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University of Iowa News Release

Sept. 16, 2005

UI Dance Department Opens Student Series Sept. 29-Oct. 1

The University of Iowa Dance Department will open its 2005-06 series of student performances with an MFA Thesis Concert featuring performances and choreography by graduate students Gretchen Alterowitz and Tom Truss at 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, Sept. 29-Oct. 1, in the Space/Place Theatre of UI North Hall.

The concert will open with Alterowitz and Jenna Riegel dancing the complicated geometry of "in the bend," a duet choreographed by dance faulty member Jennifer Kayle and featuring haunting music by experimental vocalist Anna Homler.

Next will be "rolling over yourself", a quintet choreographed by Alterowitz to music by Tin Hat Trio and Mirah and the Black Cat Orchestra. This work uses fractured and ricocheting segments to create a dreamy atmosphere. It takes up issues of voyeurism and identity using a filmic quality that asks the viewer to enter a bizarre world of contradiction and fantasy. Lighting design is by Mary Weber and costume design is by Alexzandra Caldwell.

Truss' "The Vanishing of Grey" for 13 dancers is a contemporary ballet rooted in a modern vernacular. It examines the role of being an outsider, conformity and choices through a story about a community under pressure. In this case, the pressure is scarcity, and the relief manifests in various ways, from belonging and hiding to rebelling and violence. "The Vanishing of Grey" is set to Bela Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra.

Lighting design for the performance is by William Barbour, who has collaborated with Truss for the past three years. Truss said, "The looks that Willie has created support the themes and music beautifully -- they are harsh, brilliant, angular and lush. The costumes we are wearing are constructed of plastic and morph into magnificent and eerie layers under Willie's lighting. I think we will transport people to another world, one filled with stunning and disturbing images."

Admission to the Alterowitz-Truss Thesis Concert will be $12 (UI student $6; Free admission for children under 12).

Tickets may be purchased in advance from the University Box Office in the Iowa Memorial Union. In addition to window sales at the Iowa Memorial Union, the University Box Office may be reached by phone at 319-335-3041 or toll-free 800-346-4401. The fax number is 319-335-3407. Hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 5-9 p.m. Sunday. In addition to cash and checks, the University Box Office accepts MasterCard, Visa, American Express and Discover cards.

Any remaining tickets will be on sale at the door.

North Hall is located at the north end of Madison Street on the UI campus. It is accessible from both Madison Street and the Anne Cleary Walk. Parking is available in the North Campus Parking Ramp.

The Dance Department is an academic unit of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

For UI arts information and calendar updates, visit To receive UI arts news by e-mail,

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Winston Barclay, 319-384-0073,