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SPRING CONCERTS TO HONOR LATE U. DANCE GRADUATE

SHARE SPRING CONCERTS TO HONOR LATE U. DANCE GRADUATE

The University of Utah's Performing Dance Company will present its spring concert Thursdays through Saturdays, May 10-12 and May 17-19, in the Hayes/Christensen Theatre of the Marriott Center for Dance. The concert will be a tribute to the late Tim Wengerd, a 1969 graduate of the modern dance department.

Programmed works are by dance faculty members Shirley Ririe and Ford Evans (also artistic director of PDC), as well as guest choreographers Mitchell Rose and Paul Taylor.Shirley Ririe's "Banners of Freedom" is her artistic tribute to the courage of people all over the world who are riding the tide of democracy. (Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company was touring in East Germany just a month before the Berlin Wall fell.) Ririe's "Madame X" takes its inspiration from the famous painting by John Singer Sargent; Doug Wolf and the Percussion Ensemble will perform the music.

"Opera Nuova" is a duet choreographed by dance commedian Rose to excerpts from Verdi's "Il Trovatore." Dancers lip-sync the arias while performing "nerd" modern dance. Evans' "Secret Passage" was choreographed last winter and premiered at the American College Regional Dance Festival in Tucson. "The dance is based on a series of ongoing visual images like a wash of color intended to elicit an overall visual and emotional impact," said Evans.

Paul Taylor's "Esplanade," which aired on PBS as part of the "Dance in America" series, celebrates human movement in a beautifully crafted work set to Bach's Concerti in E Major and D Minor. An extremely physical work, it expresses the sheer exhilaration of dance.

At the concert of Thursday, May 17, Linda C. Smith, artistic director of the Repertory Dance Theatre, will deliver a pre-concert dedication to Wengerd. A founder member of RDT, he danced and choreographed with the company for six years before moving on to New York City where he was a member of the Martha Graham Dance Company for 10 years. He danced as an independent artist and soloist from 1983 to 1988, when he became co-owner of a studio in Albuquerque, where he planned to develop dancers for a new company he started there.

The Wengerd family has set up a scholarship fund in his name. Contributions may be sent to Tim Wengerd Dance Fund, Development Office, University of Utah, 804 Park Building, Salt Lake City, UT 84112.