For Immediate Release
Impulses Dance Theatre Arts, Inc. Announces New Film “Dancing Without Steps: The Art of Improvisation with Margaret Beals”
New York – October 19, 2022 – Impulses Dance Theatre Arts, Inc. announced the release of “Dancing Without Steps: The Art of Improvisation with Margaret Beals” introduced by National Medal of Art recipient Meredith Monk.
This short documentary represents a life’s journey for Margaret Beals, a solo performer since the 1960s best known for her improvisational artistry in dance and theatre. It is under consideration for art, dance, and women-centric film festivals with a premiere in late 2022.
“Dancing without Steps” ignites a discussion of the power of improvisation to influence dancers and artists in other mediums such as painting, music and poetry through the words and actual footage of Ms. Beals’ pioneering works. Ms. Beals, Jackson Pollock, Keith Jarrett and others reveal their creative process, offering young artists an opportunity to explore the freedom and authenticity of improvisation.
Born in Boston, she self-trained, dancing without steps until the age of 17. Arriving in New York, she had the privilege of studying with luminaries Martha Graham and Jose Limon. In 1976, Olwyn Hughes gave Ms. Beals the rights to choreograph the “Ariel” poems of Sylvia Plath. A three-year National Endowment for the Arts grant enabled her to create Improvisations to Chopin with pianist Thomas Hrynkiv. She also has written and performed two one-woman evenings, The Teak Room, directed by Tony award winner Tony Tanner, and Pathways, directed by Obie Award winner Lee Nagrin. She continues to coach and teach in her New York studio.
Ms. Beals says, “Dancing Without Steps has given me a platform to express the philosophy that has informed my life’s work. Improvisation in performance is like surfing. You must jump in without hesitation and keep swimming.”
About the Film and Film Information
USA 25 minutes
Margaret Beals- Executive Producer and Co-Director
Adriana Davis/D-Squared Media NYC – Co-Director/Production Company
(D-Squared has 25-years’ experience creating documentaries such as “The Last Jews of Baghdad” and 6 others from their Iraqi Jewish series, and narratives including "Play It By Ear” starring Rita Moreno.)
Kathleen Drinane Davis – Associate Producer, Creative Consultant
Impulses Dance Theatre Arts, Inc. previously produced the award-winning film “Impulses.” ©2022, Impulses Dance Theatre Arts, Inc. All Rights Reserved
For more information, go to: https://dancingwithoutsteps.com
About Margaret Beals
Margaret Beals has performed her solo evening, “Margaret Beals in Concert,” appearing at Jacob’s Pillow; the NY Dance Umbrella; the Delacorte Theatre; The Place, London; the International Festival de Danse, Paris; and the Het Theatre Festival, Holland, among other venues. For more information, go to: www.margaretbeals.org
Impulses Dance Theatre Arts
MARGARET BEALS: FILMS and STORIES
May 20-22, all peformances at 7 PM
The Cloud House Studio, 104 West 17th Street, 2nd floor
“What is she? Dancer or actress or both? Poetess and diseuse? A mime who speaks? Painter of portraits in movement? Margaret Beals cannot be classified, catalogued or cubby holed….She does honor to the multiple meanings of a magical word, THEATRE.” Walter Terry
Beals is brilliant at the technique of improvisation. She builds themes, varies them, slides in new motifs, repeats material, almost the way some people choreograph.”
Margaret Beals, dancer, choreographer, pioneer in the art of dance improvisation, and unique theatrical performer, announces three encore performances of her recent sold-out series MARGARET BEALS: FILMS and STORIES, May 20-22, 7 PM, at The Cloud House Studio, 104 West 17th Street. In her characteristically charming and spontaneous style, Beals will introduce and comment on all films, which include performances in studios, theaters and the famous Village nightclub The Bottom Line.
Friday May 20
“STINGS”, a first screening
This is a public screening of the original production of “Stings”, the first dramatization of the Ariel Poems of Sylvia Plath. “Stings” was co-created and co-directed by Margaret Beals and Obie-award winner Lee Nagrin, with acclaimed choreography by Ms. Beals. The videography is by renowned director and choreographer Ping Chong. Rights to the Ariel Poems were given personally to Ms. Beals by Olwyn and Ted Hughes.
Saturday May 21
“An Evening with Edna St. Vincent Millay, Frederic Chopin, and Virginia Woolf”
* “Wild Swans in Epitaph” (1974), choreographed, spoken and performed by Margaret Beals. Poetry by Edna St. Vincent Millay. Film by Peter Powell.
* Dance Improvisations to Chopin (1985) with pianist Thomas Hrynkiv.
* “Seascapes” (1989), choreographed and performed by Margaret Beals. Music composed and played by internationally renowned flutist Judith Pearce. Text excerpted from Virginia Woolf’s The Waves. Direction by Tony-award winning director Tony Tanner.
Sunday May 22
“Margaret Beals Live at the Bottom Line” (1979) – Margaret Beals with jazz pianist Liz Story at the iconic New York downtown nightclub The Bottom Line. Includes Beals’ ingenious “Words!” improvisations.
UPCOMING EVENT FRIDAY JULY 1ST, 5 PM, AT JACOB’S PILLOW
“PillowTalk series: The Art of Improvisation as Performance”, with dance innovator Beals at Jacob’s Pillow Summer Festival, Becket, Ma.