Dancers turn the Schuylkill into an ‘Invisible River’

Aerial dancers will swing beneath Strawberry Mansion Bridge during "Invisible River." Credit: JJ Tiziou/ www.jjtiziou.net
Aerial dancers will swing beneath Strawberry Mansion Bridge during “Invisible River.”
Credit: JJ Tiziou/ www.jjtiziou.net

Seen from the proper vantage point, the Schuylkill River can be one of Philadelphia’s loveliest, most bucolic settings. But as choreographer Alie Vidich points out, the banks along Kelly Drive aren’t always the best place to take in that view. “There’s always a sense of being rushed,” she says, “with all the joggers and runners along Kelly Drive. Even the river itself often has a frenetic pace because of all the boating activity.”

On the next two Sundays, Vidich hopes to change people’s perspective on the Schuylkill and their relationship with it in “Invisible River,” the latest performance piece by her dance theater company, Alie & The Brigade. The piece will greet visitors with a carnival of colorful animal sculptures created by artists from SpArc Philadelphia, a program for people with cognitive, intellectual and developmental disabilities. An ensemble of nine singing dancers will perform composer Elliott Harvey’s choral compositions while, in the distance, a pair of aerial dancers swing beneath Strawberry Mansion Bridge.

“We want to slow down the sense of time that you naturally feel when you’re in that area,” Vidich says. “Even though the piece is spectacle, it doesn’t have a quickness to it. We’re trying to create an environment that asks whether this frenetic pace that we constantly operate on reflects back on how we look at the environment around us.”

After the performances, Vidich will speak to the audience about her hopes for an annual performing arts festival on the Schuylkill. Food will be available from Cosmic Cafe and Little Baby’s Ice Cream.

This is not the first time Vidich has ventured out onto the Schuylkill. In 2010 and 2011, she explored local history in works that took audience members into the water on canoe journeys. While viewers will stay on dry ground for this piece, Vidich still hopes to awaken awareness of the river and to advocate for swimming access to its waters. “I look at the rivers that are on both sides of our city,” she says. “We have so few recreational opportunities that aren’t walking, jogging or running, and boating is a very expensive sport for people to partake in. So for me, this is about psychologically reconnecting to your environment.”

 

“Invisible River”

June 16 and 23

Strawberry Mansion Bridge

Audience parking at 2200 Kelly Dr.

Free

www.alieandthebrigade.org

 

 


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Memorial held for Sean Collier, MIT police officer…

More than 1,600 people gathered at MIT on Friday for a memorial service for Sean Collier, the police officer shot to death a year ago in the aftermath of the…

National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox defeat Orioles, 4-2

Brock Holt the difference in the Red Sox' win

NHL

NHL video highlights & analysis: Red Wings dump…

NHL video highlights & analysis: Red Wings dump Bruins in Game 1

MLB

MLB video highlights: Orioles top Red Sox, 8-4…

John Lackey roughed up for second straight outing

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox score two in…

Lester shines in Red Sox win over White Sox

Parenting

How to parent without gender stereotypes in a…

Christia Spears Brown, Phd. author of "Parenting beyond Pink & Blue" gives advice on raising kids free of gender stereotypes.

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.