FMBallet Principal Dancer and Guest Choreographer Camille Federowich on her new ballet Terror’s Kiss. It will premier October 21st at the Fargo Theatre as part of Spooky Ballets.
What inspired you to create this ballet/what inspired the story of Terror’s Kiss?
Terror’s Kiss started as a dream back when the FMBallet company was performing Alice in Wonderland. In the dream Alice sailed by waltzing stars and everytime the dancers turned, it seemed as if bits of stardust were trailing off and it was very magical. I’ve wanted to recreate that vision since and over the years characters and a concept for an entire piece grew from bits of my own reality, dreams and nightmares. Being able to create this story of fear and hope has been a surreal experience and I can’t wait to share it.
Tell me about your creative process: do you like to have steps set before you teach the dancers or do you prefer a more collaborative process where you try things out on them and see what works/ what they bring to it? Maybe a bit of both?
The FMBallet is full of so many incredible artists. When I am working one on one with certain characters I love that I can come in and they are ready to collaborate their artistry into developing the steps further. Most things have been planned, but many things change when the rehearsal get’s moving. It’s a fun process and I love seeing when the dancers are having fun being a part of it too.
How do you think the fact that you are also currently a dancer affects how you approach being a choreographer?
Still performing as well as choreographing this piece has definitely affected my approach to choreographing, but I think it’s a blessing to be able to take class and work with the same dancers I’ll be directing in later rehearsals. It’s good for me to know their strengths and weaknesses so that I can bring those out in dance steps later on.
What choreographers inspired or influence you?
I’ve been dancing with the FMBallet for seven years and have danced each spring ballet under the direction of Matthew Gasper in those past years. I am definitely influenced by his talent to story tell, and I love that he has given me the frame and tools to construct my own original vision. The steps for my ballet are very much inspired by all the forms of dance I have been trained in. There are jazzy numbers, very contemporary pieces, but all in all I would still say Terror’s Kiss as a whole is definitely a modern ballet.