The Extended, Evening-Length “Myelination”
The Latest Update
Composers Donovan Dorrance and Gregory Richardson present their new original music at National Sawdust Summer Labs in Brooklyn, NY in July 2017.
This is the first public performance of the these compositions, incorporating improvised tap dance!
Warren Craft, solo tap dance
Nicholas Van Young on drums
Claudia Rahardjanoto on vocals and keys
Donovan Dorrance on piano
and Gregory Richardson on upright and electric bass
Myelination The Live Tap Show Becomes An Album
After premiering the new evening length version of Myelination at City Center’s Fall For Dance Festival in October of 2017, the composers, Donovan Dorrance and Gregory Richardson, decided to make an album to compile and record the music from the show. Free from the constraints of a live performance with dancers and a band, some of the recorded versions have a more produced and electronic vibe to them.
This excerpt, Darkness/Police, features clarinets, electric bass, and vocals by Aaron Marcellus, as well as multiple digital instruments and samples of the Hip Hop group Phony Ppl and Hip Hop pioneer KRS-One.
A Rust Belt Tour
A medley of compositional ideas for the new Evening-Length work, Myelination!
Jose Carlos Cruzata Reve on tenor and soprano sax
Donovan Dorrance on piano, clarinet, and vocals
Gregory Richardson on upright and electric bass, electric guitar, clarinet, and vocals
First demo/rough sketch of new music
Greg and I (Donovan) put together a little piece of music while on tour with Dorrance Dance and filmed it during some downtime before a performance. The timing of the chord changes/shifts aren’t set yet, and both Greg and I are improvising here and there (in fact, Greg is mostly improvising – kudos to him… I’m not that confident!). More music to come soon! Enjoy!
Tap dancer Michelle Dorrance and her company, Dorrance Dance, celebrated the world premiere of her 16-minute Myelination at New York City Center’s 2015 Fall for Dance Festival. Gia Kourlas of The New York Times responded: “Ms. Dorrance has choreographed a glittering closer that needs to have a second life…please, someone, make that happen.” Dorrance Dance intends to make that happen!
In 2017, Michelle Dorrance / Dorrance Dance will develop a new, evening-length version of Myelination, featuring 12 company dancers, 8 musicians, and original music by collaborating composers/musicians Donovan Dorrance and Gregory Richardson. The new work will premiere in either fall 2017 or spring 2018.
A biology term, myelination is the process of a myelin sheath forming around a nerve, allowing nerve impulses to move more quickly. This concept is and will be further manifested within the choreography, as Dorrance creates a dynamic road map of increasingly quick-footed movement that is just as musical as it is visually enticing. To accomplish this, the movement will transition from fleeting duets to powerful segments of the entire ensemble of dancers joining together in shifting formations and delivering fast gusts of unison footwork. It’s about creating powerful pulses of varying energy, sound, and images through both music and the inherently musical art of tap dance.
Michelle Dorrance will work closely with composers/musicians Donovan Dorrance and Gregory Richardson throughout the creation of this piece, starting in November 2016. They will collaboratively expand upon their existing work and flesh out the rhythmic themes to drive both the new score and choreography. Both composers will participate in the majority of Dorrance Dance company rehearsals, while simultaneously working together to develop the score.
This excerpt features Dorrance Dance performing Michelle Dorrance’s”Myelination” with live music at New York City Center’s 2015 Fall for Dance Festival. With original music by Donovan Dorrance and Gregory Richardson (who also double as musicians), this work will serve as a springboard for the new, evening-length “Myelination” planned for 2017. Here, the inherent musicality of the tap dance form is emphasized, framing dancers as musicians constantly in dialogue with the accompanying original score.
Start and End Dates
11/01/2016 — 06/30/2018
New York, New York