*Jane Franklin Dance performs at the Athenaeum, a gallery of fine arts and a performance venue in Alexandria VA, brought to you virtually on Zoom
In conjunction with the January 14 – February 21 Athenaeum Exhibition, Michael Spears | The Sight of Rhythm and Melody, Jane Franklin Dance explores the physical connection to space, and the emotions shaded by light, surroundings and song. With mobile webcams , small areas of the gallery are isolated as a nod to social distance. The physical boundaries, a spiraling metal staircase, a closed doorway, a window looking out toward S. Lee Street, a sliver of space left ajar are outlined by movement, a response to limitation or freedom. Music is by the singer-songwriter duo Luna, Valeria Stewart and Kathleen Huber.
Michael Spears’ work, inspired by R&B, motivates dances that react to his “Untitled” series. Spears’ process is a visual response to rhythm and melody. Jane Franklin Dance juxtaposes dancers with five early works that generate hope and a positive message for a better tomorrow. Spears spoken words describing his inspiration and process are woven into the sound score. The music, by Future Prospect, a Richmond based band is from their 2016 debut album “The Climb” and features saxophonist Trey Sorrells.
Jan 30 at 7:00 pm: registration link coming soon
Tickets: FREE with donations accepted ($10 suggested minimum to help JFD and NVFAA)
*donations of $20 and above receive a free viewing code for a Vimeo on Demand performance
About the Athenaeum | Northern Virginia Fine Arts Association:
The Athenaeum Gallery is open Thursday to Sunday 12pm to 4 pm
The Athenaeum Gallery is the headquarters of the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Association (NVFAA). Founded in 1964, the NVFAA is dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in all forms of art, and to establishing programs that will enrich the cultural life of Northern Virginia and the surrounding metropolitan area. The Athenaeum Gallery exhibits work created solely by artists living or working in the region and strives to present visitors with a wide variety of excellent work and unique experiences.
Luna is the acoustic duo of Valeria Stewart and Kathleen Huber. They are 2019 and 2020 Mid Atlantic Songwriting Award Winners. Their passion for songwriting is fundamentally an extension of their desire to connect with others. Songwriting, and performing compositions for others, is their way to communicate their deeply held belief that we ARE all connected, that our actions DO matter, that when the muse arrives, she intends to be heard by everyone, not just those who are listening for her thinly veiled whisper. Their music is quiet and thoughtful, accessible, welcoming, gentle, and healing.
Luna’s new October 2020 EP, The Alchemist’s Journey is streaming on all platforms (see link): https://lunamusic.hearnow.com
About Trey Sorrells
Trey L. Sorrells, a native of Portsmouth, VA, is a saxophonist and music teacher based in Washington DC. Currently, Sorrells holds the saxophone position in Richmond based band, Future Prospect. As an emerging band on the scene, Future Prospect has already begun to make its mark with its high-energy and intricate sound. In 2016, they released their debut album The Climb on the Ropeadope Recording Label which peaked at #6 on the iTunes Jazz Charts. In their short time as a band, they have had the pleasure of backing a plethora of noteworthy artists and opening for internationally acclaimed artists and bands. This includes names such as Jon Bibbs, Kia Bennett, Sam Reed, Braxton Cook, Butcher Brown, No BS Brass Band, Galactic, Kneebody, amongst others.
About Michael Spears
Michael Spears, an abstract artist, describes his music belief euphemistically as “wide-eyed wonder!” He says, “Music is arguably the best characteristic of humanity.” Born in Bristol Virginia in 1946, Spears received his BFA magna cum laude from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2009. Since then he has dedicated his oeuvre to the visual interpretation of rhythm and melody.
Spears calls his pieces “Visual Music,” recently creating a body of new works on: The Influence of Religion in Rhythm and Blues of the 60’s and 70’s. For his creative process Spears used his defining music juxtaposed with lyrical and black church symbolism. Recently the debut of these pieces was in a solo exhibition at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts. To highlight his new works by way of a flavorful moment, Spears used his artist talk to bring forth R&B music intertwined with an interactive patron format. His exploration of other musical genres is inevitable with jazz in Spears’ immediate path.