Can you take ballet off stage?
Performing arts generally require a stage, often an elaborate stage. In a way, that isolated environment allows the artists to create the magic they do on stage. In a ballet performance, the dancers effortlessly move, fly, jump, with the comfort that makes the performance magic. While a stage is more or less a prerequisite for this magic to occur, it removes the characters from where they might actually live, move, love, hate in a more natural environment.
Starting with this idea, Vilia Putrius and I started a project early in 2013 to photograph 12 dancers acting the part from 12 ballets in settings that go along with the storylines. Later, I named the collection Ballet Off Stage and the photographs were shown one evening at the Festival Ballet Providence studios as a fundraiser for the company.
The project took us to many different parts of Rhode Island; from a small wooded area in Barrington to the windmill in Middletown; from an old mill in Pawtucket, to several historic houses in Pawtuxet Village; from a lake in Johnston, to the Swan Point Cemetery, and more. The participating dancers were all from Festival Ballet Providence and they certainly gave their full effort and then some to make each photo session a success. Here are the members of the Ballet Off Stage project:
A. Cemal Ekin – Vilia Putrius, Primary Collaborators
James Turner, Photography and Location Assist
|Elizabeth Mochizuki||Louisa Chapman|
|Kara Gentile||Lauren Sylvia|
|Eugenia Zinovieva||Kirsten Evans|
|Emily Loscocco||Brenna DiFrancesco|
|Ruth Bowens-Whitney||Jennifer Ricci|
|Jamie DeRocker||Vilia Putrius|
Thanks to all dancers for their participation and thanks to
James Turner for his great support
Additional thanks are due to Mindaugas Bauzys, Polly Barey, Ginny Leslie, Jeanne H. Knowles, Donna & John Ricci, Gregory Roy, Pippin Orchard, Pawtuxet Armory, Roger Williams Park, Hope Artiste Village, and Festival Ballet Providence.
If you were at the Collaborations event on October 5, 2014, you got a chance to see the large prints, sublimated on metal with great presence and depth. Below is the full collection for you to view for the first time or once again after the fundraiser event. These photographs are available for purchase, each is 16″ x 24″ except one Carmen photograph which is 12″ x 24″.
They are all printed using sublimation on metal. If you are interested in purchasing any, please contact me to place an order. They are priced at $500 each. Pigment on archival paper prints, 9″ x 13.5″ on larger paper are also available with no matting or framing, they are $200 each. (Please allow several days for paper, and about a week for sublimation on metal prints.)
Additionally, I have designed a 2015 Ballet Off Stage Calendar which you can order in any quantity you like, $20 per calendar. Orders 20 or more will receive an automatic discount. It has wire binding on the top short edge and holes for hanging the calendar on a small, headless nail. Not all the photographs in the exhibit collection are in the calendar but several images in the calendar are not in the exhibit collection. The 11″ x 17″ calendar is printed on heavy, premium cover stock with Wire-O Binding which presents a rich format that strongly features the characters/dancers in their natural environments.