N.Y.C. “Best Bet”- The Mark Lamb Dance Company’s Second Saturday Sanctuary Salon At Seven Series, Monthly, Metro Baptist Church, Ongoing
By E. Joyce Glasgow
Photo Credits/Copyrights, E. Joyce Glasgow, www.artsandculturescene.com
I took these photos at the May 2010 Second Saturday Sanctuary Salon at Seven.
Mark Lamb (www.marklambdance.org) and his dance company recently celebrated the first anniversary of their monthly Second Saturday Sanctuary Salon at Seven. This monthly event, every second Saturday, makes my “Best Bets” list for things to do in New York City.
Lamb founded this sweet, regular, community oriented event with a lot of heart, creativity and nurturance for both the dancers and audience members alike, serving delicious homemade treats and wine all evening, including his famous baked cheese sticks, offered up on candlelit tables with flowers, in an aesthetic atmosphere of warmth, hospitality, camaraderie and friendship.
In the intimate style of a “Salon”, the relaxed and casual evenings unfold with three sets of contemporary dance with live music, interspersed with breaks for eating, drinking and getting to know the performers and other audience members. Lamb collaborates with some of New York’s finest musicians, resulting in exciting and new performances every month, including choreography and spoken word by company members and engaging improvisations. The dancing is graceful, with clean lines, simplicity, concentration, fearlessness, harmonious group cohesion and interaction and often tells stories about the individual dancer’s emotional inner landscapes and histories. Lamb’s dancers have been with him over the course of years and their familiarity of working together contributes to seamless dynamism and ease in communicating with each other and the audience through their dances.
Lamb believes that all can dance, whether dancers or not and the collaborating musicians participate physically in the performances, bringing a new dimension to their musical involvement. Musical collaborators include jazz and experimental vocalists/composers/instrumentalists, Kendra Shank, Fay Victor, Kyoko Kitamura and folk singer/songwriter/guitarist, Terre Roche of The Roches.
Lamb leads dance education programs for young people and sometimes incorporates them into the performances. Hudson, the now year and a half year old son of the Metro Baptist Church’s female pastor, appears in some of the dances every month, an unusual sight and it is a joy to see all the love, support and encouragement given to him by the dancers and the ease in which he participates, gleefully and organically, in the flow.
The Metro Baptist Church’s sanctuary (www.metrobaptistchurcnyc.org) is a lovely, well-kept, large open space, in midtown Manhattan, with a beautiful hardwood floor, perfect for dancing. Mark Lamb’s association with the church began when the pastor offered him a position as artist in residence. He has taken his opportunity of regularly working in the space to establish his Second Saturday monthly performances, which have added a great contribution to the New York community arts scene.
For Mark Lamb, these monthly performances are a labor of love and a generous gift to the community, done for the joy of it, expenses mostly coming out of his own pocket. He recently received a well-deserved grant to continue doing his work. Attendance is by donation (suggested $20.00) and all are welcomed.
I highly recommend the Second Saturday Sanctuary Salon at Seven as a really heartful and satisfying and unique way to spend a Saturday evening and connect with others in New York City, for both residents and visitors.
Here is a video clip of Mark Lamb Dance Company at one of the Second Saturday Salons.
click below to watch