Generals on the Fringe
The Olympics aren’t the only cultural extravaganza happening in the United Kingdom this summer. Beginning today, Aug. 3, in Scotland is the famed Edinburgh Festival Fringe — and its roster of performing artists boasts Washington and Lee students, an alumnus and a professor.
On the dance bill is Jenefer Davies, assistant professor of dance at W&L and artistic director of the W&L Repertory Dance Company, and W&L student dancers Jennifer Ritter ’13, Erin Sullivan ’13, Blair Davis ’15 and Jillian Katterhagen ’15, plus Taylor Maxey ’13, the stage manager in charge of lighting and tech. They are part of Danceforms’ 60th International Choreographers’ Showcase. Jennifer and Jillian will perform “Veil of Ignorance,” which Jenefer choreographed to music by Philip Glass, and all four student dancers will perform “Queen Moo,” choreographed by Susana B. Williams to music by Gabrielle Roth and the Mirrors.
The students first performed “Veil of Ignorance” in the winter 2012 dance concert at W&L and are performing at the Festival Fringe by invitation. For “Queen Moo,” Jenefer brought a guest artist to campus last winter to set it, and the W&L dance company also performed the number. “It’s quite an honor to receive an invitation to the festival and be able to represent W&L on a national level,” said Jenefer.
The W&L dancers debut in Edinburgh on Aug. 5. Before that, however, Jenefer, Jennifer and Erin are doing aerial dance in England with a professional aerial-dance company.
On the musical side, there’s the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland’s production of Stephen Sondheim’s “Company,” with musical director Joshua Harvey. A member of W&L’s Class of 2000, Josh is studying for his M.A. in musical direction of musical theatre at the Royal Conservatoire.
The festival presents a month’s worth of something for everyone: spoken-word performances, cabaret, children’s shows, comedy, dance and physical theater, events, exhibitions, music, musicals, opera and theater. This is the second time W&L performers have joined the mix; their first appearance came in 2006, when students performed a Neil LaBute play called “Tits and Blood.”