This weekend, CSN presents its 11th annual Dance in the Desert Festival, featuring local and visiting artists and companies representing a variety of disciplines and choreographic visions. Festival director Kelly Roth explains how he sets the program.
How do you pick the performers?
So far we have ruled out companies from studios. Contemporary ballet or modern companies only, no companies requiring unusual technical requirements such as rigging or four inches of dirt on the stage or animal sacrifices.
Do you select the repertory?
We let the individual company directors choose their own works and allow them up to 35 minutes. The goal is to have three completely different shows, so that our audience can attend the entire festival and not see any works repeated.
Do people approach you, or do you recruit companies and dancers?
We had to recruit in the beginning, but now we have grown so much that we disappointedly must turn people away. We are pushing the limits of our ability to present so many artists in such a short time. The limping economy is also adding to the tension, as we have less time, money and fewer human resources with which to produce a growing production. That said, dancers are like cockroaches—they can survive anything!