Artists collaborate for climate

BEND+LIKE+A+WILLOW%E2%80%94Student+dancers+participating+in+the+CO%2FLAB+Collective+production%2C+%E2%80%9CWhat+We+Leave+Behind%3A+Addressing+Climate+Change+Through+Dance%2C%E2%80%9D+commune+with+nature.

BEND LIKE A WILLOW—Student dancers participating in the CO/LAB Collective production, “What We Leave Behind: Addressing Climate Change Through Dance,” commune with nature.

Akasha Khalsa

Seeking to promote awareness of climate change through artistic expression, a new lecture, dance, multimedia and live music collaborative performance by the CO/LAB collective is coming to the Forest Roberts Theater (FRT).

“What We Leave Behind: Addressing Climate Change Through Dance” will kick off on Nov. 7 and will run through Nov. 9, with original choreography by CO/LAB Collective Creative Director Jill Grundstrom. Music will be performed by OM (Open Mind), and a presentation by Public Relations Associate Professor Jessica Thompson will also be included. 

Auditions for dancers occurred in August, and callbacks were in September. Artists have been working since then to bring the production to the FRT stage.

“Working on What We Leave Behind has been one of the most gratifying and challenging experiences to date,” Grundstrom said in a press release. “I feel as though we have a unique opportunity through this production to present an important message about our future on this planet in an empowering way. ”

Grundstrom does not intend the collaboration to evoke primarily gloomy emotions, even though the topic of climate change is a heavy one. The performance is merely intended to provoke a conversation about the subject by interfacing with it through several artistic media, Grundstrom said.

The new CO/LAB Collective group includes 34 individuals at NMU who come together to create productions involving dance, multimedia and other forms of art to “create positive change” and engage in a global conversation, Grunstrom said.

“Personally, this creative collective has been a goal of mine for a very long time; it’s so much more than a dance company,” Grundstrom said. “Dance is certainly an art that can stand alone, but is so much more impactful when partnered with other artists, creators, scientists or entrepreneurs.”

Ticket prices are $17 for general public, $12 for faculty/staff, seniors and military, $10 for non-NMU students and $5 for NMU students. 

Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. There will also be a Theater for All performance at 1 p.m. on Nov. 9 which will be slightly altered from the original to be sensory-friendly for audience members on the autism spectrum.