Dance Festival 2018 | Denver Dance Photography

Denver is getting its very own Dance Festival next summer! Presenting Denver is hosting the Presenting Denver Dance Festival with The Newman Center in June 2018 and I am so looking forward to it! The jurors are deciding what companies will perform as I write this. As a Presenting Denver ambassador, I serve on the festival committee that is planning the two day event. I also serve as a photographer ambassador, along with Amanda Tipton.

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In preparation for the announcement of the festival, Amanda, Leslie Merrill, a Presenting Denver videographer ambassador, and I did a photo shoot at the Exdo Event Center with local dancers who volunteered for the shoot. We photographed three sets of dancers, in stations. We each photographed each dancer or company separately and then we had them collaborate together.

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These photos are from the first set of dancers, Michelle Bernier and Cali Nass. Michelle is a contemporary dancer, while Cali does hip hop and modern fusion dance. It was so fascinating to see these two dancers, who had never met, and had completely different dance styles, improv and collaborate together. They made some pretty incredible photos!

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Exdo was the perfect location for this photo shoot. We had access to the main indoor space all day, and the outdoor space, in the morning. The light and textures inside was so diverse and fun to play with. It changed throughout the day which gave each dancer a different look to their photos. For the collaboration part of the day, we went outside, in the graffitied alley behind the Exdo Event Center. When we were there, new murals were being painted, so the images had a cool “work in progress” feel to them.

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com

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Presenting Denver Dance Festival | Denver Dance Photography

Denver is getting its very own Dance Festival next summer! Presenting Denver and The Newman Center are co-hosting the Presenting Denver Dance Festival. The Festival will take place in June of 2018 and I could not be more excited! As a Presenting Denver ambassador, I serve on the festival committee that is planning the two day event. I also get to serve as a photographer ambassador, alongside Amanda Tipton.

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Here’s what Presenting Denver has to say about the festival.

“The 2018 Presenting Denver Dance Festival, co-presented by Presenting Denver and The Robert and Judi Newman Center for the Performing Arts, will be a compilation of world premieres by performing artists, dancers, and choreographers living in the state of Colorado. It will take place on June 23-24, 2018. Selected new works will be premiered in the Byron Theatre. There will be additional dance activities over the weekend and throughout the year. Tickets for the Presenting Denver Dance Festival go on sale November 6, 2017, on the Newman Center Presents website.”

I was just at the Newman Center for an event this morning and I was reminded of what a beautiful space it was. I cannot wait to see the festival hosted there!

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In preparation for the announcement of the festival, Amanda, Leslie Merrill, a Presenting Denver videographer ambassador, and I did a photo shoot at the Exdo Event Center with local dancers. We photographed three sets of dancers, in stations. These images are from when Samba Colorado and Abby Bural came in for their photoshoots. Abby is a Jazz and Lyrical dancer and Samba Colorado is a Brazilian Dance company. Photographing everyone together was really fun. Together, they found a way to combine their styles and work together.

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? I would love to help tell your story through photos. Contact me here or message me at jamie@jamiekraus.com

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At A Crossroads Rehearsal | Denver Dance Photography

Park Hill Dance Academy’s At A Crossroads dress rehearsal was just beautiful. A couple months earlier, we did a promotional creative session for this show, which was so much fun. Park Hill used those photos to promote the show on social media, and one of the images was used for the show’s poster. The student’s parents were so excited. Many of them helped out at the promo shoot and some of them came to watch the end of the dress rehearsal too.

At A Crossroads was performed at the Vintage Theater in Aurora, Colorado. In the first half of the show, all the students and a few company members danced together in a beautiful, moving piece. Some parts were performed by the younger students, some by the older students, and in some parts, everyone was dancing together on stage. It was really great to see students from different classes coming together for the show. I loved that they all had their lace dresses in different colors as well.

The second half of the show was comprised of multiple, shorter pieces, some by the Academy students and some by the company members. Each piece brought a different emotion to the show and they all complimented each other well. This second half started off with the slower, more melancholy feel of the first half, but got gradually more joyful and vibrant. By the end of the show, everyone was on stage, in fun, bright colors and having a big dance party. One of my favorite pieces, was lit by tiny candles the students held in their hands and danced with. (Don’t worry, they weren’t real candles.) It created a really beautiful glow.

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? Send me a message at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through photos.

Stepping Out | Boulder Dance Photography

A few months ago, I had the opportunity to photograph a show by one of the biggest dance companies in the area. Boulder Ballet‘s show “Stepping Out” was a joyful, vibrant work. I was asked by Eli Akerstein to photograph the show alongside him. It can be very helpful to get a couple different perspectives at a dress rehearsal. I sat up in the seats, in the center to get lots of wide shots of the show, while Eli was up close, getting some interesting angles.

