Inspiration of the Week: “Keeper of the Flame” – Good Dance Since 1984

Marigny Opera House New Dance Festival 2013

Keeper of the Flame
Dancers: Donna Crump , Gabrielle Edgerson , Natalie Nocentelli, Brianna Nowlin, Peryn St. Raymond, Jasmin Simmons
Musicians: Big Chief Brian Harrison Nelson, Guardians of the Flame Maroon Society (vocals and tambourine), Drummer Man Ace (bass drum), St. Rock (acoustic guitar and sticks)
Costume Concept and Design: Donna Crump and Donna Prevost

Keeper of the Flame examines the Mardi Gras Indian Nation from the beginning to what it has flourished into now. The Mardi Gras Indian Culture is a male-dominated culture, so the progression of the piece is depicted from the Big Queen’s point of view. A lot of the traditions and dances started in Africa, and a lot of interpretations of ethnic dancing are present in this work. The dance will take you to the front line of the battling of the gangs or tribes. The Indians battle each other through physical and athletic movement to see who’s suit is the “prettiest”. At the end of the day the Indians battle, but at the end of the day we all come together to form what we call the “Indian Nation”. “Pretty pretty, Big Queens coming through, we won’t bow down, don’t know how!”

Donna Crump, known as “The Donna” is an award-winning choreographer and a native New Orleanian. Upon receiving a B.F.A in dance from Tulane University, the N.O.C.C.A dance alumnus studied with Brazil’s premiere dance company Grupo Corpo. She has performed with her founding company Good Dance Since 1984, The John/Allen Project, The First Physical Theatre in Grahamstown, South Africa, and Tsunami Dance Company. Donna founded Good Dance Since 1984 in February of 2012 and is currently working with the company to provide dance education as well as local, national, and international performance opportunities for the youth and other professional artists. Good Dance Since 1984 has presented work at The Boston Contemporary Dance Festival, The Dances Made To Order online Dance Film Festival, Southern Voices Dance Festival, and The New Orleans Fringe Festival, where 1984’s presentation of Isis & Nephthys earned the company its first Big Easy Tribute to The Classical Arts Award for Outstanding Choreography (New Work). Our belief is that dance starts with a feeling, ends with an action, and lives in the soul.

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