THE ESSENTIAL A&E PICKS FOR AUG 11 - 17 | Entertainment Picks | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly
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THE ESSENTIAL A&E PICKS FOR AUG 11 - 17 

Myriad Dance: Dream Spark @ Dreamscapes, Brandon Greer & Elizabeth Drysdale @ Weller Book Works, Fem Dance: State of Flux, and more.

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Myriad Dance: Dream Spark @ Dreamscapes
The Utah Arts Alliance's Dreamscapes interactive space has reopened now in its third location, but a consistent thread over that time has been the work of Myriad Dance. According to the company's artistic director, Kendall Fischer, Dreamscapes is the kind of venue that allows for a unique experience for the dance artists.

"When you're performing in a theater, you have the curtain to hide you, and everything's very controlled: You do your dancing, and the curtain comes down, and you're done," Fischer days. "This type of performing experience is a little more challenging in a lot of ways; the dancers are not only responsible for doing their moves, but also guiding the audience through the space, and manage the timing of that. It can really keep you on your toes."

Fisher describes the new Myriad Dance/Dreamscapes collaboration Dream Spark, once again developed from a story by RJ Walker, as one where "it starts out in Happyton, which is very cheery—almost too much so, like maybe something's wrong and you're trying to hide it. Guests journey through Dreamscapes and discover there's something called the Dwindling happening, where things are losing their color."

Dream Spark runs at the new Dreamscapes location in The Shops at South Towne (10450 S. State, Sandy) on Aug. 11, Aug. 18 and Aug. 25. Scheduled audience entrance times begin at 6:30, 6:45, 7:00 and 7:15, and the full interactive experience runs 60-90 minutes depending on visitor choices. General admission tickets are $25; visit utaharts.org/en/dreamscapes for tickets and additional event information. (Scott Renshaw)

Brandon Greer & Elizabeth Drysdale @ Weller Book Works
The Utah literary landscape is full of authors specializing in pre-teen and young-adult fiction—not a shock, given the demographics of the state. This week, Weller Book Works showcases two of these authors, along with a fun, kid-friendly event with the same fantastical themes as the books.

Brandon J. Greer brings two new works: Liam Lewis and the Summer Camp Curse and The Clandestine Queen. The former tells the story of a 13-year-old troublemaker named Liam who's sent off to a summer behavioral-correction camp by his parents. Liam is determined to resist the camp's methods, only to discover that the camp director is a wizard, and that he may never return home unless he and the other campers find a way to retrieve a mystical gem. The latter book follows the conflict between two characters: one, the unwilling servant of a demon set on a quest that could earn him his freedom, and the other an orphan who learns that she may be heir to the title of "queen of the witches."

Elizabeth Drysdale's Out of Time also tells the story of a young witch, whose ability to time-travel might be the key to breaking a curse. Her destination, however, is a time when witches aren't particularly in favor: 17th-century New England.

This free event at Weller Book Works (607 Trolley Square) on Thursday, Aug. 11 at 6 p.m. includes not only a reading and signing by the authors, but an in-store, witch-themed scavenger hunt. Visit wellerbookworks.com for additional event information. (SR)

Fem Dance: State of Flux
It was a bold move to launch a new dance company in spring of 2021, with vaccines only beginning their roll-out and performing arts events still a challenge. But beginning with a performance at that year's Great Salt Lake Fringe Festival, company director Alicia Ross and her team of dancers—including Nicole Smith, Becca Speechley, Christi Harris, Ruby Cabbell and Jorji Diaz-Fadel—got rolling. Their mission, according to Ross: We hope to provide space and opportunities for choreographers and performers to have full creative freedom in the collaborative process, producing innovative work that showcases the remarkable talent of women artists. We value the expression of all women's voices, bodies, and backgrounds, and we strive to celebrate and support all women in the dance community."

State of Flux marks Fem Dance Company's second evening-length production, following one in December of 2021. The show is scheduled to include two dance films and two live pieces by Ross, New York choreographer Kaley Pruitt and local guest choreographer Jessica Baynes. The works' themes include, according to Ross, "fluctuations of growth, the impermanence of life and making peace with the present, and an anti-war statement in support of Ukraine. Local Utah dancers have come together to make this show possible, and we are thrilled to share these works with our audience members."

Fem Dance Company presents State of Flux at the Rose Wagner Center Black Box (210 E. 300 South) Aug. 12 – 13 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 general admission; visit arttix.org for tickets, information on current health & safety protocols and additional information. (SR)

Living Traditions Mondays in the Park Concert Series
Every May, the Living Traditions Festival brings together dozens of performance groups for a showcase of dance, music and more showcasing the rich cultural tapestry of Utah. But the mission of Living Traditions doesn't begin and end with that festival; as the summer winds down, you can get more opportunities to experience these amazing performers.

Beginning in August and continuing through the weekend after Labor Day, the Living Traditions Mondays in the Park Concert Series gives center stage to two local cultural performance organizations every Monday night. Next on the schedule, on Monday, Aug. 15, the double-feature starts with Ballet Las Americas de Utah (pictured), the longest running Latin American folk dancing and music group in the state. Following them on the same evening is Los Hermanos de los Andes, an Andean music group using authentic musical instruments dating back to the Incan civilization. The presentations continue on Aug. 22 with Rinceoiri Don Spraoi Irish Dancers and Bomba Marilé (Puerto Rican music and dance); Aug. 29 with Halau Ku Pono I Kamalani (Polynesian dance) and Sabor Tropical; and Sept. 12 with Utah Punjabi Arts Academy (Indian dance) and Bazeen (North African Music).

Living Traditions Mondays in the Park concerts take place in Liberty Park at the Chase Home Museum in Liberty Park (600 E. 900 South), with performances beginning at 7 p.m. for the first act, and 8 p.m. for the second. Performances are free, and visitors are encouraged to bring chairs and blankets. Visit saltlakearts.org/livingtraditionspresents for additional information. (SR)

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