Contemporary dance festival spotlights ASU students

This week Tempe welcomes top American choreographers and filmmakers as they present their newest works at Breaking Ground 2013, an annual showcase of elite dance and dance film work.

This contemporary dance and film festival was created to provide opportunities for participants to explore the relationship between the artist and the audience and see how art helps change people's perspectives on the world.

2013 marks the sixth year of Breaking Ground. It was created by Carley Conder, artistic director and founder of local dance studio CONDER/dance.

Conder, along with ASU professor of dance Mary Fitzgerald and several other local choreographers, served as adjudicators for the festival. Their goal was to select pieces that represent the most current perspectives on art and culture. After receiving over 50 submissions, just two dozen routines were selected for the three-day festival.

The selected pieces will be presented over three nights tilted NEXT, NOW I and NOW II. While NEXT was billed as a student-only showcase in previous years, a lack of student submissions this year has caused the program to now feature both professional and student work. Eight routines were selected for NEXT, including a dance choreographed by former ASU student Angel Castro.

Castro, a recent ASU graduate with a BFA in dance, has a double role in the NEXT program during the festival this year. Castro will be presenting his own choreographed work "Angustia" and will also be performing in a separate piece titled "Moving Through," which was choreographed by his friend Jay Bouey.

“This is my first year entering choreography and performing for the Breaking Ground Festival," Castro said. "I am thrilled to be part of the festival this year."

His piece "Angustia," which means anguish in Spanish, was inspired by the way that women cope with everyday stress.

“I wanted to show all the stress and anguish women deal with in order to create athletic, dynamic, high intensity movement that also showed grace,” Castro added.

While primarily a dance festival, Breaking Ground 2013 will also include screenings of two films, "Vias de Vuelo" by Mexican filmmaker Alfredo Salomon as well as the Israeli film, "Love Song," by Simon Birman.

NEXT will be held on campus at the ASU Studio Theater while the other two programs, NOW I and NOW II, will be at the Tempe Center for the Arts.


Reach the reporter at or @juliannemarie25

Get the best of State Press delivered straight to your inbox.