Welcome to "Meet the Core Dance Staff" - Sharon C. Carelock edition! Over the next few months, I am going to introduce our wonderful supporters to our staff and dancers here at Core Dance. Each individual is unique, and I'm excited to hear everyone's stories. Keep an eye out for many more introductions!
Sharon C. Carelock
Hometown: Marietta, GA
Education/Training: AA in Liberal Arts, Oxford College of Emory University; BA in Dance/Theater, Emory University (Emory College); MFA in Dance, Florida State University; dance festivals where I’m on the crew with Greg Catellier (Come on dude! We’ve only done Bates and ADF. When’s the next one?)
Position: Production Coordinator
Delights: my husband, Bryan; baking; putting together a good outfit; reading; listening to music; making shows
How did you come to Core Dance?
I met Sue in 2009. She needed a sound board operator for the production THREE at 7Stages. From there I started taking morning classes at Core Dance and became an Artistic Affiliate with the Company, stepping into roles in some of the works. In 2011, I said to Sue, “Hey I think I want to do what you do at some point in my life. How do you do it all?” She responded by making me her intern. I left the position in 2012 to go to grad school, then came right back to Atlanta when I graduated. Sue helped me choreographically by commissioning my work Un[Caged] for Off the Edge: Edge in Unexpected Spaces. That’s when I met Jennifer Tarrazi-Scully, my predecessor and a formidable woman who was more than willing to talk all things production with me. Before she left, Scully encouraged me to apply for this position, and I got the job.
What is your favorite part about working here?
We meet artists from many different parts of the world and walks of life. Because I am in production, I generally have to work intimately with them to help bring their visions to fruition. Some of the tasks are daunting, but it’s worth it, well satisfying really, when everything comes together, and I had something to do with that.
What is one of your favorite memories of your time here so far?
So many to choose from…
I guess I can talk about my recent trip to Israel. I saw a lot of dance, at least 50 works, so I got a good definition of what is considered Israeli contemporary dance. What was more interesting was being in the cities of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, walking around, taking in the culture and atmosphere, and eating the food. Those “outside the theater” experiences gave me a bit of an understanding of who the people are and enriched the memories of what I saw onstage.
Israel was great (thanks again to Core Dance for the opportunity). However, I’m really fond of the moments when the staff and company get together for meetings or gatherings. I think we have a cool diverse group of individuals, and I really appreciate what each person brings to the organization.
To read more about Sharon, see her bio on our website: http://www.coredance.org/sharon-carelock.html
Yesterday, I woke with a sore neck and droopy eyelids. (My neighbors have a puppy who just can’t seem to sleep from 2-6am). I was hoping that a class with guest artist Amanda K. Miller would loosen up my muscles and get my body ready for the day, but I didn’t know what to expect from the class entitled “Amanda Science.”
We began in a circle, and Amanda clarified that this was not in fact, a class, but rather an experiment. She instructed us to imagine a hole in the top of our head that allowed air to flow through our bodies. We then imagined holes all over our body, and used the “warm space” from behind our backs to warm up the rest of the space around us. I learned that this space that extended from our back also contains our “Angel Wings,” and we have “Dragonfly Wings” extending from our front space. We explored imagery of spider webs, swimming, lungs on the back of our knees, and more abstract ideas throughout the entirety of the hour and a half experiment. The whole time, we were trying not to be ourselves, and not to choreograph or place our body parts. We allowed our movements to come naturally, and followed the paths that our bodies felt. Although my release felt more mental rather than physical, I definitely left the studio feeling more energized, and ready to take on the day.
While Amanda has taught the morning classes on Thursday and Friday, Polly Motley has continued her ChoreoLab with the Core Performance Company, and today is the last day of her two week workshop. This week, they have continued to work with the ladders and falling and climbing. On Wednesday, they discussed how to prepare others for a fall, and how to determine if a person is deciding to fall. And of course, all of this has to be done safely. Polly praised the dancers for their improvisation and partnering skills, and was very impressed by their risk-taking abilities. After watching the dancers leap off ladders and balance them on their shoulders, she said exactly what I was thinking: “Y’all are brave!”
If you’re curious, come stop by our studios TODAY at 2:30pm for an open rehearsal of Core Performance Company and Polly Motley!
Guest artist, Polly Motley, has been working with the Core Performance Company since this past Wednesday, and I finally had a chance to pop into rehearsal today. From the description of her class, “Singing Body and Voice,” I guessed that there may be some vocal work thrown in with movement, and I was proven right!
“They’re having a ball, and keep surprising themselves!” Kristin, the Rehearsal Director told me, referring to the vocal ranges of the dancers. Polly has been working with the dancers individually to find their highest and lowest note, once even shaking Rose so that her voice vibrated as she hit her highest possible note. Yesterday, the dancers made high pitch noises and let these noises reflect in the joints of their body, allowing their voices to warm up their bodies. (When Kristin said this, I pictured a robot jolting and singing “beep-boop,” but the dancers were much more graceful than that.)
Although I was expecting the singing and speaking exploration, I wasn’t quite prepared for the multiple ladders spread throughout the space. They range from small, medium, to large, or as Phae said today, “That’s a big ass ladder!”
Before the class, the dancers were asked to bring the lyrics of a song they connect to, or a song from their childhood. On Wednesday, Polly had the dancers assign each step of the ladder to a section of that song, and they sang or spoke their song based on the scale they create by going up and down the ladder. This sounds complicated, and I haven’t yet figured out how it works, but I’m excited to see it unfold throughout next week.
Polly also instructs the dancers to avoid the floor once they ascend a ladder, so they have to figure out creative ways to get from one ladder to another. They play with balancing their own body weight on the ladder, and even balancing the ladder on their body parts. And along with balancing, comes falling. Yesterday, Anna fell from high off the fifth rung of the large ladder into the waiting arms of her fellow dancers. Although I’m not afraid of heights, I’m not sure I could have dared that feat.
Next week, Polly will continue working with the dancers, and will offer class to the community on Monday and Wednesday morning, 9-10:30am. Stay tuned for more gravity-defying acts
And of course, please join Core Dance this Sunday for our Fieldwork Showcase at 5pm at the Schwartz Center at Emory University. BUY TICKETS HERE
Barbara Branson, Publications Manager, and the People of Core Dance