Dance Composition Class to be Presented Outside Museum of Art

Dance Composition Class to be Presented Outside Museum of Art

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

"Dance of the Ray" by Gary Haven Smith. Granite, 49" by 18" by 14"

Art inspires contemplation. And sometimes, that contemplation leads to further creativity as is the case with the stone sculptures gracing the grounds of the Paul Creative Arts Center. Carved by artist Gary Haven Smith ‘73 from granite boulders found near his New Hampshire home, the three sculptures were the inspiration for students in professor Gay Nardone’s dance composition class. 

On Thursday, Nov. 15 at 10 a.m., outside the Museum of Art, the 18 students will present Perpetual Motion,” an original production based on their interpretation of the sculptures. Most of the undergraduates are theater and dance majors but there also is a mechanical engineering major as well as a family studies, an occupational therapy, and a med/vet science major.  

“I usually have the performance in the art gallery but this year, with Gary Haven Smiths’ sculptures in the Mills Courtyard, provides an opportunity to move it outside,” Nardone says.  

This is the first time Nardone has attempted to hold the performance outside. A drummer will accompany three of the numbers while others will have text accompaniments created by the students.  

“This is dance and movement with drums and original text inspired by the sculptures themselves.  The students chose words related to the cut stone sculptures then created poetry and text to accompany their dance and movement,” Nardone says. “They also created dances strictly from the design and texture of the sculptures themselves. The dances exist in time, space and energy with the sculptures as their partners.”

Haven Smith’s work features textures, patterns, and designs inspired by ancient civilizations, symbols, and the geological past. Through his creative process, he explores the complex relationships between the natural environment, cultural history, and recent technology.

 For more information on the Museum of Art visit