Rhythmically Speaking 2016 is a wrap! Keep in touch with us by subscribing to the RSS feed of this website or following us on Facebook. More coming soon about what’s next!

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RS 2016 – SHOW WEEK/ Meet the Choreographers #7 – Laura Selle-Virtucio!

It’s here! Rhythmically Speaking 2016 opens the Thursday, August 18th, at 7:30pm at the Southern Theater in Minneapolis. For details on directions, to buy tickets and more, visit our show page.

AND . . . meet Laura Selle-Virtucio, our seventh feature out of the seven choreographers who are presenting work in this weekend’s show:

Zenon-All Parts Are Welcome by Morgan Thorson-Photo by William Cameron-Dancer_Laura Selle Virtucio

Photo by Bill Cameron.

Laura Selle Virtucio | has performed with several Minneapolis-based companies since receiving her BFA in Dance at the University of Minnesota in 1999. She has been with Shapiro & Smith Dance for nearly 15 years, performing, serving as rehearsal director and restaging the company’s repertory across the country. She spent 10 years with Stuart Pimsler Dance & Theater and four years with Zenon Dance company, in addition to performing with Black Label Movement. She also currently dances for choreographer Chris Schlichting. She is the recipient of a 2007 McKnight Fellowship for Dancers and a Sage Award for Best Performer, as well as recognition from City Pages as Best Dancer of the Year 2001.  Laura teaches modern and jazz dance at the St. Paul Conservatory for the Arts, and has served as adjunct faculty at the University of Minnesota, St. Olaf College, and Gustavus Adolphus College.  When she’s not dancing, she’s playing trains with her awesome toddler, Silas.

Come catch Laura’s work and that of six other fantastic jazz, rhythm-driven and vernacularly-inspired choreographers at Rhythmically Speaking 2016 this weekend!

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RS 2016: Meet the Choreographers #6 – Karla Grotting!

Meet Karla Grotting, our sixth feature out of the seven Rhythmically Speaking 2016 choreographers! The show is next week, people!

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Karla Grotting | is a dancer, choreographer, educator, and producer working with a unique blend of jazz, tap, modern, and percussive dance techniques. She is founding member, principal dancer, and artistic associate with Joe Chvala’s The Flying Foot Forum, and has performed with companies such as Jazzdance: by Danny Buraczeski, MN Jazz Dance Co,  Keane Sense of Rhythm, Off-Leash Area, The Eclectic Edge Ensemble, and FTF Works. Karla has been on faculty with the University of Minnesota Department of Theater and Dance since 1998, and a guest artist and instructor at St Olaf College since 2014. She has created dance works for Gustavus Adolphus College,  St Olaf College, UW-Whitewater, Macalester College and others. Her project Lost Voices in Jazz: The Choreographers of the Minnesota Jazz Dance Company was recognized with the Sage Award for Outstanding Performance in 2015.

Looking forward to the show and want to help out? We need a few good volunteers! You’d help usher and hand out programs in exchange for seeing the show! Contact if you are interested!

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RS 2016 – Meet #5 – Erinn/ Like What We Do?!

Now less than a month away, Rhythmically Speaking 2016 is really ramping up! Like what we do and want to directly support the 2016 choreographers who are offering this year’s thought-provoking, rhythm-driven work? 

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Visit our GiveMN page and make a quick, easy and secure donation! All proceeds go directly to our 2016 choreographers.

Now, meet Erinn Liebhard, RS Artistic Director. She has a piece in the show, but also performs, produces, production manages and helps curate it! She is immensely proud of what this project has grown into from it’s humble beginnings eight years ago, and is looking forward to offering another great production this year!

Day 1 - 2012 - Sifting 7 (Heather Gray)

Erinn Liebhard | (BFA University of Minnesota, MFA University of Colorado Boulder) is a dance artist that makes opportunities for people to experience the embodiment of music, with a specialty in jazz and the American vernacular and efforts focused on teaching, performance and scholarship. An active educator, she has a wide array of experience in settings as varied as private studios, public education programs and colleges, and is currently on faculty at Winona State University and is a Teaching Artist for the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts (MN). Liebhard is the Artistic Director of Rhythmically Speaking, and her choreography has been presented across the U.S. and Canada. She has worked with music-driven movement creatives as varied as hip-hop artist Rennie Harris and Appalachian clogging company the Wild Goose Chase Cloggers (and many in between!), and flexes her physical comedy muscles by playing “Nerdette” as a part of Saint Paul Saints Baseball’s Entertainment Team. Erinn is grateful her career allows her to inspire and organize individuals and communities through the embodiment of music.

Join Erinn and all the other awesome artists of RS 2016 for their production running August 18 – 20 at the Southern Theater in Minneapolis!

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RS: We Do the Technologieses!

Modern meetings.












Our 2016 Rhythmically Speaking choreographer orientation/ program kick-off meeting pretty much totally looked like this (except those people are models and not actually us, and there were four rather than seven people video chatting in, AND we were using Google Hangouts not Skype, but we were all smiling just like them!). We were all smiling not only because we share a love for the discussion topic of jazz and rhythm-driven dance, but also because this meeting was going much better than we (well, at least I) thought it would!

I for one am a big proponent of getting people together IN THE ROOM. Physical presence. As creators and performers of live dance, I can say with an amount of confidence that my colleagues agree. That said, sometimes it’s impossible to get everyone you need physically present in the room. This is where we ended up for our meeting in May. I was very nervous about accomplishing our goals when less than half of our seven were in the room, but we ended up having what I’d deem the best choreographer meeting we’ve had in our eight year history as an organization!

I attribute this primarily to the conciseness we achieved, which I believe to be the result of somewhat difficult communication conditions. It can be tough for three people watching one laptop to track video and audio feeds that are digitally representing four people while tracking each other, and visa versa! That said, these difficult conditions became a challenge we met by listening carefully and contributing when it was most beneficial. As a result, our meeting was shorter and more fruitful.

So. Modern meetings. Sometimes the bane of our productivity existence, and, pleasantly and surprisingly for me, sometimes totally awesome. Want to see what this meeting got us? Come see the show!:

Photo - Main (Cameron)

Rhythmically Speaking 2016 runs August 18 – 20 at the Southern Theater in Minneapolis. Find out more here!

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