Behind the scenes

Science meets art

ocean-dance-190March 6, 2013

Last weekend, MBARI researchers Judith Connor and Jim Barry talked about changes in ocean chemistry during performances of Ocean—a science-inspired dance program—at San Jose State University. This multimedia production, conceived by choreographer Fran Spector Atkins and performed by her SpectorDance company, is the result of a unique collaboration between SpectorDance and MBARI. Kyra Schlining, a biologist at MBARI, worked with Spector Atkins to provide MBARI images and scientific information. Schlining’s husband, Brian, an MBARI engineer, helped with lighting and projection for the weekend performances. Portraying changes in the ocean, the professional dancers gave spectacular performances accompanied by original music, MBARI deep-sea images, and interviews with scientists. After the show, Connor said, “This experience reminded me how fortunate I am to live in this creative community and to work with smart, environmentally conscious people like the Schlinings.”