Loopdiver: the Journey of a Dance

Air Date: 08/13/2010

The half-hour documentary follows the creative efforts of company members over a two year period as they struggle with the extreme physical and emotional demands of creating an experimental new work.

“I think for the first year and a half, we were really struggling. We knew something was there. We were moving the pieces around, but we hadn't found the fit yet.”
Dawn Stoppiello, Co-Artistic Director, Troika Ranch

The development of “loopdiver” begins with a simple idea: to explore the concept of loops.  Real-life inspiration comes when company members visit a rehabilitation hospital and see first-hand the repetitive motions patients perform in an effort to regain mobility and function.  As the team witnesses "the looping" among the rehabilitation patients, it has a dramatic impact on the creative work.

“the feelings that we felt in rehearsal where people didn’t want to come or you felt some level of anger cause you’re asking them to do this really hard thing… that’s where we started to find the piece and what it was about.”
Mark Coniglio, Co-Artistic Director, Troika Ranch

As the idea of the piece takes shape, the performers struggle to learn the complicated choreography.  Company member Morgan Cloud gives himself whiplash several times while learning the piece, “this is not something that's very common, this kind of loop process. It's like making a completely new way of making movement."

Out of this experience, Troika Ranch creates loopdiver, a live, avant-garde multimedia dance work for six performers that interweaves looped choreography, music, interactive visuals and lighting in an effort to explore the challenges of breaking free of the loops and patterns people encounter in everyday life.

“It's definitely made me think about these loops that I live in my life. And I don't know how well I'm able to change them but I can recognize them. And I realize it is part of everyone's life.
Lucia Tong, Performer, Troika Ranch

The program travels with the company to Berlin, Germany, and follows their artistic residency in Lincoln, Nebraska, as they create and perform this difficult and emotionally powerful new dance work.

Production of loopdiver: The Journey of a Dance was made possible by a grant from the Association of Performing Arts Presenters Creative Campus Innovations grant program, a component of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.  Additional funding provided by the Cooper Foundation, Hixson-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts and the Lincoln Community Foundation.