Still from La Folía. Shot by Olivia Kimmel, Courtesy Adam Grannick

What to Watch: This Short Film Celebrates the Dancer in All of Us

As we approach Thanksgiving, there's much to be grateful for. Perhaps one of the most important things on your list is dance. Whether you're a full-time company member, an aspiring professional, an audience member, or you simply delight in dancing in your daydreams, this art form is a creative escape.

That's not to say that being a dancer is easy: Pursuing such a competitive career can be heartbreaking, especially when you're faced with rejection.

La Folía, a short dance film by director Adam Grannick that was recently released online, echoes these sentiments in under 12 minutes.


Still from La Folía. Shot by Mickey Lewitter, Courtesy Adam Grannick.

The 24 quick vignettes are all set to a familiar classical melody, known as "La Folía," a theme that's been recycled by various composers over the last 500 years. Many of the snapshots involve dance—a teen girl rejected from an audition because she doesn't have a typical ballet body, or a corporate woman who reflects on flamenco dancing as she rides the elevator to her office (perhaps she used to be a dancer, or she wishes that she could be). All of the stories, however, are told without dialogue, often with repetitive motions, and depict a series human struggles: There's the work-weary businessman, who becomes increasingly disheveled on his morning commute as the days tick by. Or the writer, who surrounds himself with an ever-growing pile of crumpled paper, each another rejected attempt at perfection.

At its heart, La Folía is a reminder that, while life isn't perfect, there's a dancer, or an artist, in all of us. And drawing on that can unlock a little magic when we need it most.

Latest Posts


J. Alice Jackson, Courtesy CHRP

Chicago Human Rhythm Project's Rhythm World Finally Celebrates Its 30th Anniversary

What happens when a dance festival is set to celebrate a landmark anniversary, but a global pandemic has other plans?

Chicago's Rhythm World, the oldest tap festival in the country, should have enjoyed its 30th iteration last summer. Disrupted by COVID-19, it was quickly reimagined for virtual spaces with a blend of recorded and livestreamed classes. So as not to let the pandemic rob the festival of its well-deserved fanfare, it was cleverly marketed as Rhythm World 29.5.

Fortunately, the festival returns in full force this year, officially marking three decades of rhythm-making with three weeks of events, July 26 to August 15. As usual, the festival will be filled with a variety of master classes, intensive courses and performances, as well as a teacher certification program and the Youth Tap Ensemble Conference. At the helm is Chicago native Jumaane Taylor, the newly appointed festival director, who has curated both the education and performance programs. Taylor, an accomplished choreographer, came to the festival first as a young student and later as part of its faculty.

GO DEEPER SHOW LESS
July 2021