Organized by the İzmir Foundation for Culture Arts and Education (İKSEV), the 28th International İzmir Festival will host the U.S.' oldest dance company - the Martha Graham Dance Company. This dance company, which includes 22 Turkish dancers, will perform today at Kültürpark Open Air Theater.
İKSEV chairman of the board Filiz Eczacıbaşı Sarper said in a press conference that the dance company, which performed at the festival in 1990, will be on stage at this year's festival with the addition of 22 Turkish dancers who were trained by production director Penny Diamantopoulou.
Pointing out that they want to work with the dance company again in the future, Sarper said, "I am very excited about this project. We will get in touch with the authorities and make an effort for the Martha Graham Dance Company to teach here in Turkey. We want an institute to be established for teaching the techniques of the company as well as forming master classes. As the İzmir Foundation for Culture Arts and Education, we will support our dancers to finish their training and be a part of the Martha Graham Dance Company in U.S." Martha Graham Dance Company art director Janet Eilber noted that four projects, three of which belong to Martha Graham, will be staged in the show.
Eilber further said that the Turkish dancers will be a part of the "Panorama" project that was formed in 1935 for dance students to show the power of changing people's routines. "Panorama" production director Penny Diamantopoulou said that although Turkish dancers had a hard time in the 10-day training due to the differences in style, they were willing and courageous. Diamantopoulou added that she is pleased with the result. Saying that they had a difficult time learning the new techniques, as they were trained in a completely different style, İzmir State Opera and Ballet dancer Çisil Soyöz said that they are very excited about the show. One of the three male dancers in the project, Antalya State Opera and Ballet dancer Aykut Levent Özer noted that the project started between the two World Wars.
He added that he feels like he directs society, which the project mirrors, toward goodness. The company will perform the pieces "Errand," "Echo" and "Rite of Spring" as well as "Panoroma." The performance will take place at the Kültürpark Open Air Theater today at 9.30 p.m.