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Roger Jeffrey, The Eternal Quest for Inspiration

Submitted by on 12 Mar 2008 – 1:14 AM Comments


Roger Jeffrey, the eternal quest for inspiration

Roger Jeffrey, the eternal quest for inspiration

His voice rings with the excitement of what he has done and the anticipation of what he has yet to do. Clearly, Roger C. Jeffrey, Artistic Director of Subtle Changes, will accomplish all of his goals. He describes himself as ambitious, yet patient. His mentor, Kevin Iega Jeff, instilled in him a deep love for his chosen profession. What often begins with Roger’s dancers in a New York City studio merely sets the framework for his finished project. Wherever he travels to set choreography, he loves getting to know his dancers, their movement, and their strengths. He uses everything from writing to movement to poetry to find the inspiration for a finished piece. He has learned to love the process, not just the result. One ballet, The Statement 7th Draft, took seven years to complete a testament to his patience. It was revised each time it was performed, demonstrating Roger’s emphasis on the process of choreography. By the time it reached the seventh draft, it was presented as a tribute to the immortal Gil Scott-Heron, culminating in three sold out performances in Brooklyn, New York. In 2005, he traveled to Bulgaria to set a small piece on Ballet Arabesque.Caught up in the enthusiasm, culture, and high standard of the dancers, it ended up being a fifty-minute ballet. This past year, he worked with the Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Company in Denver, creating a ballet to take on tour. Roger is always searching for new sources of inspiration in both performance and choreography. Several years ago, he had the rare opportunity to work and dance with the legendary Mikhail Baryshnikov. He describes Baryshnikov as one of the most amazing and inspiring dancers in the entire world.Roger’s goals are realistic yet ambitious to dance, to continue learning, and to create one or two ballets a year. He is looking forward to setting pieces for Orlando Ballet and the Washington Ballet in the near future. I just love dance, he told movmnt. There is no doubt about that!Sally Canterna First Published in movmnt magazine “Out of Line” – Spring 2007 – issue 3