The student-run Modernextension Dance Company is preparing to dance among the many works of art in the Ackland Art Museum from 6-8 p.m. on Nov. 17.
The group will create improvised dances based on observations and inspiration taken from the various pieces in the museum.
“Improvisation is basically where you dance off the top of your head,” Modernextension president Lacey McLamb said. "None of it's choreographed, the dancer is just making it up on their own the entire time.”
Though Modernextension performs improv shows annually, this is the first time it will be doing so in the Ackland.
The group's vice president of internal affairs, Mary Linares, said the group has two main performances each year, including an improv show in the fall. This year’s improv show will take place at the Ackland and the second semester's fully-choreographed performance will occur in April at Chapel Hill High School.
The club has used more common dance spaces, but decided to take their improv show in a new direction this year, inspired by a site-specific performance hosted at the Ackland by UNC’s discontinued modern dance class.
“So we knew that that was an avenue that we could take and we reached out to them, and they were amazing and were willing to work with us,” Linares, said.
Dancers stationed throughout the gallery will interpret the art in their designated area, picking up on themes and motifs within the art to inform their performances. McLamb and Lila Wilson, the vice president of external affairs, will lead the audience on a tour through the different galleries and dancers in the Ackland.
Planning the show poses its own new challenges.