By Marc Apter
Washington D.C. (February 3, 2020) – How is fabric used to express the intent and feeling of a dance and how in the world do you create an outfit that allows a dancer the freedom and safety to move as the choreographer intends? The broad range of contemporary dances performed by Chamber Dance Project (CDP) this coming summer in Washington is the challenge faced by Bekah Nettekoven Tello, their long-time costume designer. On February 11 from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm the focus of “Evening with the Artist” will be costume design at the Chamber Dance Project Media Lounge, 700 12th Street N.W., Suite 700, Washington D.C. Each dance is by a different choreographer, each dance with a unique style and intent. Because Chamber Dance Project performs only contemporary ballets, traditional tutus and tights are not an option; Tello must create a whole new fashion vocabulary for each dance. Tickets are $30 from chamberdance.org. Student discount code: STUDENTS10. More information: 202-499.2297.
“How does a costume serve the dance? How does a costume serve the dancer,” asked award- winning choreographer and artistic director Diane Coburn Bruning, founder of Chamber Dance Project. “Find out at an intimate gathering with Bekah on Feb. 11.”
Tello plans to explore some of her more recent costumes. She will open the evening to participation and discussion of the process of dance costume design from measurements to shopping to building to fittings and finally performance. Much of this process will be new for guests to engage with and will leave them with a clearer picture of how costume design comes to fruition.
As with most of Chamber Dance Project’s endeavors, Tello plans to make this evening hands-on. The focus will be on building the costumes for the powerful Chant dance and then moving into the process of development and shopping for this summer’s new dance by Colin Gee.
She may take a few measurements and then invite the attendees to help Google fabric and clothing options within specific parameters. And then onto a quick fitting and demonstration of what needs to be considered when fitting clothing for dance. She will have the Chant costumes and perhaps a few other samples as well.
More about Bekah
Costume Designer and Wardrobe supervisor, Bekah Nettekoven Tello, is in her sixth season with CDP. Her work was first seen in Songs by Cole, followed by Chant and Prufrock, among others. Bekah has a degree in Comprehensive Theatre and MA in Theatre History. She loves to research before beginning any new design project. In addition to her work with CDP, Bekah spent six seasons with The Washington Ballet (TWB) as a wardrobe assistant. While at TWB she has had the privilege of working with designers such as Vandal and Christine Darch, as well as assisting on the build of Septime Webre’s Alice (In Wonderland), The Sun Also Rises, and Sleepy Hollow. It takes all of life to create art, and Bekah is grateful to contribute her bits to the whole.
More About Chamber Dance Project
Award-winning choreographer and Artistic Director, Diane Coburn Bruning founded Chamber Dance Project acting upon her conviction that dance should be a collaboration between dancers and musicians, and that sharing the creative process with audiences would only deepen their experience in witnessing live performances. Since their Washington debut season in 2014 at the Kennedy Center, the company has received enthusiastic critical and audience response.
Chamber Dance Project’s work is a collaboration of outstanding artists and designers creating new works. The company commissions and performs new and contemporary works by outstanding choreographers and composers in collaboration with dancers and musicians (who perform onstage). In this series as well as in open rehearsals, they share the creative process. With their donated ticket and Bring a Child for Free programs, they provide access to those not otherwise afforded the opportunity of live music and dance.
Chamber Dance Project sponsors include Bloomberg Philanthropies, DC Commission on Arts and Humanities, KPMG, Northwestern Mutual, The Share Fund, and Macy’s among others.