Ice Cycle at the Polar Rhythms Festival in New York



Jody Sperling, Time Lapse Dance and Matthew Burtner’s “Ice Cycle” were featured in a run of performances in New York at the University Settlement for the 2016 Polar Rhythms Festival.

Thursday, June 2 at 8pm – Performance, followed by talkback with Burtner and Sperling.
Friday, June 3 at 8pm – Performance, followed by panel on the Arctic, climate and the arts
Saturday, June 4 at 2pm – Performance, followed by children’s workshop
Saturday June 4 from 5-6:30pm – Impacts Hour, curated by Human Impacts Institute (free)
Saturday, June 4 at 7pm – Closing Performance

Speyer Hall, University Settlement
184 Eldridge Street

Global warming meets dance in a program inspired by Jody Sperling’s experience dancing on the melting Arctic icecap. Sperling, who participated in a polar science mission as a choreographer-in-residence aboard an icebreaker, transports the stunning icescape to the stage with her dance company of six dancers. They are joined by Alaskan-born composer Matthew Burtner, a specialist in the music of snow and ice, who will perform his chilling music live. The program features a new evolution of Sperling and Burtner’s collaboration Ice Cycle.

Danced by six women, the piece gels in crystalline formations, as it explores the dynamic interplay of ice and water. Video projections from Sperling’s voyage play upon the dancers white silk costumes transforming their undulating surfaces into icy fractals. Other moments in the piece suggest the unfolding of an eternal horizon and the shimmering manifestation of an aurora.

Visual artists Amy-Claire Huestis and Omar Zubair, who fuse hand-manipulated magic-lantern media with video feedback projections, join Sperling and Burtner for the occasion piece Visions of Ice, a spontaneous light, image, movement and music installation evoking terrestrial ice formations as well as interstellar ones.

The Time Lapse Dancers will also perform a revival of the company’s signature climate-themed work Turbulence (2011), which distills patterns of air disturbance into kinetic sculptural forms.

The Polar Rhythms performances will serve as a springboard throughout the weekend for conversations about the Arctic, climate change and climate solutions. The opening night performance on June 2 will be followed by a discussion with Sperling and Burtner on their experiences working in the Arctic and the changes happening there.

The Friday June 3 performance will be followed by a panel discussion moderated by Sperling with playwright Chantal Bilodeau, author of The Arctic Cycle series of plays, and Arctic scientist Allan Frei, Professor of Geography at Hunter College and expert on the impact of climate change on the NYC water supply. Following the Saturday 2pm matinee, Time Lapse Dance will lead a free workshop for children of all ages combining dance and the science of fluid dynamics. Saturday from 5-6:30pm the public is invited to “Impacts Hour,” curated by Human Impacts Institute. A roster of climate solutions innovators share short presentations on concrete ways to get involved with climate activism now. Doors open at 5pm for a climate mingle, with presentations from 5:45-6:15pm, followed by further networking opportunities.

Time Lapse Dance is an ensemble of six female dancers are Jenny Campbell, Carly Cerasuolo, Lior Daniel, Alejandra Dominguez, Halley Gerstel and Krissy Tate. Costumes are by Mary Jo Mecca and lighting is designed by Bessie-Award winning designer David Ferri.