A family in disarray, tempers, frustrations, dissolving relationships, all are present in a show performed by RawMoves.
RawMoves, a contemporary, non-profit dance company founded in SLC, focuses on displaying “raw,” untainted emotion by connecting people “from all walks of life by presenting dance in innovative and diverse ways, through outreach to under-privileged and developing artists...,” as their mission statement explains.
Their newest show, Co$t of Living, Quality of Life, is more than six years in the making. Combining some of their most popular dances, such as Table for Four, House of Timothy and Tea Party at the Morgue, Co$t of Living, Quality of Life is choreographed by Nicholas Cendese and Natosha Washington and performed by Corinne Selena Penka, Eileen Rojas, Jennifer A. Beaumont, Nathan Shaw, Rosy Goodman, Tyler Kunz and Ursula Perry. This group of performers presents the destruction of a family in an unforgettable way. It will be playing at the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center on Oct. 11, 12 and 13 at 8 p.m.
We sent Nic and Natosha some questions about the show, and here's how they responded:
How do you choose who performs?
Natosha: "We've had this company for about nine years now, and our practice has never really been to choose people for their ability first. We look for people that gel and work really well together and that Nic and I work well with. We are usually friends first and then the dancing comes in."
Are any of the dances incredibly difficult?
Both: "Tea Party. It's a female-female duet that was actually composed in 2002, but for this show we have purposely cast two performers that aren't as comfortable with that type of performance as a way to challenge them."
Tell me more about the storyline.
Both: "It's a story about a family going through trials and tribulations. The audience should realize that it's not as important to follow the narrative. The emotions that we present are more important than the story. We've taken a variety of parts of a family life and put them together. For instance we have a couple that's always angry and fights. We have another couple that is very loving and kind. By the end of the 62 minutes, we want the audience to have seen all the different parts of emotion come together in the one beautiful piece."
Why the preference for the every-day objects?
Natosha: "When we were in college, we had a professor who asked us 'How do you get audience members to come to a performance?' There are a bunch of different ways to get an audience to watch, but they need things to connect to. Everybody has a couch, everybody has a table and chairs, everybody knows what family dinner is like. As an artist, it's easy to become too... self-involved. You have to learn to please yourselves, but still keep people in the seats."
Nic: "You have to be careful not to alienate your audience. Give them something immediately recognizable and don't become too self-involved. The everyday objects keep both us and the audience anchored in reality."