By Lewis Whittington
Brianne Scott is premiering her dance piece And All Good Things Are Yours for the BREATH concert series this spring with MM2 Dance Company, where she has danced and choreographed for the past three years. While many dancer-choreographers feel pulled by both roles or look to a time when they will be exclusively creating dance for other dancers, Scott admits she “would prefer just dancing and performing the art of others. But I do enjoying the process of creating and figuring it out. Of course, choreographing gives me a singular voice, so it‘s rewarding from that perspective.
Scott’s reluctance as a choreographer is a bit of a surprise when you see her in the studio, setting her work on the dancers performing this piece. Scott not only seems completely at ease and organized with them, but completely zoned in on the process and the joy of artistic camaraderie.
After a run-through, Scott talked about her experience with the company and development as a dancer.
“I was in college when I auditioned at MM2, this is my third season. Now, I’m out of college and mainly focused on dancing. I previously choreographed for students at a studio. Also, in college, we did student shows and I was able to choreograph. . And I‘ve choreographed for MM2 every year since I started,” Scott said.
Scott has studied “All kinds of dance,” she said, “including jazz, tap, hip-hop, pointe, modern, African dance. and modern, but modern was the best for me,” Scott explained. “I really like finding different crossover points. Once I pick and idea or song, it just starts drops into place with me. I usually don’t change my mind. I’ll edit after I see things on someone else’s body, “ Scott explained.
With ‘And All Good Things Are Yours‘ Scott is using a mix of dance styles of dance, but, she says, can be categorized as modern. She is mixing five music tracks for the score. Scott’s theme for her current work refers to overcoming obstacles to get to a place where one realizes their uniqueness and value in the world, “I took it from my own life. This is about some of my creative thoughts right now and part of getting past negativity.”
“I have a narrative and a main character, who is alone in the beginning – breathing, almost panting, when the other dancers enter and and begin to focus on her.” Scott explained.
“When we started, I asked everyone in the piece what they did physically when they were stressed. Everyone had their own expressions of stress, ranging from biting nails to incessantly touching their neck . I told them to use those movements at various points in the piece and then created different combination incorporating their movement. The middle section is about her interactions with each dancer. In the end, she realizes she doesn’t have to focus on everyone else to find her way.”
Brianne said she has become a social observer, in part based on the demands of day job as a barista in a popular coffeehouse. “I find that as a barista, you tend to focus on everyone. It is a dance in and of itself as everyone naturally moves without thinking about it.”
Scott said that along with discovering a choreographic voice at MM2, the process of creating dance has helped her grow as a dancer as well. “This piece is about the people around me and the surrounding energies and balance I‘ve learned. It examines what elements that are productive and the ways that I can incorporate them in my life. I find as a choreographer I have to relate creatively to everyone I’m working with. Feel their energy and create from it.”
MM2 Modern Dance Company
Spring Preview of BREATH
Sunday, April 6, 2014 at 2:00 PM
The Performance Garage, 1515 Brandywine Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130
Tickets online on DanceBoxOffice.com
Lewis Whittington’s articles on the performing arts have appeared in several print and online publications including The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Dance Journal, The Advocate, Dance Magazine, American Theatre Magazine, Playbill and Stage Directions.