She's the Program Coordinator and Visiting Scholar in Dance at Eastfield College, the Director of University of Texas at Arlington's Dance Ensemble, a guest choreographer for Dallas Neo-Classical Ballet, and a dancer at Contemporary Ballet Dallas and the Big Rig Dance Collective. Phew! Such is the life of Danielle Georgiou.
Wait, I didn't even tell you why we're featuring her on the Dallas Observer. She is also the artistic director of an eponymous dance group, which will be performing at Artopia on Saturday.
She founded Danielle Georgiou Dance Group, or DGDG for short, after performing a piece at the National Performance Network's annual conference in 2010. It was called "Roam," and featured a dance video matched to live dancers, working together as partners on identical choreography. Teatro Dallas' artistic director Cora Cardona saw the piece at NPN and commissioned a two-week run. At that point, Georgiou needed to give her cohort a name.
"The dancers immediately chimed in DGDG," Georgiou says. "They said it was my fate, my initials meant 'dance group,' and therefore, it only made sense."
The collaborative nature of that first piece set a standard for future productions. Since then, the group has performed shows throughout Dallas and participated in large-scale arts events, including last year's Aurora. Georgiou credits Pina Bausch, German Expressionism, and Ohad Naharin and his Gaga Technique as influences. And no, we're not talking Lady Gaga, dummy. Naharin developed a complicated style of dance that involves using specific areas of the body to achieve fluidity, or something like that. I looked it up on Wikipedia. My point is this: Georgiou knows her shit.
"I'm interested in how the human body moves, and how that organically changes when we are forced to interact with each other," Georgiou says. "I adore Buster Keaton, the Marx Brothers, Charlie Chaplin, and Andy Kaufman. Clowning and mime are something that you will always see in my work."
At Artopia, DGDG will give party-goers a glimpse of the upcoming show Dirty Filthy Diamonds, which opens in full at the Margo Jones Theatre, Feb. 26. In the cross-genre performance piece, Georgiou collaborated with playwright and designer Justin Locklear (he's also her boyfriend), composer Jermy Elizabeth Johnson and make-up/graphic artists Hillary Holsonback and Emily Loving. And, of course, 14 dancers.
She explains that the show, "presents the perverse honesty of humanity. We are the Dirty Filthy Diamonds. Humans exhibit a duality of thought and instinct, which makes them very fascinating to investigate."
People who've attended DGDG shows before know the bizarre, beautiful experience this performance will be for Artopia guests. The rest of you? Well, you'll just have to show up and find out. You can also see a preview on the show's Kickstarter page. You can grab Artopia tickets here.
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