This show was a world premier of contemporary works. There were three pieces and they were each uniquely different from each other. The first piece was a light, classical piece full of pastels and fun interactions. This piece was accompanied by live music from Prokofiev’s Classical Symphony. The last piece was bright and upbeat, with an Irish vibe to it. There was lots of plaid and even some Irish step dancing.

While I normally gravitate toward anything vibrant and colorful, the second piece was my favorite. It was moody. It was emotional. It was dark, full of tension, and had the perfect amount of weirdness. It was set to an original piece of electronic music called Light Fandango created by Robert North. As much as I love color, weird is my favorite and when it comes to dance photography, tension is everything.

This show had something for everyone and definitely left you feeling happy, which was the whole point. The artistic director, Ana Claire, spoke before the show and noted that “Stepping Out” was created to bring joy to an emotional time post-election, without ignoring the problems at hand. I think it did a wonderful job and it certainly lifted my spirits.

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Want engaging production photos to reach new audiences and sell more tickets? Send me a message at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through photos.

Amber on the High Line | New York Dance Photographer

The last time I was in New York City, I reconnected with a few friends from Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. I did dance sessions with three of them while I was in town and Amber was the last dance session I did before heading home. It was a little chilly, so we met in the Chelsea Market to look over outfits and plan everything out. Then, we went up to the High Line to start shooting!

The High Line is such an awesome urban trail. It’s an industrial/nature walk built on the old elevated train tracks and runs through Chelsea in Manhattan. The last time, I was there, they had only finished the first couple sections of it. The last part goes up to the water and overlooks a rail yard. It was really cool to see the whole thing completed.

Amber did an amazing job at this session. Of course, I knew she would because this isn’t the first time I’ve photographed her. She was my student spotlight during the Contemporary Program at Jacob’s Pillow. Check out that session here! These sessions were two and a half years apart so it was amazing to see her again and see how she’s grown as an artist.

In that time, she has graduated from Julliard and founded a dance non-profit, Art Belongs to People. She also just finished her role in the Cirque du Soleil show “Paramour” on Broadway. I got all sorts of gossip about life as a Broadway dancer. And she was learning some aerials skills from the other dancers while she was there. What an awesome woman!

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Want engaging dance portraits for you or your company? Find out more about Creative Sessions and email me at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through dance and photography.

 

At A Crossroads Promo | Denver Dance Photography

One Sunday morning in February, about a dozen kids and a bunch of adults woke up at the crack of dawn and started running through the middle of the street. Did they all go crazy? Was there something in the water? Nope. They were just dancers.

Park Hill Dance Academy and I planned out this elaborate dance creative session to promote their show, At A Crossroads (get tickets here!). We wanted to convey that theme of being at a crossroads in life, of decision making and turning points.

Production photography is important for a new show (check out the photos from the dress rehearsal here). They are great for press, future marketing, and for your dancer’s portfolios. Promo sessions, however, are essential marketing pieces for an upcoming show or event. They can be used before the show opens, to attract more audience members and increase hype around the piece. Since these can be done much farther in advance than rehearsal photos, they can have a greater effect on ticket sales.

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Mary Chase Doll is one of the the guest choreographers for this work and she had the idea to do the photo shoot at the intersection by the dance studio. We had parents pushing the crosswalk buttons and watching for cars. I was up on a huge ladder, and Mary was shouting directions at the dancers from off camera. It was really fun to see everything come together to create Mary’s vision for the poster. The final poster turned out beautifully!

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We all had a super fun morning and got some really cool photos! I always love the behind the scenes shots too. You can see a behind the scenes video my assistant took, on my Instagram and Facebook feeds! Here are a few of the dancers practicing their moves and Karlyn talking to her students.

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Want engaging dance portraits for you or your company? Find out more about Creative Sessions and email me at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through dance and photography.

Aerial Dance in Colorado Springs | Colorado Dance Photographer

I have always wanted to do an urban aerial dance session, so when Sadie and I met up for our photo shoot in Colorado Springs, we started wandering around the city looking for a place to set up. Well, it turns out the cops weren’t as excited about our idea. We started by going to a fire house and asking if they could help up with our project. They said no, so we kept searching. We finally found the perfect bridge to suspend the silks from and just as Sadie was finished tying all the knots and making sure they were secure, the police pulled up. They kindly told us to leave so we went to a nearby park instead. At the park, there was a really cool, vine-covered structure so we set up there. Before ending our session, Sadie did some dancing on land as well.

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Want dance portraits that show off your creativity? Find out more about Creative Sessions and email me at jamie@jamiekraus.com. I would love to help tell your story through dance and photography.