Dancing in the Dark
Performance entertains NST and celebrates resident
STORY AND PHOTOS
BY STEPHEN VRATTOS
Residents gathered in the Towers
Cinema to honor one of
their own Sunday afternoon,
April 29, when Dance Visions
NY performed in celebration of
2nd-generation Isadora Duncan
disciple, Pearl Seligson. Founded
in 1990 by Beth Jucovy, the notfor
profit company, dedicated to
keeping the dances and aesthetic
of Duncan alive, while also presenting
unique original works, did
not disappoint. Nine performers,
including Jucovy, presented two
hours of dance filled with colorful
costumes, introspective narration,
provocative visuals and a variety of
music, spanning the last century,
from classical to blues.
Lifetime performer and Long
Island native, Shirley Romaine,
who’s hosted her own theater program,
“Art Scene”, on Long Island
cable the past twenty years, served
as host, welcoming the audience
and introducing each number.
Romaine studied dancing herself
with Lester Horton on the West
Coast during her fledgling years as
a performer. Her insightful commentary
and captivating delivery
served the perfect hors d’oeuvre to
The costumes were simple, elegant
and a panoply of color, delicately
flowing and draped as to not
hinder, but enhance, the dances.
Against the stark unlit backdrop of
the theater, the vibrant hues burst
onto the stage with each entrance
as they hit the brightness of the
spotlights. While performing the
initial series of works, the artists
incorporated long swatches of
fabric, which they used to extend
each movement into the infinite, as
well as create a feeling of floating.
Great Neck North High School
theater/music student Daisy
Every dance told a story.
Korman sang a beautiful rendition
of 18-Century composer C. W.
Gluck’s “Morning Star” as accompaniment
to one of the pieces. The
multi-talented mezzo-soprano is
also a dance student of Jucovy’s.
The finale was a tour-de-force.
Featuring the entire troupe, the
original piece incorporated the
works of local artist Susan Ruth
Cohen, projected on the cinema
screen, as its backdrop. Sporting
tight, white T-shirts and fitted pants
of various colors, a small band of
the company began the piece, cuddled
together on the stage, their
semi-transparent bodies projected
atop the opening canvas on
the screen. As they “awoke” with
the start of the music, it appeared
as if they were arising from the
art, becoming its living embodiment.
With the dancers upright,
their white tees served an ideal
surface for the projected image
of the art, giving the work three
dimensionality and movement.
As performers entered and exited
with each successive change in
the music, so too did Cohen’s art
morph from one piece to another,
creating breathless chiaroscuro of
Kudos to Vanessa Loo, who ran
the music and lights in the booth.
Ably assisted by a crew of interns
from Great Neck South High
School and overseen by Towers
Cinema projectionist and AV
guru Martin, the savvy Mary Louis
Academy student didn’t miss a cue.
An intimate reception, sponsored
by Greenthal Sales, was held at the
rear of the theater following the
show. According to Jucovy, many of
the dancers also perform with other
troupes, while some wait tables or
have more mundane day jobs, sating
their creative bug as a sideline.
“Beth is very good with assigning
the right pieces to the right personalities,”
explained dancer Vanessa
Ferranti, who works in advertising.
She and fellow trouper Laura
Marciano went to school together
in Huntington, Long Island.
Astonishingly, Marciano performed
while six months pregnant, though
one would have never known had
it not been the tell-tale bump in
her mid-drift. Far from executing
her movements sparingly, Marciano
matched her compatriots leap for
leap, showing no sign of impediment
from her impending bundle
Honoree Pearl Seligson (in gray) stands with Dance Vision NY Founder
Beth Jucovy (center) and narrator Shirley Romaine (in black) surrounded
by the troupe.
Dancing for two! Laura Marciana (center) performed
Moments of beauty. at six months pregnant.
52 NORTH SHORE TOWERS COURIER ¢ June 2018