classic ballet in its demanding and refined technique, but which has a style all its own, containing strength, elegance and graceful movement evolved over centuries. The music, played on traditional folk instruments is based on ancient modes which help distinguish the dances as among the most beautiful in the world. Georgian songs are very distinctive and unusual with complex harmonies and moving lines producing music of a rare beauty. The modal structure is quite distinct from European music.
Songs are typically sung in three parts. A complex polyphony evolved at least as far back as the Tenth Century in Georgia at a time when single part chants such as Gregorian chant were the style in Europe. The folk songs or "khalkhuri" are quite varied, including work songs, heroic war songs, wedding songs, drinking songs, patriotic songs, lullabies and laments as well as religious songs with traces of both the Christian Orthodox as well as pre-Christian influences. There is also a rich tradition of city songs, which are based on the old harmonies and which form the basis of today's popular music in Georgia.
The company includes some of the best dancers, singers and musicians from the Republic of Georgia.The dancers are led by choreographer Vladimer "Dato" Goderidze. Like many of Georgia's best dancers Dato began dancing at a very early age, joining Tbilisi's professional childrens ensemble at the age of 7. He has soloed for many years with Georgia's top ensembles including the Georgian State (Sukhishvili) Dance Ensemble, the Georgian State Ensemble of Songs and Dances,the state orchestra of Georgia Rero, as well as doing choreography for Tbilisi's Metekhi Ensemble. The musicians are led by Lexo Goderdzishvili, highly respected throughout Georgia for his mastery of the traditional instruments. He is a core member of the Kolkheti Ensemble which is considered one of the best in all of Georgia. The Dancing Crane ensemble performs dances in authentic costume from the Black Sea regions of Adjaria and Guria to the mountain regions of Mtiuleti and Khevsureti. Dances from the Ossetian region are renowned for the gliding movements of the women and the special "Tseruli" or dance on the toes for the men. The music from this region is especially lovely.
Georgian dance music is characterized by strong rhythms and compelling melodies played on garmoni and doli (the drum common in the Caucasus). Old melodies are played on a pair of duduks, a double-reed instrument with a haunting sound evocative of very ancient times.
Visit the Dancing Crane - Georgian Dance Theater website for our Listening Room & Gallery
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