Filmmaker Will von Tagen, choreographer Lauren Edson and the musicians of Edmond Dantes — Andrew Stensaas and Ryan Peck — are collaborating on a full-length ballet they want to produce in the fall of 2015.
It’s an ambitious project with the working title of “This Side of Paradise,” inspired by Zelda and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s famously troubled relationship.
Here’s how it came together: Von Tagen heard Edmond Dantes play at the Record Exchange and asked them to score his movie “The Other Side of September,” that filmed in Boise this past summer. The film features Lee Majors and Terry Kiser and will hopefully hit the film festival circuit later this year.
Von Tagen approached Edson, Stensaas and Peck with the idea for the ballet after seeing Edson’s choreography at an Edmond Dantes record release party in 2013.
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“I was just blown away by what she does,” von Tagen says. (You can watch Edson's choreography reel below.)
Edson, who is married to Stensaas, grew up in Boise and is a former member of the Trey McIntyre Project. She’s been successfully pursuing a freelance choreography career after leaving TMP in 2012. She took a break over the past year and a half to have a baby, Finn, who is now 5 months old. She's been back creating dance and teaching for the past few months, traveling to Texas and California.
She and Stensaas collaborated for her Boise based company Lauren Edson + Dancers, in pieces like “Shatter on the Rocks or Cover Your Ears,” for which Stensaas blended his original music with a soundscape of creaking wood and ocean sounds.
This ballet would take the same approach, with the addition of Stensaas and Peck, performing live on stage with an orchestra.
“We want to integrate the music differently than you would see in a traditional ballet,” Edson says. “It would also features Andrew’s voices and a female vocalist.”
The minimal sets would be enhanced by film projections produced by von Tagen.
“This will be a more contemporary, interactive multimedia performance,” von Tagen says.
Von Tagen and Edson are currently writing the narrative and looking for funding and investors for the project. You'll also see Edson perform with Idaho Dance Theatre and choreograph a new work for Ballet Idaho in 2015.
Watch a clip of Edson's and Stensaas' "Shatter On the Rocks or Cover Your Ears."