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University of Iowa News Release


Feb. 2, 2007

'Dances With Maia,' Feb. 16-18, Is Part Of UI Scandinavian/Nordic Festival

The Maia Quartet from the University of Iowa School of Music and faculty from the UI Dance Department will collaborate to present "Dances with Maia" at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Feb. 16 and 17, and at 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 18, in the recently renovated Space/Place Theatre in UI North Hall. The performances are part of the quartet's month-long Scandinavian/Nordic Fest.

Dance faculty members Charlotte Adams, Eloy Barragán, George de la Peña and department chair Alan Sener have created choreography to compositions by Béla Bartók, Ludwig van Beethoven, Dmitri Shostakovitch and Edvard Grieg. The Maia Quartet will perform these works live at the events.

Currently the faculty quartet-in-residence at the UI School of Music, in Iowa City, the Maia Quartet members are Tricia Park, violin, Zoran Jakovcic, violin, Elizabeth Oakes, viola and Hannah Holman, cello.

Adams' "Neti, Neti" is set Beethoven's String Quartet in E Minor, op. 59 no. 2. Adams said, "To me the music has a humorous quality, countered by an undercurrent that seems dark or weirdly off-center, that originally drew me to this particular work. The music conjures up rich movement images that contain a sense of playfulness but with a sinister twist."

"Argot Within" was choreographed by Sener to Bartók's String Quartet No. 3. Sener says, "I like the writer Bruce Sterling's definition of 'argot' as 'the deliberately hermetic language of a small knowledge clique.' The score is incredibly complex and although the melodies are interrelated, flow is interrupted oftentimes with harsh and imposing extenuating circumstances, seemingly unplanned, random occurrences. The piece demands your full attention, concentration and active involvement . . . how some believe life should be lived."

De la Peña says of "Mine eyes have Seen," set to Shostakovich's Sixth Quartet, "I was fascinated by the creative life of Dmitri Shostakovich and his relationship with Stalin's regime. Shostakovich was often in disagreement with what was going on politically in the Soviet Union and he had to be careful as to the type of art he created in order not to confront Stalin's infamous wrath. Shostakovich deeply resented this repression of artistic expression. My piece is inspired by his dilemma."

"Endure" is Barragán's response to Grieg's String Quartet in G minor, Op. 27. "The passion of Grieg's music brought images from my childhood back to me," Barragán says. "As a young boy I was extremely nervous and fearful of my elementary school teacher. My anxiousness caused me to falter in my speech, and my teacher nearly convinced my parents that I was 'slow.' This was immensely traumatic for me. It made me fight to overcome her assertion, and to embrace life unconditionally. This ballet explores the emotions within the struggle for understanding and survival."

Tickets are $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 1-800-346-4401. 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 Scandinavian/Nordic Fest is a collaborative project of the Maia Quartet and other campus organizations, including the UI School of Music, the Department of Dance, the Department of Theatre Arts and the School of Art and Art History. The week of Feb. 12-18 will also feature the screening of a film by Swedish director Ingmar Bergman and recitals and master classes by Norwegian pianist Einar Røttingen and flutist Gro Sandvik, a UI visiting faculty member from Norway.

A complete schedule of Scandinavian/Nordic Fest events is online at

Events in the Scandinavian/Nordic Fest are supported in part by grants from the University of Iowa/Ida Cordelia Beam Distinguished Visiting Professorships Program, Humanities Iowa, Iowa Arts Council and Chamber Music America.

The School of Music and the Dance Department are academic units of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

For information on UI arts events, visit on the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at To receive UI arts news by e-mail, go to, click the link "Join or leave the list (or change settings)" and follow the instructions.

OTHER INFORMATION: The full schedule of Scandinavian/Nordic Fest events during the week of Feb. 12-18 will be:


-- 8 p.m., Clapp Recital Hall. Einar Røttingen, piano.


-- 12:30 p.m., Harper Hall, Voxman Music Building. Chamber music master class by Einar Røttingen. Free.

-- 1:30 p.m., Harper Hall, Voxman Music Building. Piano master class by

Einar Røttingen. Free.

-- 7 p.m., Room 240, Art Building West. Ingmar Bergman's Winter Light, with live music. For more information, see:


-- 8 p.m., Clapp Recital Hall. Gro Sandvik, flute, and Einar Røttingen, piano.


-- 8 p.m., Space/Place Theater. Dances with the Maia, featuring the UI Dance Department with the Maia Quartet.


-- 10:30 a.m., Iowa City Public Library. Hans Christian Andersen Family Concert with the Maia Quartet, Jody Hovland and Kidspectacular.

-- 8 p.m., Space/Place Theater. Dances with the Maia.


-- 3 p.m., Space/Place Theater. Dances with the Maia.

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,

PHOTOS of the Maia Quartet are available at