New Television Workshop Collection

New Television Workshop Collection Program MaterialsAlive From Off Center

From an Island Summer

Copyright Date:

Copyright Holder:
Karole Armitage and Charles Atlas

Armitage, Karole
Atlas, Charles

1 videoreel of 1 (26 min.) : sd., col. ; 1 in.
1 videocassette of 1 (Betacam SP) (26 min.) : sd., col. ; 1/2 in.
1 videocassette of 1 (VHS) (26 min.) : sd., col. ; 1/2 in.
1 videocassette of 1 (26 min.) : sd., col. ; 3/4 in.
1 videocassette of 1 (26 min.) : sd., col. ; 3/4 in.

Producer Susan Dowling incorporated the Coney Island section of "From an Island Summer" as a segment in the "Alive From Off Center" show "Summer Dances." Dowling later included a longer segment of this same section in "Solos, Duets, and Pizza," a work that was also broadcast as an episode of the PBS series "Alive from Off Center," and on Channel 4 in the U.K. The work as a whole appears in Episode 601 of the 1990 season of "New Television" with Atlas' "Put Blood in the Music," about the New York music scene.

Includes a 1" master of the complete work, a Betacam SP preservation master, and 3/4" and VHS screening copies.

"From an Island Summer" was created by choreographer Karole Armitage and video artist Charles Atlas. In "From an Island Summer" Armitage and two other dancers perform her upbeat movements in two distinct sections. The first, dated August 27, 1983, takes place at Coney Island, at the beach and in front of refreshment stands advertising shish kebab and pizza. The reactions of passersby are incorporated, including those of a young man and a woman who are in fact intentional performers in the video. The dancers are seen on a circular ride at the amusement park. In the second part of the work, dated August 25, 1983, the performers are seen working in a rehearsal studio. The dancers take to the streets and are seen performing in front of a movie theater and at Times Square in New York City. The same man and woman who appeared in the Coney Island segment are amid the crowd. In both segments, the wandering eye of the camera rests on street texts in the form of advertisements and newspaper headlines. Armitage's movement style incorporates punkish elements and classic ballet-like legwork.

Music for the Coney Island section is "Ven Y Baila Mi Son" by Henry Fiol. The second section is accompanied by experimental classical-style music entitled "We'll Be There" by Rabbie Burnsmith and his Ticket Toots.

Atlas, Charles
Gibson, Paul (Director of Photography)

Atlas, Charles

Atlas, Charles

Armitage, Karole
Boassert, Lita
Byrd, Donald
McMullen, Patrick
Vishno, Mary Beth

Amusement parks
Modern dance
New York (New York)


See Also:
Summer Dances
Solos, Duets, and Pizza
New Television, Episode 601 (1990)

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