Presenting Denver would like to shine the spotlight on Candice Barth!
Choreographer Name: Candice Barth
Hometown: Littleton, CO
Current city you live in: Littleton, CO
Education: BFA in Dance and Minor in Business (2011), MFA in Dance (2019)
Presenting Denver: Can you describe an aspect of your work and/or creative process?
Candice Barth: As a choreographer, I look at both research and music for inspiration in my creative process. I love using this dual approach, as it allows me to incorporate both my analytical and artistic tendencies towards problem-solving. With research, I am able to gather a firm understanding of what I want to portray to my audience and am able to more clearly and articulately communicate my intentions. Knowledge is, indeed, power and with a strong base of information about what I am creating, the creative process and performance experience become more elevated for all involved: myself, my dancers, and the audience. Whereas research helps me discover the intention of my piece, the musicality and structure of the music I am working with inform the movement and structure of my piece. Typically, the first step in my creative process is to create an outline of the musical structure. From this, I then create a movement outline, or story-board, of my overall work. After deciding on a general beginning, middle and end, the fun of connecting the dots with movement vocabulary begins.
PD: If you ever have free time, how do you spend it?
CB: I love baking in my free time. Baking, to me, is the perfect blend of science and art. The nerd in me loves precise measuring and mixing while the artist in me loves decorating and making something beautiful to look at… and tasty to eat!
PD: What do you hope your audience takes away from this piece?
CB: My intention with this piece is to present choreography that evokes a sense of unexpected love which reaches beyond the confines of normalcy. My inspiration comes from Anthony Doerr’s novel, All the Light We Cannot See. The novel follows an adolescent boy and girl as they traverse their own unique challenges in the midst of WWII. Although they are separated by distance, culture, and circumstances, their lives gradually become intimately and beautifully intertwined. In a time of division, I hope to send a message of looking past our own differences and embrace that which unifies us as human beings.
PD: What is your definition of success?
CB: My definition of success is achieving some level of personal growth. If you have learned from a mistake, grown from experiencing challenges, become stronger because you faced your fears… you have succeeded! In today’s social-media-saturated society, it is easy to get caught up in a definition of success that is based on the opinions or affirmations of others. Rather than relying on others, it is important to trust ourselves in recognizing our own success, no matter how big or small our victories may be.
PD: At this time in history, what do you feel is the purpose, meaning, or effect of dance for your audiences, students, dancers, the Festival, you or others?
CB: After studying dance history over the past couple of years, it is interesting to see how the purpose of dance has changed along with the historical context of the time. For example, during the Romantic period of ballet, audiences wanted an escape from the hardships of their everyday lives. In response, ballets were made as such, an entertaining escape into a fantastical world of sylphs, fairies and princesses. On the other hand, modern dance evolved as an artistic expression that asked its audience to think about what they were viewing, as many dances were made in response to socio-political events happening at the time.
At this time in history, I believe we as artists are continuing to use dance as an expression of the human experience. Delving into the emotional and physical experiences that drive humanity, choreographers want their audiences to FEEL something, whether that be happiness, anger, sadness, fear, etc. More and more, dance is becoming an outlet for self-expression, not just for dancers but for audience members. More choreographers are approaching their work with the intention of open interpretation so that the audience is able to take out of the piece whatever is most meaningful to them. I love this approach to the art of dance and choreography, as it makes it much more relatable and available to a wider audience.
PD: Please list any upcoming events, programs, classes or shows that you would like Presenting Denver and our audiences to know about. Thank you!!
CB: If you’re looking for adult ballet classes to take in the Denver-area, Denver Dance Center is a great place to attend. The studio has a friendly, welcoming environment and classes are taught by exceptional teachers.
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