By Clare Cook
Choreographer for SHOW ME REAL
I started working on Show Me Real over a year ago when I was at a bit of a creative crossroads. I had been performing as a modern dancer around the city and simultaneously getting work as a choreographer in the musical theater industry. As I was splitting time between both worlds, I noticed that while there were some aesthetic and training differences between modern dance and musical theater, the passion for performance remained the same. It got me thinking more about my own dance lineage as well. I didn’t begin as a baby ballerina, I was never Clara in the Nutcracker, nor did I spend hours learning to ‘be a tree’. My first dance performance was a baton-twirling, boogie-woogie tap dance with a smile on my face and sequins on my costume! It was all about the audience, the spectacle and the shine. I can trace my dance line right back the early 1920s' Follies Girls dancing in elaborate costumes with Florenz Ziegfeld at the helm. He turned everyday reality into a dreamland on stage, but underneath all of the sparkles were real women from all corners of the country who were working hard to find success before the footlights.
Whether it’s 1921 or 2012, women in New York City have walked the same stone streets over and over again...headed to class, auditions, rehearsals and day jobs. Florenz Ziegfeld said his Follies productions were "no place for a drone or an idler" and Show Me Real is about the timeless pursuit of the stage and the grit that comes with the glamour. It glorifies the reality of six women from two different time periods who keep pushing forward to those moments when the stars align and the day-to-day reality becomes perfectly fantastical.
Photo Credit: Beowulf Sheehan
To buy tickets or to learn more about Show Me Real go to www.nymf.org/showmereal or call 212-352-3101