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Tamiris, Helen

 Negro Spirituals. 5 solos

Music: Traditional, arranged by Genevieve Pitot*
Length: Each solo approx. 2-3 minutes
Costume: For men, tank top leotard and tights. For women the basic costume is a long sleeved leotard, matching ankle length skirt and ankle length tights. Various other pieces (scarfs, shorter skirts, etc.) are added or removed for each section.
Notation: 1967 (transcribed into LabanWriter in 2001), good quality, score checked and used for restaging many times.
Consultancy: Suggested

[*Public domain: Music in the public domain requires no permission or fees for use.]

Signature pieces of modern dance pioneer Helen Tamiris who performed them for many years. Each solo is a little gem, simple in form, dramatically powerful and dynamically different. All can be danced by a man or a woman or they may be performed as a suite for five dancers. Short, they require study to make them simple and clear. Wonderful experience for students. Audiences enjoy them. Beautiful traditional music. Well written, easy to read.

 Go Down Moses: This requires changing roles from the powerful, commanding Pharoah to Moses who protects, cradles and leads his people.

 Swing Low, Sweet Chariot: Full of undulating rocking and weighted swings on the spot contrasting with earthy, quick and direct excursions to and from the diagonals.

 Git On Board: A cheerful invitation for everyone to come board the train to the Promised Land.

 Crucifixion: Sometimes the performer is the observer and sometimes the one crucified. Somber, tortured, powerful.

 Joshua: Exhuberant, a one man army taking immense pleasure in destroying the walls of Jericho.


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