PORT ANGELES — Using interpretive dance as a means to explore the mortality of the human race is the theme behind “This Way to the Egress,” a new show debuting on the North Olympic Peninsula on Saturday evening.
The family friendly performance — presented by Dance troupe LED of Boise, Idaho — is presented by the Juan de Fuca Foundation.
The performance begins at 7 p.m. at the Port Angeles High School Performing Arts Center, 304 E. Park Ave.
Tickets are $15 to $35, depending on seating, and $10 for youths ages 14 and younger.
Ticket are available online at http://jffa.org/ and at Port Book and News at 104 E. First St., Port Angeles, or at Joyful Noise Music Center, 112 W. Washington St., Sequim.
The performance “draws inspiration from the story of a runaway circus monkey and unfolds from youth to old age in a narrative that will connect us all and remind us of our humanity,” said Lauren Edson, LED artistic director, in an email.
“Featuring a stellar ensemble of musicians, dancers and a filmmaker, this grand production cannot be missed.”
During the multimedia presentation, performers will conduct a series of interpretive dances in front of a large video screen.
The performance was inspired by the founding of the Zoo Boise, according to www.ledboise.com.
In 1916, a circus traveled through Mountain Home, Idaho, and stopped briefly.
During the stop, a monkey escaped from captivity. This monkey was discovered several months later roaming around in a desert area and taken to Boise, where a zoo was erected around it, according to historians.
Using this story as the underlying metaphor for aging, “This Way to the Egress” will use circus, desert and zoo as the landscape.
It will explore themes of isolation, the degeneration of body, voyeurism and reflection.
The collaborative work will involve artists from several different mediums.
Although exploring such a profound topic, the presentation is “kid friendly,” Edson said.
“I think it would definitely be entertaining and suitable for the whole family.”
LED consists of about 17 dancers who perform a smattering of differently themed shows, according to its website.
The troupe was founded in 2015 by Edson and her husband, musician Andrew Stensaas, as a collaborative arts organization that can blend sounds and movement in a way that can transcend the artist-audience relationship.
Born and raised in Boise, Edson began her studies at Ballet Idaho and continued her formal training at North Carolina School of the Arts and The Juilliard School, under the direction of the late Benjamin Harkarvy, according to her biography.
She then went onto dance with the Trey McIntyre Project, BodyVox, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and Idaho Dance Theatre.
As a choreographer, Edson has won several fellowships, awards and been commissioned by numerous companies and Universities throughout the nation.
Stensaas, born in Mason City, Iowa, demonstrated from a very early age an interest in music, according to his biography.
Primarily self-taught, he received some formal training throughout his childhood in piano and percussion.
In 2000, he moved to Portland, Ore., where he was the lead singer, songwriter and creative force for the band Sons Of Sirens.
The band appeared on MTV2 several times and won a national band competition hosted by the same network.